Nearly half of UK small businesses have experienced a cyberattack

Image Credit: Geralt / Pixabay (Image credit: Image Credit: Geralt / Pixabay)

A new report by McAfee has uncovered the true extent of cyberattacks on small businesses, who are increasingly at risk of having their work disrupted by attacks.

The study of SMB owners and decision-makers from six countries revealed that three-quarters (73%) of organizations now believe cybersecurity is one of their biggest risks.

Two-thirds (67%) of the businesses questioned confirmed that they had suffered from a cyberattack in the past two years, with 17% having experienced more than one.

Cyberattacks are on the rise

Not only do cyberattacks put businesses at risk of data loss and other unwarranted access, but they also present lasting financial effects on companies. Three in five (61%) lost more than £10,000 dealing with a cyberattack, while many others noted the physical or mental toll, and the lost time dealing with resulting IT issues.

Alarmingly, the study also sheds some light on the effects of artificial intelligence on the landscape. McAfee emphasized that more criminals are turning to AI to scale, speed up, and enhance the sophistication of their attacks, particularly phishing and other scams.

In the case of cybersecurity, McAfee sees fighting fire with fire as the most appropriate solution, calling on businesses to adopt AI in order prevent AI-enhanced attacks more effectively.

Despite growing awareness of cyber threats, small businesses continue to face challenges in threat management, with around half (48%) of business owners expressing full confidence in their ability to prevent attacks.

Looking ahead, McAfee addresses some key areas of weakness. Namely, that businesses are not using more experienced third parties to help boost their security. Naturally, the study is an opportunity for McAfee to plug its own products, but more generally, broader collaboration between experts can help form an unbreakable chain of defense against attackers.

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Craig Hale

With several years’ experience freelancing in tech and automotive circles, Craig’s specific interests lie in technology that is designed to better our lives, including AI and ML, productivity aids, and smart fitness. He is also passionate about cars and the decarbonisation of personal transportation. As an avid bargain-hunter, you can be sure that any deal Craig finds is top value!