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The Cyber Essentials Scheme

The Cyber Essentials Scheme

What is Cyber Essentials?

Cyber Essentials is a simple but effective, Government backed scheme that will help you to protect your organisation, whatever its size, against a whole range of the most common cyber attacks.

Cyber threats are ever present, growing and do not discriminate by business sector or country borders. The UK Government has an ambition to make the UK the safest place to live and do business online. Cyber Essentials is a key tool in realising that ambition.

Cyber attacks come in many shapes and sizes, but the vast majority are very basic in nature, carried out by relatively unskilled individuals. They’re the digital equivalent of a thief trying your front door to see if it’s unlocked.

Cyber Essentials focuses on five important technical controls which are designed to guard against the most common internet based cyber security threats.

Why should you get Cyber Essentials?

  • Certified cyber security
  • Reassure customers that you are working to secure your IT against cyber attack
  • Attract new business with the promise you have cyber security measures in place
  • You have a clear picture of your organisation's cyber security level
  • Some contracts require Cyber Essentials certification

There are two levels of certification:

Cyber Essentials

The self-assessment option gives you protection against a wide variety of the most common cyber attacks. Cyber Essentials shows you how to address those basics and prevent the most common attacks.

Organisations assess themselves against five basic security controls and a qualified assessor verifies the information provided

Cyber Essentials Plus

Cyber Essentials Plus still has the Cyber Essentials trademark simplicity of approach, and the protections you need to put in place are the same, but for Cyber Essentials Plus a hands-on technical verification is carried out.

Getting Certified

The National Cyber Security Centre’s Cyber Essentials Partner are The IASME Consortium who are responsible for the delivery of the scheme.

The cost of Cyber Essentials Certification is a set price for Cyber Essentials which starts at £300 for Micro businesses with 0-9 employees and has a number of other tiers for Small, Medium and Large organisations. 

The cost of Cyber Essentials Plus is available on request as it depends on a number of things.

As a scheme, Cyber Essentials has grown to encompass a wider set of benefits. The assurance this certification provides has led to Cyber Essentials being either mandated or actively encouraged across an increasing number of private and public sector contracts. In that regard, it is a tool that can help organisations gain and retain business opportunities. It is also recognised by the Information Commissioner’s Office who outlined the schemes capacity to provide certain security assurances and help protect personal data in IT systems.

To start the process or for more information, please see the IASME website, or the NCSC