The Scottish Government has launched a grants scheme to help charities boost their cyber resilience.

Managed by the Scottish Council for Voluntary Organisations (SCVO), the scheme will support charities with grants of up to £1,000 to help them achieve cyber essentials accreditation.

Cyber security threats are growing, but many charities still haven’t taken the basic actions they need to protect themselves. Research published in 2017 showed that while one in five UK charities had reported a cyber breach, just over half identified cyber security as a key priority, and almost three quarters hadn’t invested in cyber security.

Cabinet Secretary for Communities and Local Government, Aileen Campbell said: “The Scottish Government is delighted to provide this £500,000 fund to help charities and small to medium-sized businesses to further improve their cyber security.

“The valuable funds, assets and good reputation of charities are at risk from the increasing threat of cyber-crime and our scheme offers grants up to £1,000 towards Cyber Essentials Accreditation, protecting against the most common forms of internet-borne cyber-attacks. This demonstrates to supporters, donors and beneficiaries that charities take protecting their data seriously. I would strongly encourage organisations in the third sector to consider their own cyber resilience by making use of this grant and utilise the excellent resources and support available from SCVO.”

David McNeill, SCVO Digital Director, said: “Charities are increasingly vulnerable to cyber risks so it’s really important that they take action to keep themselves and their data safe. We’re delighted to be launching this new grants round with the Scottish Government, and we’re looking forward to helping dozens of Scottish charities boost their cyber resilience.”

Larger charities or organisations which have already completed Cyber Essentials Accreditation can apply for Cyber Essentials Plus Accreditation, and IT suppliers can also apply on behalf of charities they are working with.

Find out more and apply for a cyber grant. Deadline for applications is 18 December 2018.