Cyber Essentials accreditation

Demonstrate your commitment to business-wide cyber security. With a Cyber Essentials accreditation or Cyber Essentials Plus certification, your customers, suppliers and workforce are reassured that your business takes cyber security and the protection of their personal data, seriously.

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What is Cyber Essentials?

Cyber Essentials Accreditation is a UK government-backed scheme that is intended to be a simple but effective first step for businesses and organisations (like yours!) to improve their cyber security.

The Cyber Essentials accreditation involves a questionnaire that identifies vulnerabilities in IT systems and implements basic security controls to mitigate those risks. However, businesses and organisations dealing with high volumes of personal data may wish to obtain a Cyber Essentials certification, which involves an independent assessment by an accredited certification body.

As one of the UK’s leading providers of cyber security services, Focus Group is well placed to guide your business through the correct steps to achieve cyber accreditation, with our Cyber Essentials and Cyber Essentials Plus services.

Our certified cyber consultants will use the latest cyber security tools to review and monitor your IT infrastructure to ensure your systems, team, corporate domains, business credentials and data are protected at all times.

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Why should you become cyber essentials certified?

Being Cyber Essentials certified is crucial for businesses in today's digital landscape and helps businesses protect against ever evolving cyber security threats. The Cyber Essentials certification provides clear statement of the basic controls and awareness training businesses should have in place to protect themselves and demonstrates a commitment to cyber security best practices, safeguarding businesses against common cyber threats.

By obtaining this certification, businesses can enhance their reputation and build trust with customers, partners, and stakeholders, providing assurance that appropriate security measures are in place to protect sensitive data and mitigate the risk of falling victim to cyber attacks.

Cyber Essentials certification will also help identify vulnerabilities in your network and implement necessary controls, ensuring a robust cybersecurity posture. Ultimately, being Cyber Essentials certified not only safeguards the business but also instils confidence in clients and partners, leading to increased opportunities and a competitive advantages in the market.

The benefits of gaining a Cyber Essentials Accreditation

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Unleash new opportunities

Cyber Essentials accreditation provides your growing business with new opportunities. With the assurance that your business data is securely stored and protected, you can free up time and resources to focus on the growth of your business.

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Increased understanding of cyber security

Our certified cyber consultants will help you to understand the various ways you can keep your business network and overall cyber environment secure by talking you through the implementation of firewalls, secure configuration, access controls, and malware protection.

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Reassure new and existing customers

By obtaining a Cyber Essentials Accreditation or Cyber Essentials Plus Certification, organisations can demonstrate their cyber security competence and reassure their customers that their IT systems are robust enough to withstand cyber-attacks.

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Gain competitive advantage

Cyber essentials accreditation helps implement robust cyber security measures and a culture of cyber and GDPR awareness, meaning businesses can safeguard their sensitive data, intellectual property, and customer information from potential breaches and cyber attacks. This not only protects the business's reputation but also instils confidence in customers, partners, and stakeholders, giving you the competitive edge.

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Join a trusted supplier register

For the 12 months your Essentials Certificate is valid, your business will be listed on the National Cyber Security Centre website. Allowing customer and potential prospects to easily check your cyber security credentials and validate your business. Additionally, this will also qualify your business for bidding towards public sector contracts, which gives the opportunity to work on large scale projects and build public sector relationships.

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Strengthen you supply chain

It is important that your partners, suppliers and investors have confidence in your ability to safely and security do business in today’s digital landscape. Having a recognised Cyber Essentials Certification validates your processes and ensures that stakeholders know you operate with their best interests at heart. This can also be paired with a supplier risks assessment, allowing your business to gain insight into the security of 3rd parties your work with.

What are the different types of certification?

Focus Group offer Cyber Essentials and Cyber Essentials Plus services. Each one with the option to add GDPR assurance. We’ll provide all the expert support your business needs to pass the first time. Reducing the risk of your business being targeted by cybercrime and increasing consideration from new customers.

Cyber Essentials certification

Obtaining cyber essentials accreditation is a critical step for businesses and organisations aiming to demonstrate their commitment to safe and reliable cyber security. The certification process involves a technical assessment of the organisation's IT systems, including the implementation of firewalls, secure configuration, access controls, and malware protection.

Our certified consultants will provide guidance and support remotely, over the phone, or via email, taking you through each step to achieve cyber accreditation.

Once the assessment is complete, you will be awarded the Cyber Essentials certification if you have demonstrated compliance with the technical controls. The certification is valid for one year, after which you must undergo a reassessment to maintain the certification.

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Cyber Essentials Plus certification

Cyber Essentials Plus is an extension of the UK government's Cyber Essentials scheme that provides a more in-depth assessment of an organisation's IT systems and cyber security controls.

Unlike the basic Cyber Essentials certification, which is based on a questionnaire, Cyber Essentials Plus involves an on-site assessment of your business IT systems from our cyber security specialists. The assessment includes the same testing from the questionnaire, in addition to testing your business’s processes for managing vulnerabilities, patch management, and incident management.

We’ll advise of any areas of exposure which may result in your business not achieving the accreditation and guide you through the remediation steps you’ll need to take to be awarded this higher level of certification.

Once the assessment is complete, the organisation will be awarded a Cyber Essentials Plus certification if they have demonstrated compliance with the scheme's technical and process-based controls. The certification is valid for one year, after which the organisation must undergo a reassessment to maintain the certification. Cyber Essentials Plus certification is intended for organisations that handle sensitive information and may have a higher risk of cyber-attacks.

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Frequently asked questions

Cyber Essentials is a UK government scheme which outlines the fundamental steps businesses need to take to secure their systems. These include firewalls, secure configuration, user access control, malware protection and patch management. It’s worth remembering that the technology used for security is only as effective as the people using it. So, employee awareness training should be seen as the sixth control in ensuring cyber security.

Cyber Essentials sets out five technical cyber security controls that all organisations can implement to achieve a solid foundation of cyber security. ISO 27001 goes considerably further by providing 114 security controls which encompass people, processes and technology.

Cyber Essentials includes access to the questionnaire with the guidance and support of a cyber security specialist from Focus Group, as well as recommendations for improvements and if successful a 12-month valid Cyber Essentials certification.

Using the NCSC Government website, you can query businesses by name to check for their Cyber Essentials certificate.

An online attack can result in your business being exposed to viruses, data breaches, malware, loss of connectivity and – in many cases – a financial impact. Your reputation is also at risk if customer data is compromised. So, if your business relies on the internet, email or cloud services and handles sensitive or personal data, it’s crucial you do all you can to protect your business against cybercrime.

Cyber Security Essentials is a key cyber accreditation but one which can be undertaken swiftly and easily. Our certified consultants will provide guidance and support remotely, over the telephone or via email, to take you through the cyber essentials questionnaire. Cyber accreditation in under 24hours!

Core differences include the type of assessment and the levels of verification that are checked in order to prevent cyber security exploitations.

You can apply for a reassessment with Focus Group and our cyber security consultants will assist you in re-taking the questionnaire.

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