Cyber Essentials: Without it, you're not serious

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AT Sure Business, we want the service we provide to be as effective and seamless as possible. That’s why we only work with the best cybersecurity partners, such as Cisco, Trustwave and Mimecast.

By recently adding Culture AI and CyberTec, our impressive arsenal of solutions is expanding, ensuring our customers have peace of mind that they are working with the best.

What is Cyber Essentials?

With all this choice, where should you begin with your cybersecurity journey? Credentials are key, and the Cyber Essentials Certification is a great place to start. Sure Business now offers a simple but effective government-backed scheme through its partnership with CyberTec. Cyber Essentials helps you to protect your organisation, whatever its size, against a whole range of the most common cyber-attacks through affordable cyber protection.

Introduced in 2014 by the National Cyber Security Centre, in January 2023 they updated the scheme to ensure its continual relevance as the cyber threat landscape evolves. Designed to mitigate over 80% of threats, certified companies enjoy the peace of mind that they are able to prove to customers that their operations are trustworthy and secure.

Do I need another certification?

When looking for a potential supplier, valid and respected credentials can be make or break. Cyber Essentials is fast becoming a minimum requirement. Indeed, many public sector bodies will only deal with companies that are CE-accredited. At a time when cyber crime is at epidemic proportions, we all prefer to deal with companies that take security seriously.

The basic Cyber Essentials offers a base level online process and is checked by experts at Information Assurance for Small and Medium Enterprises Consortium to determine alignment with the standard. This gives certified protection against a wide variety of cyber threats and reduces the risk of a damaging cyber attack.

However, should you wish to upgrade, Cyber Essentials Plus provides the same approach and protection with an additional hands-on technical verification, involving an in-depth vulnerability scan and analysis of the organisation’s systems by a qualified assessor, who then personally verifies the business is compliant.

The essential five controls

There are five essential technical control areas that mitigate the majority of cyber attacks:

1. Update management

Ensuring systems and software are up to date and secure, preventing cyber criminals from exploiting vulnerabilities in your software to get into your systems.

2. User access

Controlling use of data and services based on levels of access. Ensuring employees only have access to the data they need by creating accounts with different levels of access and privilege, limiting the risk of accidental and malicious damage.

3. Firewalls and internet gateways

Secure, active and effective firewalls must be in place to create a security filter between the internet and the organisation’s network/devices.

4. Secure configuration

Settings and systems should be configured correctly, with secure device set-ups to minimise vulnerabilities and risk of exploitation by cyber criminals.

5. Malware protection

Systems must have adequate protection against malware and viruses, identifying and immobilising viruses and other malicious software before they have a chance to cause harm.

In summary, organisations who possess a Cyber Essentials certification are able to:

• Reassure customers that systems are protected against attacks from cyber-space.

• Attract new business with assurances that cybersecurity measures are in place.

• Provide clear evidence of the organisation’s cybersecurity protection level.

• Widen sales opportunities as customers increasingly require CE certification.

We realise that, for many small and medium-sized businesses, the detail required and information needed to get the accreditation may be a challenge. That is where we come in. Our Sure Business experts are on hand to offer this vital support and serve as a security audit for ongoing protection and assurance. Essentially, we give you the means to keep your data secure and safe.

If you would like to know more about Cyber Essentials and how we can ease you through the certification process, get in touch by emailing

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