The government clearly understands the dangers of poor cyber security readiness, as it has revealed its plans to invest £1 million into providing the latest training to create the next generation of experts.
Defence Secretary Gavin Williamson yesterday (September 30th) revealed the Cadets CyberFirst programme, which will teach 2,000 cadets the skills and information required to be among the best in the field.
The new project, delivered by Ministry of Defence cadet organisations and the GCHQ National Cyber Security Centre, will help youngsters learn how to prevent online attacks, protect networks, and solve major cyber threats.
Mr Williamson stated: “Cyber threats to the UK are constantly evolving and this exciting initiative to train and develop ‘cyber cadets’ – the first of its kind in a NATO state – reaffirms our leading role in tackling security threats head on.”
In addition to this programme, the Defence Secretary wants to increase the number of cadets in schools from 43,000 to 60,000 over the next six years. This will give even more young people the opportunity to learn new skills and protect themselves in the online world.
Cyber threat is a growing force, particularly, as Mr Williamson recognised, people these days are constantly on their phones or computers.
Indeed, the National Cyber Security Centre received more than 1,100 cyber incident reports in its first year alone.
Major institutions and organisations could be jeopardised if online protection is not tight enough, including the NHS. Head of practice and development at the Chartered Society of Physiotherapy Steve Tolan recently raised his concerns about the health service’s ability to protect itself against cyber security.
He said implementing a sound cyber security programme “needs to be high on everyone’s agenda so we can support the protection of patient data and ensure continuity of care”.