Cyber Highway launches in the UK to check suppliers progress on Cyber Essentials certification

Lord David Blunkett has officially launched the Cyber Highway initiative

A new high-profile project has been launched in the UK with the aim of strengthening the IT security of the country's enterprises.

On Tuesday in London, Lord David Blunkett launched the Cyber Highway which offers a “user-friendly online portal for large enterprises that want to strengthen the cyber defence of their supply chain.”

The resource will allow corporations the ability to monitor their suppliers in real-time to see the progress they are making towards becoming Cyber Essentials certified.  In June 2014, the UK government launched the Cyber Essentials program to help organisations protect themselves against hackers and malware infections.

The Cyber Highway is a means of ensuring that a company's suppliers are following the Cyber Essentials requirements of acceptable security.  The certification itself is also becoming a requirement for many suppliers as more and more Whitehall departments are requiring suppliers to be Cyber Essentials certified.

Lord Blunkett offered his take on the progress of the UK Government's new stance on cyber security, saying: “The UK Government has made significant progress. Government departments now require suppliers bidding for particular contracts to be Cyber Essentials certified, and next month sees the launch of the National Cyber Security Centre. These are all steps in the right direction but we can and must go further, especially to assist many more companies to become certified.”

Javvad Malik, security advocate at the security tools firm AlienVault, extolled the progress Cyber Essentials has made so far, saying: “There definitely have been benefits from cyber essentials. Many small businesses that were not even aware of security needs or requirements have, by way of Cyber Security Essentials, been able to establish a baseline.  The better-equipped and aware of security needs companies are, the better the chance they can spot, prevent, and respond to a cyber attack.”   

“However, we may not see a visible reduction in the amount of data breaches immediately.  The process needs time to distil through organisations. During this time, it is likely that attackers will change their tactics – but overall the security bar will be raised.” 

Image Credit: Everything Possible / Shutterstock

ABOUT THE AUTHOR

Anthony currently resides in South Korea where he teaches and experiences Korean technological advances first hand.