The UK is investing £1.9bn to develop a cyber security defence system that will automatically protect British businesses and citizens online.
Dubbed the National Cyber Security Strategy, the programme is set to be announced by UK Finance Minister Philip Hammond today (pictured).
Hammond will outline how the new funding will help protect Britain in a world where a growing number of connected devices makes both key national infrastructure in energy and transport, and private citizens, more vulnerable.
The £1.9bn investment over the next five years represents a doubling of the funding provided for cyber defence over the 2011–2016 period.
Cyber security expert Joe Hancock with legal firm Mishcon de Reya said: “Cyber-crime is continuously evolving and therefore the issue needs continuous investment – today’s sophisticated attack is tomorrow’s bulk annoyance. Given the threat that cyber-crime poses, it would be ideal to see the government commit to a figure that will be allocated to tackling cyber-crime each year.
“Given that many malicious issues originate abroad, a similar fund from the Foreign & Commonwealth Office to encourage other countries to improve their security at source – rather than when they get to the UK – would be welcome.
“This investment is a very positive step, however greater investment in skills is needed in the police force and also in Action Fraud to enable them to take action, or at least direct a civil response. There’s a danger these national defences don’t show a genuine return for individuals and businesses who have been the victims of cyber-crime. Success will be measured by the fraud and crime that remains, rather than what has been prevented.”
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