Nearly 6 out of every 10 (58%) of the UK’s SMEs do not know who the relevant authorities are to help them deal with fraud, according to our latest research .

The results were obtained from the Close Brothers Business Barometer, a quarterly survey that questions over close to 1,000 UK and RoI SME owners and senior management across a range of sectors and regions.

With the value of reported fraud committed in the UK last year topping £1bn last year it’s critical that business owners know who the relevant authorities are, even if they haven’t been directly targeted. Much of this fraud was driven by an increase in cybercrime, highlighting the importance of having the correct online checks and balances in place.

Firms with 10 or fewer employees were the least likely to know who to contact, while regionally, businesses in the East Midlands were the least knowledgeable about fraud authorities.

Insurance against fraud

Only 35% of businesses are certain they are covered in the event of fraud, with 37% answering ‘no’ to the question ‘is your business insured against fraud?’; the remaining 28% ‘don’t know’.

For firms with a turnover of under £250k that figure halves to 18%. If you don’t know, then it’s worth checking your insurance policies to see whether you are insured against fraud, theft or dishonesty. This could be via a stand-alone policy or as part of an insurance product like home contents, travel, or legal expenses.