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Oct 5, 2022

BUSINESSES planning to cut spending on cybersecurity due to the cost of living crisis risk playing into the hands of fraudsters, a leading expert has warned.

Roy Shelton said many companies are growing increasingly concerned about the pressure they face from inflation, tax and interest rates. 

But amid reports security budgets are being targeted for savings, Mr Shelton, the CEO of the Yorkshire-based Business Services firm Connectus, urged those tempted to cut costs in this area to think again.

“That’s what online fraudsters are banking on businesses doing right now,” Mr Shelton warned.  “It’s highly likely we will see attacks increase as the cost of living crisis continues because criminals will be looking to capitalise on vulnerability during this period.

“The ever increasing cyber security threat to all types of businesses is now clear for all to see. Last year more than one in three of all UK companies were subject to some type of cyber-attack, and even charities are being impacted in a significant way.

“A fraudster will always target and manipulate the points of least resistance which are generally in two areas. Firstly, they’ll go after people via social engineering. Secondly they will attack processes via phishing emails and other methods. They are also increasingly using technology and ransomware, to carry out brute force penetration on businesses. 

“During a time of economic turbulence and challenge it can be tempting to cut spending on areas like security, thinking you might get away with it. But doing so can create more expensive problems to fix in the future. 

Commenting on the wider pressures businesses in the tech-space are facing, Mr Shelton added: “Inflation is causing a great deal of concern right across the business community. It creates larger overheads through wage inflation, energy hikes and other associated cost increases.

“I’d urge businesses to carry out IT audits to ensure they are getting the most out of their current IT budget. In many cases these audits can save them money and deliver more capabilities. It’s vital that whoever is carrying out the audit really gets under the bonnet of the business, and performs a proper MOT on the systems in place. Effective  IT policies should underpin a company’s corporate objectives, and it needs to remain robust, saleable, cost effective and secure through the unpredictable months ahead.”

Mr Shelton said migrating legacy technology to the cloud can also save businesses money and boost their security

He added: “By migrating expensive legacy technology to the cloud businesses can save considerable sums of money on the on-site energy which they consume from their servers and infrastructure.

In comparison to on-premise legacy systems, cloud platforms are also extremely safe and reliable. To ensure further protection, data is kept and transferred in encrypted format. Customers are less vulnerable to cyber attacks as a result of such efforts.”

By admin