Small businesses are being encouraged to tighten up their security amid research that revealed that cyber attacks on businesses have increased over the last year.

The Department for Business, Innovation and Skills (BIS) said that some attacks cause over £1 million worth of damage.<!–more–>

Their research showed that small businesses are increasingly at risk, with 87 percent experiencing a security breach last year, which is an increase of 10 percent from the previous year. The average cost to SMEs was between £35,000 and £65,000.

The government is responding by offering funding of up to £5,000 to firms to help them improve their computer security.

Universities and science minister David Willets said:

“Keeping electronic information safe and secure is vital to a business’s bottom line.”

“Companies are more at risk than ever of having their cyber security compromised, in particular small businesses, and no sector is immune from attack. But there are simple steps that can be taken to prevent the majority of incidents.”

Ricky Steedman