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Jamie Acutt | 4th February 2019

The EQ Cyber Security Debrief 04.02.19

Each week at EQ Data we will be looking at the breaking news stories from the world of data and cyber security. From the latest cyber technology developments to data breaches and new marketing insights; you can find the debrief here.


Launch of Government-supported programmes to boost diversity in cyber security

This week the Government announced a £500,000 investment in a variety of projects aimed at increasing the volume of skilled and diverse individuals working in UK cyber security. Building on the Cyber Skills Immediate Impact Fund, four new initiatives will benefit from the funding including, ‘Crucial Academy: Diversity in Cyber Security’ which will reskill veterans with a focus on women, neurodiverse and BAME individuals; ‘QA: Cyber Software Academy for Women’ which is enabling women embarking on cyber development careers; ‘BluescreenIT: Hacked’, an initiative to train and place individuals with disabilities and from disadvantaged backgrounds; Hacker House: Hands on Hacking, Training and Employer portal, an online-based training programme which facilitates communication between cyber security job seekers and employers.


Cyber crime is costing victims almost £200,000 each day in the UK

New statistics from Action Fraud have revealed the incredible financial cost to victims of cyber-crime, amounting to almost £35 million last year or over £190,000 each day. Between April and September 2018, Action Fraud run by the City of London Police received 13,357 reports of cyber-crime which saw £34.6 million stolen from online users, marking a 24% increase from the previous six months. Amongst the reports, hacked email and social media accounts were a significant proportion and had cost victims near to £15 million. Karen Baxter, the Commander of the City of London Police, reiterated the importance of separate, high-strength passwords for email accounts and paying heed to security updates on devices and apps.


Google lends anti-hacking tools to limit cyber interference in EU elections

Jigsaw, Google’s cyber-security division, revealed this week that it would be expanding its Project Shield offering to support politicians and campaigns ahead of the EU elections in May. Shield is a free service which defends sites from Distributed Denial of Service (DDoS) attacks, one of the most prolific methods of crashing sites by overwhelming them with harmful traffic. In Google’s blog post on their commitment to preventing EU election abuse, it highlighted examples of recent cyber interference in election processes from tampering with Google Maps to hinder voters finding polling stations to crashing important election information websites. Project Shield will be deployed to political campaigns and journalists in the EU alongside dedicated teams of human cyber security experts and a new tool to ensure the legitimacy of EU parliamentary election ads for greater transparency.


UK Business Secretary announces plans for more robust hardware to ‘design out’ cyber security threats

With the scale and complexity of cyber-attacks increasing at a constant rate, the Business Secretary Greg Clark has announced renewed investment in the research, design and development of more robust hardware used by businesses and consumers to stop cyber threats gaining a foothold in the first instance. According to Clark, 40% of UK businesses have experienced a cyber security breach or attack in the last 12 months and the rise of smart devices in homes means individuals are at greater risk from hackers. More intelligently designed hardware with in-built solutions aims to ‘design out’ potential vulnerabilities in the devices and online services we rely on each day. The government is investing £70 million through the Industrial Strategy Challenge Fund for this project and a dedicated £30 million for smart products.

Jamie Acutt

Jamie Acutt

Head of Marketing, Equiniti Cyber Security

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