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Help for small businesses to stay secure from rising cyber threat

Small businesses are being offered bespoke advice to combat rising online threats is being offered through a state-of-the-art digital tool launched by the leading cyber security experts.

As part of the cross-government Cyber Aware campaign, GCHQ’s National Cyber Security Centre (NCSC) has created the Cyber Action Plan to help micro businesses and sole traders securely navigate the increasingly digital landscape they operate in.

The government’s most recent Cyber Security Breaches Survey found that almost half of micro and small businesses reported cyber security breaches or attacks in the past year. 46% were victims of these cyber incidents – up from 31% the previous year.

To help increase their digital defence, micro businesses and sole traders are being invited to complete a short questionnaire at that generates a personalised list of actions linked to the Cyber Aware behaviours.

Matt Warman, Digital Infrastructure Minister said:

“We want the UK to be the best place in the world to do business online, so I welcome the NCSC helping sole traders and microbusinesses with tailored advice on defending against cyber threats.

“I strongly recommend business owners take advantage of this tool to help us build back safer from the pandemic and ensure there is no way in for hackers.

NCSC Deputy Director for Economy and Society, Sarah Lyons said:

“Small businesses are the lifeblood of this country, but we know they can be a target for cyber criminals, particularly as they move more operations online.

“Our free Cyber Action Plan is here to help, offering bespoke, actionable information linked to the Cyber Aware behaviours.

“If you work for yourself, or run a small business, I would urge you to spend a few minutes on the questionnaire and follow the steps to help secure your business.”

The government is committed to supporting UK businesses and the NCSC has published advice and guidance to support organisations of all sizes, including how they can securely move their physical operations online and safely scale-up home working.

Cyber Aware is the government’s advice on how to stay secure online, offering six actions people can take to protect themselves from the majority of cyber crime. It can be found at

The launch of the Cyber Action Plan follows a report from the Centre for Economic Performance, which found that more than 60% of UK businesses have shifted to working via new technologies since the start of the pandemic.

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