Introducing SMEs to cybersecurity

Bern, 11.06.2024 - The National Cyber Security Centre (NCSC) joined forces with the association ITSec4KMU to organise an awareness-raising event on cybersecurity for SMEs. This free event held at the Cinématte in Bern gave more than 100 interested representatives from SMEs an easy introduction to this important topic. There are plans to repeat the event in other regions of Switzerland.

For many small and medium-sized enterprises (SMEs), cyberattacks are still an abstract, intangible threat. Yet with just a few simple measures, a business can have good basic protection. This was the message of the brief welcome address given by Manuel Suter, Deputy Director of the NCSC, and René Hüsler, founding member of ITSec4KMU. Both emphasised how important it is for SMEs to address the issue of cybersecurity and that basic protection against cyberattacks can be achieved with simple, easy-to-implement measures.

From risk management to basic protection measures

In her presentation, Dominique Trachsel, head of Awareness-Raising and Prevention at the NCSC, outlined the current threat situation and the attack vectors affecting SMEs, and recommended that the event participants should integrate cybersecurity into their companies. The level of investment in cybersecurity measures depends on the individual appetite for risk. Andreas Grünert, head of Technologies and Security Engineering at NCSC, explained what basic protection measures against cyberattacks involve. He also explained the security standards relevant to SMEs and how these can be easily applied.

Cybersecurity with external support

For those SMEs that are keen to address the issue of cybersecurity but who would like to bring in external help to do so, ITSec4KMU's Nicolas Germiquet explained the key aspects of successful collaboration with an IT service provider. He emphasised the importance of certification confirming the expertise of IT service providers in these areas and referred to the register of certified IT service providers on the ITSec4KMU platform.

Many Swiss SMEs are already using cloud services from a range of providers for their digitalisation projects. Klaus Gribi, head of the Analysis Section at the NCSC, explained the procedure and some essential cloud security measures for SMEs. He also mentioned cloud security frameworks that are available to SMEs free of charge.

Towards the end of the event, the participants had the opportunity to explore one of two topics in greater depth. At sessions attended by experts Christophe Hauert from Cybersafe and René Buff from the Swiss Insurance Association, they were able to learn more about the importance of cybersecurity certificates for SMEs and hear about cyber insurance policies.

More events around Switzerland

SMEs clearly welcome support in dealing more consciously with cyber risks, as the great interest shown by the participants at that this event showed. There are plans to repeat the event in other regions of Switzerland.

About ITSec4KMU:
ITSec4KMU is an information platform for SMEs providing useful tips on cybersecurity and IT security. It has a series of information and checklists which help SMEs to equip themselves as well as possible against potential cyberattacks. In addition to news and event information, the platform contains an overview of IT service providers who can be contacted by SMEs with specific questions or in emergency situations. ITSec4KMU is an information platform only and does not itself offer any services to SMEs. The Canton of Zug has given ITSec4KMU around CHF 1.4 million of funding up to 2026 as part of the Zug+ programme. The platform is partnered by Lucerne University of Applied Sciences and Arts (HSLU) and the Swiss Academy of Engineering Sciences (SATW).

About the NCSC:
The National Cyber Security Centre is the federal government's competence centre for cybersecurity and thus the first point of contact for businesses, public services, educational institutions and the public for cyber-related issues. It is responsible for the coordinated implementation of the national cyberstrategy (NCS). The NCSC's main task is to make Switzerland more secure in cyberspace. To this end, it raises awareness and warns the public about cyberthreats and cyberattacks.

Address for enquiries

NCSC Communication:
+41 58 465 53 56

ITSec4KMU Communication:


National Cyber Security Centre

General Secretariat DDPS

Last modification 08.12.2020

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