Stay up to date with notifications from The Independent

Notifications can be managed in browser preferences.

Multimillion pound 'cyber force to be launched in Britain'

'We are both committed to continuing to invest in this area, given the real threats the UK faces from a range of hostile actors,' government spokesman says

Thursday 20 September 2018 23:57 BST
Comments
Experts will be recruited from the military, security services and industry.
Experts will be recruited from the military, security services and industry. (Reuters)

A £250m cyber-force unit that will combat terrorist groups and domestic gangs is reportedly to be set up.

Experts will be recruited from the military, security services and industry for the project which will be set up by the Ministry of Defence (MoD) and GCHQ, according to The Times which originally reported the story.

A Government spokesman said: "The MoD and GCHQ have a long and proud history of working together, including on the National Offensive Cyber Programme. We are both committed to continuing to invest in this area, given the real threats the UK faces from a range of hostile actors."

In July, a parliamentary committee warned that ministers are failing to get to grip with the shortage in cyber security experts despite the "potentially severe implications" for national security.

MPs and peers said the situation is of "serious concern", but the Government response lacks "urgency".

In a report, they warned the WannaCry attack in May 2017, which hit the NHS, showed the need to protect critical national infrastructure (CNI) from cyber threats.

But the Joint Committee on the National Security Strategy said: "We are struck by the Government's apparent lack of urgency in addressing the cyber security skills gap, which is of vital importance to both national security and the economy."

The committee said the Government and private sector was affected by the shortage in skilled cyber security workers.

Developing cyber security skills strategy should be the Government's first priority, the committee said.

"It is a pressing matter of national security that it does so," it added.

In July, a Government spokeswoman said: "We have a £1.9 billion National Cyber Security Strategy, opened the world-leading National Cyber Security Centre and continue to build on our cyber security knowledge, skills and capability."

Press Association

Join our commenting forum

Join thought-provoking conversations, follow other Independent readers and see their replies

Comments

Thank you for registering

Please refresh the page or navigate to another page on the site to be automatically logged inPlease refresh your browser to be logged in