Cyberattacks are on the rise globally, affecting all types of organisations. Non-profits, including those in Oxfordshire and the Thames Valley, are no exception. Recent data shows that cyberattacks increased by 125% in the first half of 2021. Threat actors target non-profits due to the sensitive data they hold, including casework records on beneficiaries. These breaches can harm both the organisation and the individuals it serves.

Understanding the Landscape

Non-profits in Thames Valley serve as vital pillars of the community, championing causes ranging from environmental conservation to social justice. However, the very nature of their altruistic endeavours can inadvertently expose them to cyber threats. Limited budgets, reliance on volunteers, and a lack of dedicated IT personnel render them susceptible to phishing scams, data breaches, and ransomware attacks.

OxCyber recognises the multifaceted challenges non-profits in Thames Valley face:

Limited Resources: Tight budgets often leave non-profits unable to invest in robust cybersecurity measures.

Lack of Expertise: Many non-profits lack in-house IT expertise to navigate the complexities of cybersecurity.

Volunteer Vulnerability: Relying on volunteers increases the risk of human error leading to security breaches.

Data Sensitivity: Non-profits handle sensitive data, making them attractive targets for cybercriminals.

Despite the daunting challenges, OxCyber along with other organisations offer a beacon of hope by providing guidance and free resources to fortify the cybersecurity posture of our region’s non-profits. Here a few other agencies non-profits can turn to for help who also share our mission.

National Cyber Security Centre (NCSC)

The National Cyber Security Centre (NCSC) is a UK government agency dedicated to cybersecurity. It provides advice, guidance, products, and services to make the UK the safest place to live and work online. Here are some key points about the NCSC:

Mission: The NCSC aims to protect individuals, businesses, and the public sector from cyber threats.

Services: It offers advice on topics such as smart devices, incident response, and cloud security.

Resources: The NCSC provides useful resources, including infographics and practical guidance.

You can find more information on their official website: National Cyber Security Centre.

South East Cyber Resilience Centre

The South East Cyber Resilience Centre (SECRC) is a police-led, not-for-profit partnership that helps protect businesses against fraud and cybercrime. It serves businesses in Hampshire, Isle of Wight, Sussex, Surrey, Buckinghamshire, Oxfordshire, and Berkshire. Here’s what you need to know:

Services: SECRC offers testing, training, risk management, and guidance in cybersecurity.

Website Assessment: As a business owner, you can assess your website’s security with their Website Assessment tool.

Mission: SECRC aims to improve cyber resilience in businesses across the South East of England.

Learn more about their services and resources on the South East Cyber Resilience Centre website.

UK Cyber Security Council

The UK Cyber Security Council is the self-regulatory body for the UK’s cybersecurity profession. Its purpose is to develop, promote, and steward nationally recognised standards for cybersecurity. Here are the key points:

Mission: The Council supports the UK Government’s National Cyber Security Strategy to make the UK the safest place to live and work online.

Framework: It sets out comprehensive career pathways, certifications, and qualifications required within different levels of expertise.

Professional Development: The Council encourages professionals to become chartered and offers resources for career development.

For more details, visit the UK Cyber Security Council website.

Remember, cybersecurity is crucial for non-profits, and leveraging these resources can help protect your organisation and its stakeholders. If you have any further questions, feel free to ask us we are happy to help!