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SMEs in the UK will have better access to a range of free tools and resources to help them stay safe online thanks to a new partnership between Virgin Money and the Global Cyber Alliance (GCA).

Cyber security is a significant problem, with 39% of UK businesses having identified a cyber attack in 2022¹ and 31% estimating they have been attacked at least once a week. The average cost of a cyber attack is £4,200, rising to £19,400 for medium and large businesses.

To help manage this risk, Virgin Money has partnered with GCA to offer the free GCA Cybersecurity Toolkit for Small Business to its business customers. The toolkit addresses the most common cyber risks affecting small businesses, enabling them to address common weaknesses so they can focus more time and resources on their core business objectives.

Specifically designed for small businesses, the toolkit provides clear, actionable guidance and tools to help protect small businesses from the cyber risks they can face on a daily basis. It guides businesses through six steps to protect themselves, including creating an asset register, applying security updates, password management, protecting against phishing and malware, backing up data, and protecting email domains from spoofers, spammers, and phishing attacks. Implementing these steps across a business can significantly reduce the cyber risk they face.

The toolkit also includes access to Quad9, which is a free security solution that prevents users from accessing known malicious websites.

Also accessible from the toolkit is a series of simple mini courses developed by GCA, each lasting around 15 minutes. They can be taken at any time and pace and can help businesses build their understanding of cyber risks and their potential impact from a business perspective.

Kash Ahmad, Head of Business Banking at Virgin Money said: “Cyber security can be a daunting challenge for business owners, but the good news is there are relatively simple things businesses can do to protect themselves. Our partnership with the Global Cyber Alliance means our customers benefit from a free toolkit to help reduce their cyber risk, and is another way we’re offering our customers the next generation of banking services to make their lives easier.”

Brian Cute, Director of GCA’s Capacity & Resilience Program said: “Providing SMEs with accessible and easy to implement cyber security tools allows them to focus on their customers and grow their business. At GCA, we understand that businesses don’t always have ready access to the cyber security resources they need. Working in partnership with Virgin Money ensures that SMEs in the UK will have the tools they need to reduce their cyber risks.”

1-DCMS Cyber Security Breaches Survey