Leeds businesses putting themselves at risk of digital fraud

Lloyds Bank is calling on small businesses across Leeds to enhance their digital security, after new research revealed that a number of firms say they are ill-prepared against cyber attack.

At a ‘Backing Your Ambition’ event on digital fraud hosted by the bank on Tuesday for local small to medium sized enterprises (SMEs), two out of five firms (40 per cent) of firms admitted their current security measures were insufficient, as a fifth said they had fallen victim to a digital attack in the past 12 months.

Of those who have already experienced digital financial fraud, the implications have been severe, with more than half (53 per cent) stating that they had lost up to 10 per cent of their turnover as a result.

The non-financial implications of a cyber attack also caused concern for many. 65 per cent of attendees stated that loss of time would be the most significant non-financial loss to their company, whereas a third (28 per cent) believe that losing a contract would cause most disruption.

Leigh Taylor, area director for SME Banking in Yorkshire, Lloyds Bank Commercial Banking, said: “Experiencing financial fraud can be devastating for a company, especially if it results in a monetary loss or a data breach.

“Firms can take a number of steps to improve their digital security and fraud protection. This includes ensuring the latest security is installed on devices, training staff on the potential dangers of operating digitally and having tough safety protocols in place for internet banking.

“Our research has highlighted the need for firms to work closely with industry professionals to ensure that they have the tailored support and guidance needed to stay safe.”

Speaking at the event about the impact of online, digital and telephonic fraud, and how businesses can protect themselves in the digital world, was, Rob Hadfield, director of content at Get Safe Online.

He said: “Protecting your business against digital fraud is more important than ever before, with the vast majority of small firms using digital technology as part of day-to-day trading. 

“It’s vital that business leaders are educated on the risks out there, so they can take the necessary steps to ensure their devices are safeguarded against all possible threats.”

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