Cybercrime is a serious threat to any organisation – and charities are no exception. The good news is, there’s a wealth of websites, reports, training materials and other resources available to help small charities and community organisations be better informed about cyber security.
To help you know where to go for advice and guidance, we’ve signposted some of the best cyber security resources below. These will help you understand what steps your organisation needs to put in place to minimise the risk of – and exposure to – cybercrime.
Top tips to stay cyber-safe:
- The National Cyber Security Centre is the UK’s independent authority on cyber security. Their Small Charity guide has been produced to help charities protect themselves from the most common cyberattacks. This easy-to-understand guide covers five topics that cost little (or nothing) to implement: backing up your data; malware protection; keeping smartphones/tablets safe; using passwords; and avoiding phishing attacks.
- Register for the free Charity Fraud Awareness Hub. This offers a wealth of free digital resources, including help sheets, case studies, webinars and tutorials, to help you better understand the mindset of fraudsters and how to beat them. Compiled by the Fraud Advisory Panel, the Charity Commission for England and Wales, and UK Finance.
- The Charity Commission for England and Wales has a whole host of regularly updated, useful information about fraud and cybercrime, how to spot it, and what you can do to protect against it. If you’re based in Scotland, take a look here.
- Get your employees and volunteers trained up so they understand the crucial role they have to play. The National Cyber Security Centre has created a free-to-access e-learning package: ‘Stay Safe Online: Top Tips for Staff’. It’s easy to understand, easy to use, and takes less than 30 minutes to complete. For other, more specific free e-learning resources, visit https://www.fraudadvisorypanel.org/charity-fraud/resources/ – and for face-to-face training options, the Foundation for Social Improvement and NCVO often offer low-cost, if not free, events.
- Does your trustee board understand the criticality of cyber security and what questions to ask? The National Cyber Security Centre (NCSC) board toolkit covers a range of cyber security topics, including: an introduction to cyber security (specifically written for board members); understanding the threat; collaborating with suppliers and partners; and planning a response to a cyber incident. This straightforward guidance offers helpful questions that board members can ask those running the organisation. It can also be adapted to fit your own charity’s culture and priorities, and has been created using insights from boards about what they would like to know.
- Finally, cyber security doesn’t need to be expensive. Visit https://charitydigitalexchange.org/ for access to heavily discounted and donated software from the likes of Google, Microsoft, Adobe, Cisco and more.