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Plan? What plan? Around a quarter of European companies don't know what to do about hacks

Hayley Kirton
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Once the hackers get in, a lot of companies have no clue what to do (Source: Getty)

A worrying number of European companies have no plans for how to respond to cyber attacks, a study out today has found.

Just under half (44 per cent) of the firms surveyed as part of DLA Piper's European Technology Index 2016 revealed they were significantly concerned about the threat cyber crime posed to their business, but a quarter (25 per cent) also confessed they had no specific cyber-attack response plan in place.

Western European companies were the most likely to have no clue what to do should the worst happen, with just less than a third (31 per cent) saying they had no response plans.

Around three-quarters (73 per cent) of firms also said they felt fairly secure there would be no nasty cyber surprises in their near future.

Read more: Everything we know about the Yahoo hack - including how to protect yourself

However, DLA Piper warned such confidence might be misplaced, as nearly seven in ten attacks could easily bypass some of the common security measures, such as security software and strong passwords, firms are using to keep themselves safe.

"These statistics make for sober reading, cyber-crime is highly lucrative for the criminal fraternity, with a lower risk of capture or punishment than other crimes," cautioned Kit Burden, global co-head of the technology sector at DLA Piper. "It is imperative that organisations, regardless of size, give it the attention it deserves and put in place all necessary protocols, which they need to monitor and evolve as risks develop."

However, many firms also seemed determined to change their ways. Slightly under two-thirds (62 per cent) of those asked felt cyber security was an area with great potential for investment.

Read more: Cyber attack fears push up hack insurance

Meanwhile, earlier this month, it was revealed GCHQ was on the hunt for cutting edge startups to help it develop technology to fight cyber crime.

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