GCHQ will provide advise to Britain’s senior business leaders on how best to counter the threat of cyber attacks within a program that is the first pairing of Government intelligence services working in such a way directly with the private sector.
The Cyber Security for Business forum follows the growing concern over the threat of cyber attacks and its toll on the British economy, estimated to currently cost £27 billion a year, and will be attended by CEOs and FTSE 100 company leaders.
The Commons Intelligence and Security Committee previously concluded that the UK defence’s were inadequate and at risk to cyber attack despite the £650 million national cyber security program.
Jonathan Evans, the head of MI5, disclosed a high level of state and criminal cyber attacks on UK business including one specific attack that has cost one London business an estimated £800 million.
The blueprint produced by GCHQ focuses on the “Top 20 Critical Controls for Effective Cyber Defence” that claims to substantially reduce the risk of cyber attacks by preventing or deterring the majority of attacks.
The GCHQ forum will also be provided with an outline of the increased threat and examples of companies that have been a victim to those types of cyber attacks.
The Cost of Cyber Crime report published in 2011 suggests that the business sector is the worst affected to cyber attacks, losing around £21 billion a year in revenue, the cost to consumers was £3.1 billion (due to identity theft and online scams), whilst the Government lost a report £2.2 billion through fraud.
The growth of technology and Internet accounts for 21% of gross domestic growth in the last 5 years in mature economies and 6% of total GDP is generated by the Internet.
The GCHQ director, Iain Lobban, stated that using this approach would make it more difficult for cyber attacks to take place without significant cost.
As the ability to participate in cyber attacks is increased through greater opportunity, businesses surveyed suggested that 90% were confident in the policies, procedures and defences, indicating misplaced confidence amongst UK business.
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