UK begins ‘national security in a digital world’ inquiry

The UK government has pledged that it will treat a national cyber attack as seriously as a conventional attack.

The second National Cyber Security Strategy was launched in November 2016 to address challenges in relation to cyber security with a total budget of £1.9 billion for 2016 to 2021.

Last year, the Royal Society published a report showing that public trust in digital services and the ability of the digital economy to continue to thrive could be at risk in the UK without a step change in cybersecurity, supported by action from government, business and researchers.

Cybersecurity is an increasing concern

The Chair of the Joint Committee on the National Security Strategy, Margaret Beckett MP, commented: “The internet has changed our daily lives almost beyond recognition from the way we communicate, to the way we trade and the way Government provides services to citizens.

“However, while the digital revolution has opened up a whole host of opportunities, it has also created new vulnerabilities. The national security implications of the leap to cyber are a matter of increasing concern.”

National cybersecurity inquiry

The committee is seeking numerous submissions to its inquiry, covering the types and sources of cyber threats faced by the UK; learning points; analysis on technical and human resources; and the appropriate role for government in regulating and legislating in relation to national and international cybersecurity.

The inquiry will also assess ways in which the UK government can work with the private sector to build cyber resilience and cyber skills, and the effectiveness and coherence of the strategic lead provided by the National Security Council, other departments, agencies, and the National Cyber Security Centre.

“Attention has recently focused on the potential exploitation of the cyber domain by other states and associated actors for political purposes, but this is just one source of threat that the government must address through its recently launched five-year strategy,” Beckett added.


Edited from press release by Cecilia Rehn.