Who to call if you’re struck by a cyber attack

Nearly a quarter of South West SMEs believe it is just a matter of time before they have a cyber-attack or data breach but admit that dealing with cyber-security isn’t a priority.

These were the worrying findings of a survey conducted by Bluegrass IT and revealed at their excellent 2019 South West Cyber Security Conference.

A ransomware attack could shut your IT system down in minutes claimed Tim Jeffcoat from business continuity and disaster recovery specialists datto.co.uk, who have calculated that the average cost of  IT downtime to an SME in the UK is a painful £7,000 per hour.

As well as advice on how to prevent an attack, delegates were  instructed on ‘How to respond in the event of a data breach’ by Bluegrass Group MD David Thomas and solicitor Tom Chartres-Moore from Stephens Scown. Both have dealt with a number of data breaches with Tom disclosing that he had dealt with over 180 since the new GDPR regulations had come into action.

They recommend carrying 3 emergency telephone numbers – written in a diary as well as contacts on a mobile phone. They are:

  1. your IT support company
  2. your solicitor
  3. your insurance company.

I’d like to add a 4th emergency service – a professional strategic communications company, a public relations consultant or an internal head of communications. Good communications, internally and externally, are essential in the event of a cyber security breach.

Having a cohesive communications plan in place to be used in the event of any kind of crisis is critical. Clear and consistent messages for staff, customers, stakeholders, suppliers or partners will need to be delivered with a matter of urgency if a data breach or cyber-attack has occurred and you might not be able to rely on email or databases held on your IT system.

In a recent survey published in the Sunday Times, reputational damage was the second most concerning consequence for business executives following a cyber-attack and 75% of consumers claim they would not buy from a company, no matter how good it was, if it was perceived that they weren’t protecting their data according to a IBM Harris survey.

To mitigate the consequences of a cyber-attack, KOR works with clients create a ‘fire policy’ – a document that can be held by key members of the team with clear instructions and contact details of what to do and what to say if the worst happens.  We also take into account how best to deal with media interest in your bad news.

Although the media spotlight may only focus on your business for a short space of time, the fallout could potentially last for years.

Prepare for the worst and hope for the best.

Latest blogs

KOR Communications is proud to have been shortlisted for the 2017 PRide Awards for our entry into the STEM Campaign category with ‘Exeter Science Park: A formula for growth'.

24 July 2017

We look at three crisis communications lessons that can be learnt from President Nixon’s ‘in the event of a moon disaster’ speech.

23 July 2019

Using pictures to tell stories about your business is a smart way of getting across a message with impact. Capturing your audience’s attention with compelling images will draw them into your story and tempt them to find out more.

15 April 2019

The threat of negative comment can make business owners nervous about social media but you can turn it around and demonstrate excellent customer service, turning a complaint into a compliment.

16 May 2019

© 2019 KOR Communications

The West Wing

Old Broadclyst Station


Devon EX5 3AS

De Beauvoir Block

92-96 De Beauvoir Road

London N1 4EN

Accept Cookies

This website uses cookies to help us know a little bit about you, how you use our website and improve the browsing experience. Manage cookies.