CYBER Insights » WHAT IS A ZERO-DAY ATTACK ND IS MY SME AT RISK? – Zero Day Resilience Building Robust Defences in the Cyber Age | Cyber KPIs

WHAT IS A ZERO-DAY ATTACK ND IS MY SME AT RISK? – Zero Day Resilience Building Robust Defences in the Cyber Age | Cyber KPIs

Zero Day KPI
Image Credit: Job Moses
Image Credit: Job Moses

KPI Explainer: What is a Zero-Day Attack? 

WHAT IS A ZERO-DAY ATTACK & Robust Defences in the Cyber Age – CyberKPI: “ZERO-DAY” is a broad term that describes recently discovered security vulnerabilities that hackers can use to attack systems. The term “zero-day” refers to the fact that the vendor or developer has only just learned of the flaw – which means they have “zero days” to fix it. A zero-day attack takes place when hackers exploit the flaw before developers have a chance to address it.

Guarding Your SME: Defending Against Zero-day Attacks in Europe

What is a Zero-day Attack and is my SME at Risk? could be: Learn about the hidden dangers of zero-day attacks and how SMEs in Europe are particularly vulnerable, along with mitigation strategies to protect your business.

Introduction to Zero-day Attacks

Zero-day attacks are clandestine cyberattacks that target vulnerabilities in software, hardware, or firmware that are unknown to the developers and, therefore, have no patches or fixes available. SMEs in Europe are particularly at risk from such attacks due to their limited resources and less robust cybersecurity measures compared to larger organisations. The National Cyber Security Centre (NCSC) underlines the significance of SMEs understanding and mitigating the risks associated with zero-day attacks to protect their businesses.

Understanding Zero-day Attacks

Zero-day attacks exploit undisclosed flaws in software, making them extremely difficult to detect and defend against. Skilled hackers and malicious organisations actively search for these vulnerabilities to gain financial benefits or strategic advantages. Notable instances of zero-day attacks include major companies like Sony Pictures Entertainment and Microsoft falling victim to significant breaches. These attacks can be perpetrated by cybercriminals, hacktivists, or for corporate espionage, showcasing the various motives behind such threats.

Impact on SMEs in Europe

For SMEs in Europe, zero-day vulnerabilities present serious security risks as they can be exploited by attackers for immediate access to their systems. Recent incidents of zero-day attacks in Europe highlight the vulnerabilities faced by SMEs in the region. SMEs often lack the resources to invest in advanced cybersecurity solutions, making them more susceptible to such attacks.

Mitigation Strategies for SMEs

Protecting against zero-day exploits involves proactive measures such as monitoring for unusual activities, implementing network segmentation, and using exploit mitigation tools like Microsoft’s EMET. Key steps for SMEs to defend against zero-day attacks include keeping all software up to date, utilising robust security software, and deploying intrusion detection systems. Educating employees on cybersecurity best practices is crucial for SMEs to enhance their resilience against zero-day threats. Additionally, collaborating with cybersecurity experts can help SMEs conduct vulnerability assessments and implement tailored security measures.

Key Considerations for SMEs in Europe

SMEs in Europe should establish specific incident response plans tailored to zero-day attacks to minimise potential damages. Providing regular cybersecurity training for employees can assist SMEs in recognising and responding effectively to zero-day threats. Collaborating with industry peers and engaging in information sharing can bolster SMEs‘ collective defence against zero-day attacks and enhance their overall cybersecurity posture.


In conclusion, SMEs in Europe must prioritise cybersecurity measures to shield themselves against the evolving threat landscape, including zero-day attacks. Continuous monitoring, timely software updates, and proactive security measures are essential for SMEs to mitigate the risks associated with zero-day attacks effectively. Seeking guidance from cybersecurity professionals and staying informed about emerging threats are crucial steps for SMEs to safeguard their businesses successfully. Download KPI/… Register Free to Download this KPI 

RECOMMENDED READING: Zero Day Resilience Building Robust Defenses in the Cyber Age

The ground-breaking “Zero Day Resilience: Building Robust Defences in the Cyber Age” by Jia Patel examines the essential methods for coping with the dynamic and ever-changing field of cybersecurity. Given the prevalence of cyber dangers in the modern world, Patel offers a thorough guide to protecting information infrastructure from hackers, with a focus on the enigmatic “zero-day” flaws that can compromise even the most robust systems.

Learn More /…

A zero-day (also known as a 0-day) is a vulnerability or security hole in a computer system unknown to its owners, developers or anyone capable of mitigating it.  The term “zero-day” originally referred to the number of days since a new piece of software was released to the public, so “zero-day software” was obtained by hacking into a developer’s computer before release. Eventually the term was applied to the vulnerabilities that allowed this hacking, and to the number of days that the vendor has had to fix them. Zero-day attacks are severe threats.

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