Significant cyberthreat to UK businesses continues to grow

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Greater collaboration is needed in order to combat the significant cyberthreat to British businesses, according to the UK’s National Crime Agency and the National Cyber Security Centre.

A jointly released report found that industry and government, as well as law enforcement, need to work more closely together to deal with increasing aggressive and confrontational attacks.

The report found that Distributed Denial of Service (DDoS) attacks were experiencing a noticeable rise, along with extortion and ransomware.

The latter works by encrypting a victim’s computer, before then demanding a ransom in return for control being handed back.

The paper claims there have been as many as 188 high-level attacks that warranted NSC involvement, along with “countless lower level ones”.

This is not the first time that businesses have been warned about the increased ferocity of cybercrime, with a  2016 report from BT and KPMG urging organizations to get a better understanding of the problem.

This latest warning from the NCA and NCSC says the threat posed by cybercriminals to UK organizations is only going to increase, adding that the rise of trends such as the Internet of Things (IoT) has provided actors with “more vectors than ever before”.

Connected devices, many of which are not always made secure by manufacturers or users, have undoubtedly changed the landscape, but both the NCA and NCSC are confident that the situation will improve, with insecure devices likely to be the subject of greater recalls.

Nevertheless, the report insists the UK government still has a part to play in promoting smart device security to develop standards and ensure the appropriate measures are being implemented.

Donald Toon, director for economic and cybercrime at the NCA, adds that businesses and other private organizations cannot hide away from their own responsibilities.

“Businesses reporting cybercrime is essential if we are to fully understand the threat, and take the most effective action against it,” he said.


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