Prime minister David Cameron has unveiled a number of new tools to help UK businesses defend themselves against cyber crime. It comes as the government also announced new support for UK cyber security firms that want to trade overseas.
Cameron has announced the appointment of Andy Williams, a new cyber security envoy, who will help British small businesses and first-time exporters in the cyber security field to promote their business interests in the US.
The UK cyber security sector is worth over £6 billion, employing 40,000 people. UK cyber security exports increased 22% from £850 million to over £1 billion during 2013 and are on track to meet a target of £2 billion by 2016.
Business Secretary Vince Cable said: “Our businesses earn £1 in every £5 from the internet, so it’s vital that we work with them to combat online crime, and make sure large and small firms alike are protected. The measures we’re announcing today will boost the UK cyber security industry and ensure UK businesses can continue to stay safe and thrive online.”
This week also saw the launch of new government support designed to keep all UK businesses safe in cyberspace. The measures include:
- An updated 10 Steps to Cyber Security guide with case studies and advice on how to tackle the main cyber crime threats;
- New research from the Department for Business, Innovation and Skills (BIS) that illustrates how top UK companies are successfully tackling cyber crime;
- A new report from GCHQ that explains how to prevent common cyber attacks.
David Cameron said: “We need to make sure the UK remains one of the most cyber secure places in the world to do business. It’s great news that even more companies have signed up to our Cyber Essentials Scheme to keep themselves safe and we will continue to invest in supporting companies of all sizes with their cyber security.”
The Cyber Essentials Scheme was launched in June 2014 and provides a set of basic controls to help businesses protect themselves against the most common cyber threats. GCHQ research shows that around 80% of cyber attacks could be prevented if businesses put simple security controls in place.
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