Free helpline set up for businesses overwhelmed by IT security risks

Businesses in Burnley are being supported by IT security experts, Bandicoot who have set up a free helpline to support those that have been hacked or want to improve their IT security.

MD and data security expert Stuart Bowen explained: “Security awareness training for staff working from home is even more critical. Homeworking brings more complex data security issues, and the risk of socially engineered attacks are higher.

"New clients often tell me they have been “winging it” or worse. They assumed that their data was safe and it wasn’t! One accidental click in a phishing email and the virus was on their network; their client data was gone and systems locked! Our IT support package Peta includes Security Awareness Training, protecting our clients from being tricked into downloading encryption viruses, monitoring systems and backing up data should the worst-case scenario happen."

The scale of the problem is thought to be vastly underreported because it’s so common nowadays, the police are powerless, and businesses are understandably reluctant to go public. However, official government statistics from the Cyber Security Breaches Survey 2021 showed that:

  • Four in ten businesses reported having cyber security breaches or attacks in the previous 12 months;
  • Businesses are finding it harder to take appropriate cyber security measures during the pandemic e.g. IT security monitoring or implementing any form of user monitoring;
  • Small organisations reported average losses of £8,460, while medium and large firms lost £13,400 on average.

IT Governance’s Luke Irwin says, “Your staff’s ability to spot and respond to threats is one of the most important ways of protecting your organisation. This can be seen by the proportion of phishing attacks, which rely on exploiting human weaknesses. Yet only 14% of businesses provide regular training and 20% have performed activities to test staff, such as simulated phishing attacks.”

Bandicoot recently sent out IT Security Mouse Mats to over 200 local Businesses giving top tips on responding to emails safely. Bandicoot now has 1,000 “GET OUT OF JAIL FREE” cards to give to local businesses, encouraging them not to take a CHANCE with their IT. Stuart hopes that the helpline will be used by many more small business owners who are overwhelmed by IT security risks to take action. 

By educating business owners and offering up to an hour’s free support, Bandicoot builds awareness of IT security issues amongst the local business community, saving them from unnecessary costs and disruption. Tom Coley, Bandicoot’s longest-serving IT Specialist, advises taking proactive steps to sign up for an IT support package that offers monitoring and data security before an attack happens. Tom explained, “Despite ever-increasing risks, we are so confident in our service that we provide a Virus and Data Recovery Guarantee”. For your free IT Support or more information on Bandicoot’s IT support packages, visit www.bandicoot.co.uk or call the helpline on 01282 506 616.