Muswell Hill and Tottenham businesses taught to tackle cyber crime
- Credit: Met Police
Implementing simple measures, such as updating passwords and installing anti-virus software, are among the easy steps to prevent most cyber crime, says a not-for-profit cyber security organisation.
The Police Digital Security Centre (Police DSC), which is owned by the police and works with a range of industry and government bodies, provides free cyber security advice to small and medium-sized businesses (SMEs).
On January 26 and 27, it partnered up with the local Met safer neighbourhood teams and visited SMEs in Muswell Hill and Tottenham, to deliver free advice on the simple steps they can take to reduce their risk of cyber crime, meaning crimes that occur online, and fraud.
The Police DSC says studies show apathy towards cyber security is highest among SMEs, with many not realising the risks they face when they have a website, use social media, communicate through email and provide free Wi-Fi to their customers.
While a study by the department for digital, culture, media and sport found that there was a decrease in cyber security breaches reported by small businesses in 2021, down 8% when compared to 2020, the Police DSC says that the shift to working from home requires good policies, cyber security and fraud prevention training to be put in place.
On the days out visiting Muswell Hill and Tottenham SMEs, Hannah Khoo, business engagement officer at the Police DSC, said: “We received a warm welcome from the business community, who were extremely interested in what we had to say and appreciated the visit from both ourselves and the police.
“Everyone received a small pack of extra information to read and share with others, especially if the business owner or manager was unavailable that day.
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“This was also a wonderful opportunity for the businesses to meet their local policing team and ask them questions on what is happening in the area.”
She said various forms of best-practice were discussed, and that “many of our conversations involved the use of strong passwords, Two Factor Authentication (2FA), supply chain fraud and updating software”.
Hannah added that, while there is nothing in the diary just yet, “we look forward to revisiting Haringey in the future, as there were lots of businesses we did not manage to visit”.
If you fall victim to fraud, contact Action Fraud: https://www.actionfraud.police.uk/