Cybersecurity Challenges and their impact on SMEs: COM³ partners with DINNOCAP to raise awareness and promote solutions

20 September 2021 - Published by P. Khodabakhsh
COM³ partner, Aalborg University, organized a seminar on September 16, 2021 about “Cybersecurity and SMEs in a transnational context”. The event is part of COM³ sister project, DINNOCAP.


One of the challenges in digitalization of Small and Medium Enterprises (SMEs) is how to deal with cybersecurity issues. Larger companies have specialized resources to deal with security. They also know how to comply with regulation and laws on how to handle end users’ and customers’ data in a proper manner. Most SMEs, however, do not have such resources and in most cases lack the competency to deal with the issues.

There are many stories of intruders that have hacked company systems and data with severe consequences for the businesses, e.g. financial costs in case of ransomwares, waste of time in cases of Denial of Service (DOS) attacks and loss of company data when Brute-force attack. In many cases, due to security issues and suboptimal processes in the companies, customer data are dealt with wrongly, resulting in comprising data protection and privacy regulations. This may have severe implications for the digitalization process in SMEs and can be seen as a barrier for the uptake of Information and Communication Technology (ICT).

During the seminar, experts of Aalborg University shared how knowledge derived from user-oriented research can be used by SMEs to adopt new technologies. They also provided COM³ and DINNOCAP partners and other industry associations with knowledge and inspiration for how to raise awareness and encourage SMEs to take up cybersecurity technologies.

As part of the COM³ project, Aalborg University is developing e-learning modules that will help local and regional authorities to better equip SMEs in rural areas against cybersecurity challenges.