18 November 2016

National Cybersecurity Strategy 2016-2021

The UK Government recently delivered their new National Cyber Security Strategy for the next five years. In pursuing their aim to make the UK a leading place to do digital business, the Government has a responsibility to secure cyberspace and make the whole country a safe place to do digital business in.

The National Cyber Security Strategy (NCSS) has three central strands – Defend, Deter, Develop – supported by £1.9 billion of investment. Across these three core areas are several strategic outcomes.

Defend. The government wants to improve national cyber defences, by both reducing the impact of attacks and increasing security standards. In order to defend effectively, the government recognises that a more active cyber defence needs to be implemented, one which will develop automated defences to identify and neutralise attacks before they reach the user. First and foremost, the Government is aiming to make sure that their own networks and services will be as secure as possible from the moment of first implementation. It has pledged to lead by example, and reassure the general public that they can use government services with confidence.

Deter. The government seeks to deter those wanting to challenge UK digital activity in cyberspace. Deterrence of any malicious intent in the cyber sphere is key to controlling and defending UK cyberspace. A more aggressive stance will be taken against cyber criminality by strengthening law enforcement capabilities and making it easier to uncover and prosecute criminals. In addition, the government has pledged to invest in offensive cyber strategy as part of the deterrence pillar.

Develop. Development is all about investing in the future of cyber defences. As cyber crime becomes ever more sophisticated, the UK’s defences need to become more sophisticated too. The NCSS once again emphasises the need to increase the number of digital risk and cyber-skilled professionals in the UK. To achieve this, the government is investing in students, industry experts and building relationships with businesses. In helping to develop the UK’s cyber strategy and defences, international action will also be paramount.

The government’s strategic outcomes directly reflect IRM’s own commitment to developing experts and expertise in the digital risk and cyber security sphere, as we want the UK to be recognised as a global pioneer in cyber research and development.