Cyber Liability Claims

Cyber Attack

When you think about cyber attacks, you probably think about the big data breaches. Snapchat. Equifax. The NHS. They might make the headlines, but in reality cyber criminals are targeting small and medium-sized businesses at a rapid clip.

Why? Smaller businesses are seen as easier targets, but they’re also often used as stepping stones to the larger organisations they invariably work with.

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Increase in Cyber Attacks Continues

Cyber Attacks

We’ve spoken about the prevalence of cyber attacks on these pages before. As we become ever more reliant on digital platforms, we leave ourselves more and more susceptible to the possibility of having our data breached.

Whether it’s a hallowed institution like the NHS or a corporate monolith like Snapchat seems to make little difference. The only prerequisite for becoming a target is inadequate protection and preparation.

We build our houses on firm foundations and plan our skyscrapers down to the final millimetre, but there are always flaws. The digital world, a superstructure of infinite proportions, is no different. As hard as we try there will always be a backdoor or an exploit somewhere waiting to be found.

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4 must-know tips from seasoned freelancers

Freelancer Advice

If you’re new to freelancing or contracting and you’re after some advice from seasoned professionals then today’s your lucky day!

We recently took some time to gather a few of the best tips a new freelancer or contractor could possibly wish for.

We spoke to a number of contractors and freelancers who have all been there and done it. Read on for their advice.

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4 things no one tells you about becoming a freelancer

Freelancing Tips

Thinking of taking your career into your own hands? If you’re toying with the idea of becoming a contractor or freelancer, there are a few things that are useful to know before you start. Read on below and see if it’s still the career for you!

You actually don’t need much money to start

To start freelancing you don’t need a whole load of money, but you do need bags of passion and enough time to invest in your new business. Time has to be spent on building yourself a presence and being driven enough to submit proposal after proposal, even when you get knocked back time and time again. Passion certainly conquers all in this game and if you’re doing what you love, it’ll keep you interested and motivated to always do better.

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The Future of Contracting

iContract Kingsbridge

We asked our good friends at iContract to put together a blog post for us on their platform and how it fits in with the future of contracting. Read on below for more!

It was recently reported that by 2020 50% of the UK working population will be self-employed. A quite staggering prediction, but also inspiring knowing that many people in today’s workforce want to enjoy the many benefits that come with working for yourself.

Giving evidence to this statistical claim is the rise of contracting. Contracting is proving to be a popular career choice for many, particularly in the financial and tech sectors. Despite being an industry that has experienced its fair share of headlines this year with changes to IR35, the Government u-turn over National Insurance contributions, and the ongoing Brexit debate, contracting still shows no signs of slowing down. It has been reported that the traditionally slower months of summer are still showing a healthy demand when it comes to hiring contractors this year.

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The Cost of Setting Out

Setting Out

If you’re a setting out engineer it’s more than likely you’ve seen a rise in your insurance premiums recently (or, in some cases, a point-blank refusal from insurers to provide appropriate cover).

Whilst the exact reasons for changes in average premiums are down to each insurer, it’s more than likely that the industry has seen an uptick in claims made against setting out engineers recently. Couple that with the risks that are often associated with such a precise task, and an unfortunate recipe for increased cost is created.

That’s where we come in. You might have seen our price promise already, but it’s worth reiterating. In the event that you find the same policy cover at a lower price with another UK company, we’ll refund the difference. It’s that simple.

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5 Tax Planning Tips for Contractors and Freelancers

Tax Planning Tips

As a contractor or freelancer, just hearing the word tax can fill you with panic – but there’s really nothing to worry about! We’ve outlined some basic tips for new contractors and freelancers below. They should help you prepare and manage your taxes easily and efficiently.

1. Set up a business bank account

Having a separate business bank account may seem like something that doesn’t really apply to you as a contractor or freelancer – why can’t you just use your current account? Having a business bank account means you can work out what money is coming in for your business and what money you’re spending.

Who has time to trawl through their personal bank account sifting through your supermarket purchases to try and find all business-related transactions? It makes working out your income and expenditure sheets so much easier.

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5 Essential Skills Every Contractor Should Have

5 Essential Skills

Don’t panic if you don’t have all of the skills below yet. These are just a few of the many qualities that help to secure work and deliver the project on time, as well as helping to deliver the best possible results for your clients.

Become a great communicator

You need to be a great communicator when you’re a contractor. Now that you’re wholly and solely responsible for your income you need to step up your confidence level when it comes to communication. If you don’t communicate regularly with your clients they can feel as though they’ve slipped through the net.

Keeping your clients engaged and informed as often as possible means less mistakes get made whilst also ensuring that you’re setting realistic expectations for throughout the project.

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General Election 2017: Party Manifestos and the Self-Employed

General Election

The Importance of the Self-Employed

We’ve already taken a broader look at what might lie ahead for contractors after Thursday’s General Election. But what about the vote itself? With the polls opening nationwide tomorrow join us as we breakdown the manifestos of each major party (Church of the Militant Elvis Party, this doesn’t include you.)

Before we begin it’s worth noting that the self-employed are likely to have more clout in certain areas of the UK. IPSE recently put together their election breakdown, using constituency data and ONS population statistics to work out where the voice of contractors and freelancers will matter the most.

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2017 General Election – What Should Contractors Expect?

General Election

In light of recent events in London and Manchester talking about politics seems rather redundant. But as we have heard time and again over the last few days and weeks, we must persevere. The UK moves forward scarred and damaged but defiant. At the time of writing this it appears that Thursday’s General Election is very much on.

As Simon McVicker, IPSE’s Director of Policy, pointed out back in April, no one outside of Mrs. May’s immediate cabinet saw an election on the horizon. Back then a Conservative walkover appeared to be a formality but, 6 weeks later, it seems far from a foregone conclusion.

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