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New National Cyber Advisory Board urges ‘Whole of Society’ approach as UK becomes third most targeted nation



The New National Cyber Advisory Board met on Tuesday to discuss how to protect the UK from growing cyber threats, urging for a ‘Whole of Society’ approach to be taken to cybersecurity as the UK becomes the third most targeted nation.

The Board met following new data from the Office of National Statistics which revealed that only the USA and Ukraine face more cyber threats than the UK and that there were 2.7 million cyber-related frauds between April 2021 and March 2022.

Cybersecurity expert Achi Lewis, Area VP EMEA for Absolute Software, commented: “Cybersecurity is more important than ever due to devices being spread out through work from anywhere, budget cuts in difficult economic times, and now the UK being announced as the third most targeted nation. It is essential that organisations re-evaluate and level up their cyber defences to ensure that they are prepared to both prevent and recover from threats when they occur.”

“It is encouraging to see the new National Cyber Advisory Board promoting a whole society approach, as any organisation and any employee can be the target of a cyber-attack. Cyber training can help staff to understand and detect potential threats, whilst looking to automation, upskilling, and outsourcing can offer cost-effective ways of maintaining a strong security posture. This should be combined with technology to maximise threat prevention and recovery.”

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“In a work-from-anywhere world, for example,  Zero Trust Network Access (ZTNA), rather than a traditional VPN for remote access to an organisation’s network, can provide secure access for staff through the principles of Zero Trust. Each user can be authorised on a context-based basis, rather than an ‘all-or-nothing’ approach, and monitored for suspicious activity should they access an unauthorised application for instance. Suspicious users can then be timed out, or shut off by a centralised IT team, in order to protect the network from a costly breach.”

The National Cyber Advisory Board is co-chaired by the Chancellor of the Duchy and Lancaster, Oliver Dowden, and Chief Information Officer at Lloyds Banking Group, Sharon Barber.

Chair of the Board, Oliver Dowden, said: “Protecting and promoting the UK’s interests in cyberspace cannot be achieved in isolation, it must be a shared endeavour between government and all parts of the economy and society. We have seen how cyber-attacks are increasing, putting the UK and our businesses and services on the frontline of global threats. That’s why this new National Cyber Advisory Board is so important, bringing leaders from across industry, the third sector, and academia to share information and expertise on how to build and protect our digital economy and services.”

The Board aims to deliver on the UK’s National Cyber Strategy which seeks to make the UK a leading cyber power by 2030. They are due to meet every quarter with the next meeting expected in Q1 of 2023.


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