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Cyber-attacks are increasing for many of the UK’s SMEs


  • Half of UK SMEs have suffered a cyber-attack
  • 77% trust their bank’s IT systems
  • 52% have invested in staff training to help prevent attacks

Half of the UK’s SMEs have suffered a cyber-attack, with ransomware attacks the most frequently experienced, followed by phishing emails. Of those firms who have suffered a cyber-attack, two thirds have been the subject of increased incidents, and 54% have suffered a financial loss, according to the latest independent research* from Close Brothers Asset Finance.

The research also reveals that 52% of business owners have invested in staff training to help prevent cyber-attacks, rising to 70% in the Engineering sector and 61% in Manufacturing.

A further 50% have invested in additional cyber security in the past 12 months, with Engineering and Manufacturing again leading the way.

Trust in banks’ IT systems is quite high at 77%, with the larger the company, the higher the trust.

Our view

“It’s well documented that many businesses of all sizes have at some point suffered some form of cyber-attack, whether it’s a ransomware or phishing attack,” said Neil Davies, CEO of Close Brothers’ Commercial Division. “What our research shows is that company owners are not only more aware of the dangers posed by cyber-attacks, but are taking action by investing in training or additional security, or a combination of the two.

“This clearly doesn’t come cheap but the potential losses – financial and reputational – means it’s something all business owners will increasingly have to consider, if they haven’t already.”