Are surveying SMEs a weak cyber security link? - Capital Property Manager

Are surveying SMEs a weak cyber security link?

By Angela O'Hearne


Interesting article from Dr Stefanie Frey who is managing director at Deutor Cyber Security Solutions in Bern, Switzerland

After reading this article recently I thought it particularly pertinent in the present climate to share.  As most companies are forced to swap the workplace and ensure employees can operate from their homes, cyber security is more important than ever.  Property management companies using systems to hold vital portfolio information cannot afford to lose any data and it is imperative to ensure your systems are secure from a cyber attack.

Many SMEs don’t consider themselves important enough to be victims of a cyber attack. We often hear the question, “why me?”. And when the attack happens, such businesses will probably be unprepared, because they have not invested enough in security in the first place.

In today’s globalised, digitised and interconnected world, everyone can be the target of cyber criminals. Surveying SMEs in particular can be part of long, complex supply chains, and targeted as the weakest link. For example, a new trend we’ve observed is where an attacker will threaten to destroy data backups – anything from confidential client payment information to development blueprints – demanding ever-higher ransoms if they are not paid.

It is imperative that SMEs consider cyber security as part of the overall quality management of the business, not just as some expensive technical task. Ensure you have measures in place for the three phases of a cyber attack: before (preventative), during (reactive) and after (stabilisation).

Furthermore, make sure your client contracts are aligned with your security needs, and that your company is fully GDPR-compliant, with all processes and concepts properly documented. In addition, think about taking out a specific cyber security insurance that fits your individual risk profile and business needs.

Taken from an RICS Comment on UK Commercial market.