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NZ SMEs lagging in uptake of cyber protection

New Zealand small businesses are lagging in their uptake of cyber protection compared with their Australian counterparts the Insurance Council of New Zealand reported today.

Only 6% of SMEs in New Zealand have cyber insurance, compared with 14% in Australia, leaving many kiwis vulnerable to an attack.

Insurance Council Chief Executive Tim Grafton said “big corporates get it, we are seeing a real move to most having a cyber policy or at least a standing item on their board agendas.”

“The real problem area is NZ small-medium enterprises.  We are a nation of small businesses with 90+% of businesses in NZ under 20 employees.  The common sorts of crypto attacks are unsophisticated, untargeted and while low in dollar value – usually sub $5,000, enough to be an annoyance and damaging to a small business” he said.

A recent Norton NZ small business security survey found 1 in 5 small businesses in New Zealand have been targeted by a cyber attack.

90 percent of cyber incidents begin with a human error in the organisation being attacked, which makes education about cyber risks and robust cyber risk management extremely important. Victims are also very often unaware that a cyber breach has occurred; it may be some years before a breach or its consequences are discovered. The average amount of time a breach goes unnoticed is around 9 months (240 days).

This week is Cyber Smart week – New Zealand’s cyber security week.