Scottish Cyber Essentials Deadline is Approaching- Gain a competitive edge with Cybersecurity

The October deadline for Scottish public sector bodies to achieve Cyber Essentials or Cyber Essentials Plus accreditation is rapidly approaching.

It’s not just organisations working with the government that should be demonstrating their commitment to cybersecurity if they want a competitive advantage.

It's not just Scotland who are making Cyber Essentials mandatory for suppliers and partners. The State of Jersey has also announced that it will no longer deal with any organisation that does not have Cyber Essentials +. The new rules kicks into force at the end of the year.

Gain a competitive advantage

Businesses that demonstrate they take cybersecurity seriously can gain a competitive advantage over their rivals. With consumers buying more goods online than ever before, they are also becoming increasingly cyber savvy.

According to data*, cybersecurity is now the third most important factor for consumers when it comes to them selecting a retailer, coming in just behind the availability and quality of products. Cybersecurity is now considered more important than even what discounts are offered and a brands reputation.

With cyber-attacks against large retailers making headlines on a regular basis and with consumers buying more goods online than ever before, it’s natural that the majority of consumers want to be assured that their data is safe.


Who would you rather do business with?

Being able to show that they take cybersecurity seriously gives businesses a definite advantage over the competition. After all, who would you rather do business with? An organisation that can clearly demonstrate that it takes the security of its customers data seriously or one that has shown little to no effort?

As Steve Woods, the deputy commissioner of policy at the Information Commissioners Office (ICO) said, “There is a major opportunity and competitive advantage for those who can demonstrate that they get data protection right. Through changing their data handline culture, organisations can derive new value from customer relationships.”


Well publicised data breaches such as the one that impacted TalkTalk in 2015 saw the company’s reputation take a huge hit among consumers resulting in more than 101,000 customers turning to their competitors.

Being able to demonstrate that your business is as secure as it can be, does matter.

SMEs are unprepared 

The Scottish Cyber Resilience scheme is aiming to achieve the Scottish government’s long-term goal of making the region a world leader when it comes to cyber resilience and therefore a more attractive place to do business. They face an uphill struggle, however, with the latest government data showing that 60% of SMEs have been breached in the past 12-months and 40% of all Scottish SMEs haven’t spent a penny on their IT security.

With the October deadline looming we could see a panicked response from those public sector bodies who have yet to get the Cyber Essentials accreditation process underway.


In need of Cyber Essentials Certification?

The move by the Scottish government goes a step further than the wider UK government who currently requires all suppliers bidding for contracts involving the handling of certain sensitive and personal information to be certified against the Cyber Essentials scheme.

XQ Cyber is an official Cyber Essentials certification body that can help your organisation or business become accredited.

By being Cyber Essentials certified your business will;

  • Become more competitive and attract more business as you will demonstrate that you have cybersecurity measures in place.
  • Assure customers that you are working to ensure that their data is safe in your hands.
  • Get a clear overview of your businesses cybersecurity posture.
  • Bid on government contracts that list Cyber Essentials certification as a requirement.

It’s not just schemes like Cyber Essentials that can help an organisation demonstrate that they take the cyber threat seriously.

Gain the advantage with CyberScore™

By using CyberScore™, a business is able to demonstrate improvements to its cybersecurity posture as well as measure the vulnerability of the organisation to attacks. It allows security teams to monitor and track the continuous remediation of vulnerabilities as well as provide evidence of the actions taken to secure the organisation.

Being able to demonstrate that the business regularly scans for weaknesses and monitors continuous improvement of security measures is a powerful statement to make if the worst were to happen and demonstrates to consumers that the business has done all it can to remediate the risks.

As the world becomes ever more interconnected via the internet the need to demonstrate whether you’re doing everything you can to be cyber secure is going to continue to grow in importance for businesses of all sizes. Get ahead of the curve and gain an advantage over your competitors.

Give XQ Cyber a call today!

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