The Charity Digital Podcast returns for our tenth instalment. Our regular podcast highlights the challenges facing the sector, and the successful organisations that overcome them.
This episode was produced in partnership with the National Cyber Security Centre: a governmental organisation that provides cyber security guidance and support for charities, SMEs, larger organisations, other government agencies and the general public.
This week’s episode is titled: ‘Cyber-security state of the nation.’’ On this episode, Charity Digital Marketing Manager Chris Hall is joined by Cub Llewelyn-Davies, Charity Sector Lead from the National Cyber Security Centre and Michala Liavaag, Head of Information, Governance and Security at Marie Curie, to discuss the state of the nation and review how successful charities were at combatting cyber-security in 2019. The panel also discusses what new threats to expect in 2020 and what resources are available to charities.
How did the charity sector deal with cyber security issues in 2019? In short, not very well. 44% of charities aren’t protecting themselves from cyber attacks simply because they don’t see themselves as being at risk. This means that charities present an attractive target for cyber criminals, leaving them vulnerable to costly security breaches (the average cost of a cyber breach to a charity in 2019 is nearly 10k).
There is a feeling among smaller charities, and those with limited resources or a wide base of service users, that cyber security simply isn’t a priority. But this can have devastating and costly repercussions.
In this episode, Chris recaps some of Charity Digital’s year-beginning predictions for charity cyber security in 2019:
‘At the beginning of last year, Charity Digital forecasted that 2019 would be a year of big risk for charities, with phishing being the primary issue, [and] email fraud getting more and more sophisticated as the year went on. We highlighted that 2019 would be the year that charities protected themselves as well with even more resources and training.’
One year on from this, we look back at ‘the good, the bad, and the ugly’ of charity cyber security in 2019.
Cub Llewelyn-Davies offered an even-handed assessment, reflecting that: ‘We’ve seen so many charities coming out for either events that we’re at or reading articles that we’ve done with organisations like Charity Digital.’
Despite increased interest and awareness within the sector, Cub noted that ‘unfortunately, as charities get better, and do more, criminals aren’t just going away. They are going to keep, unfortunately, committing cyber crime that does affect charities, and as a result, charities will fall victim: they’ll lose money, potentially data will be stolen.’
Michala Liavaag says that in her role as Head of Information, Governance and Security at Marie Curie, her team have seen ‘more sophisticated phishing emails, in terms of the language used… certainly picking up on people’s social media profiles and then targeting those emails very much towards individuals.’
As a charity digital leader at the front lines of combatting charity cyber crime, Michala is uniquely positioned to offer advice to charities. Michala advised that these scams can take the form of emails ‘trying to get people to change bank account details, transfer money, all that sort of thing.’
We also celebrated our 10th episode with a brand new segment (which Chris is very proud of) - Charity Digital or Charity Dodgy? Make sure to play along and let us know how you got on via twitter or email.
You can listen to the episode below:
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