UK Government Announces New Cyber Strategy to Protect Public Sector

UK Government Announces New Cyber Strategy to Protect Public Sector

The UK government has unveiled its first ever cybersecurity strategy, which aims to protect essential public sector services from being shut down by hostile threat actors.

In a speech in London today, Chancellor of the Duchy of Lancaster Steve Barclay announced £37.8m in funding to help local authorities boost their cyber-resilience. This will protect essential services and data, such as housing benefits, voter registration, electoral management, school grants and the provision of social care.

Barclay announced a raft of other initiatives to go alongside this funding commitment. This includes a new Government Cyber Coordination Centre (GCCC) to better coordinate responses to attacks on public sector systems and a cross-government vulnerability reporting service to enable security researchers and the public to easily report issues they identify with public sector digital services. In addition, a more detailed assurance regime will be implemented across central government departments.

The strategy is designed to combat surging cyber-attacks on the UK public sector in recent years. Notable examples include the ransomware attacks on Redcar & Cleveland and Hackney Councils in 2020, causing significant disruption and recovery costs. The government revealed that of the 777 incidents managed by the National Cyber Security Centre (NCSC) between

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