Royal & SunAlliance (R&SA) has urged firms to protect themselves from the risk of damage from yob behaviour.

Research commissioned by the insurer found that the average cost to businesses affected by yob behaviour last year was £2,300.

Firms in Scotland were worst affected, with yob behaviour costing an average of £7,000 a year. Next was the East of England (£3,000 a year), then London and the South East (£2,500 a year).

The retail and consumer sector was the hardest hit with an average cost per year per firm affected of £5,000.

R&SA commercial director Brendan McManus said efforts were needed to "reduce costs to businesses which come directly out of their bottom lines".

He added: "Firms can take simple steps to diminish or prevent the risk of damage caused by yob behaviour."