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Internet issues, phishing emails top SMEs' tech concerns

15 Jan 2019

A survey of UK small businesses has found that many are concerned about how internet-related issues could affect their business in 2019.

The survey, commissioned by a managed IT support provider called Q2Q, found that phishing emails, internet issues, GDPR compliance and cybersecurity were some of the biggest worries. It found that 52% of company bosses said that internet problems have been responsible for some of their firm’s biggest technology-related headaches.

More than half (64%) of SMEs choose to outsource their IT support, however 10% of company owners didn’t have any kind of technical provision.

According to Q2Q managing director Andrew Stellakis, it is inexcusable that internet issues are still responsible for more than half of SMEs’ IT-related headaches.

“There are plenty of things which can cause a slow connection, but understanding the root cause is key to getting the most out of our systems, employees and the working day,” Stellakis comments.

Phishing emails were also a major concern – 38% of the most common scam communications were made up of the classic emails purporting to be from a foreign billionaire who was eager to ‘give away’ money. 

However, phishing emails that masquerade as financial information requests from the CEO are ultimately harder to detect as frauds.

Thirty-six percent of businesses said that cybersecurity is a major source of stress, with emerging online risks as one of the biggest IT challenges heading into the New Year.

UK businesses are concerned about the implications of GDPR – something that New Zealand businesses should also keep in mind.

“It’s also rather worrying that – six months on – 40% of SME’s are still unsure about the rules and regulations surrounding GDPR. Over the past 18 months, I’ve spent a lot of time working closely with SMEs to ensure they are fully compliant – and it isn’t as daunting as it may seem,” says Stellakis.

“The appointment of a dedicated IT provider or GDPR officer – either in-house or externally –  is often left until something goes wrong. But, as the news has been filled with reports of cyber-attacks and GDPR fines over the past few months, it should be all SME owners’ New Year’s resolution to ensure their company – and reputation – remains intact in 2019.”