Small firms warned over
© 2002 BBC
Thursday, 9th November 2002 [Excerpt] - Smaller businesses do not
have adequate defences against the increasing threat from electronic attacks
by terrorists, the British Chambers of Commerce has warned. The fears come
after a report found small and medium-sized British companies are increasingly
vulnerable to pro-Islamic hackers who want to disrupt or destroy businesses.
Since May Islamic hacking groups have been working together and widening
their targets, according to the leading internet security group mi2g.
In one week alone in October it found there were 124 attacks on British websites
by one pro-Islamic hacking group.
Sally Low, Director of External Affairs and Policy at the British Chambers
of Commerce, said the threat should be taken more seriously.
Her organisation surveyed nearly 3,000 small and medium sized businesses
about computer-related crime. Of those that reported being victims of such
crime most suffered from hacking and viruses. Others were affected by credit
card fraud. She said the problem had worsened as more and more businesses
went online. Smaller companies' links with larger customers and bigger companies,
for example by putting on web links to their sites, made them more exposed
to international viruses like the Code Red virus.
"Most businesses do not believe that they
will be a target and they think their anti-virus software is sufficient,"
she said. "They need to invest
as much as they can possibly afford in ensuring that they have adequate firewall
protection in place in their company. "The cost in terms of lost revenue
is significant and is increasing".
mi2g works closely with government agencies and businesses to monitor
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