UK government warns businesses about cyber crime threat

Theale, UK – Friday 7 September 2012 – The BBC has reported that the British government is to advise business leaders on how to better protect themselves from cyber threats.

Clearswift, a British-owned business and a global leader in cybersecurity solutions, fully supports this initiative, the details of which are summarlsed below:

The government is issuing advice to British business leaders on how to protect themselves from cyber threats.

At a conference at the Foreign Office, ministers and officials from the communications intelligence agency, GCHQ, will tell companies to create a more security-conscious culture.

It is estimated that UK businesses lose £21bn a year to cyber crime.

However, a survey in May by BAE Systems Detica suggested nearly nine out of 10 UK businesses were very or fairly confident about their defences.

Iain Lobban, the head of GCHQ will tell business leaders that such confidence is misplaced with potentially major implications for the economy and customers trust in online services.

He will ask board members and chief executives how confident they are that their company's most important information is safe from cyber threats and whether they are aware of the impact on a company's reputation, share price or even existence if sensitive information is stolen.

'Ground-breaking'

Separately, intelligence agencies on Wednesday called for closer co-operation with companies operating in sectors that could help them identify cyber criminals and terrorists.

MI5 and GCHQ said they were particularly keen to hear from small and medium-sized firms that could provide them with the technology to deal with threats to the national interest.

Companies can make proposals via a website, and those with potential could get development funding.

It is thought to be the first time that the intelligence services have made such a plea for help.

Clearswift recommends that it’s not enough to simply block inbound threats; protecting your data from the inside is crucial. Businesses need to find a way to manage the two-way flow of digital communication inside and out of the organisation. Reinforcing intelligent web and email gateways with clear policies, education and openness, is the best way to go about this.

Alyn Hockey, Clearswift’s Director of Product Management, adds:

‘Intelligence agencies such as GCHQ that are sharing information and advice on cyber security can only be a good thing for the business community. Some organisations that believe they are well protected may not be aware that they are still vulnerable to particular attacks. Advice like this can help them to better protect themselves, and prevent their businesses from being compromised.’

About Clearswift

Clearswift’s content-aware, policy based solutions (Clearswift Secure Web Gateway, Clearswift Secure Email Gateway, MIMEsweeper for SMTP) enable over 17,000 organisations in 50 countries to manage and maintain no-compromise data, email and web security across all gateways and in all directions.

Clearswift developed many features the security industry now considers standard, such as image scanning, policy-based encryption and user-level message tracking. Clearswift’s content-aware solutions enable safe and effective communication without compromising on security.

Headquartered in Reading, UK, Clearswift operates out of offices based in regional hubs in Sydney, Australia; Munich, Germany; Tokyo, Japan; Madrid, Spain; and New Jersey, United States.