Government launches cybersecurity service

A new advice and alerts Web site aimed at individuals and SMEs has been launched by the Home Office

A virus alert and IT security advice website for home PC users and small businesses has been launched by the government.

The free site, called ITsafe, will provide information on the latest virus threats as well as advice on safe internet surfing, email use and protecting personal and business data.

The site is funded by the Home Office and will use data from the National Infrastructure Security Co-ordination Centre (NISCC), which is responsible for monitoring threats to the UK's critical national infrastructure.

Users will receive email or text alerts about new virus and security threats once they have signed up to the service.

The Home Office said the alerts will outline the damage potential of any new threats along with instructions of any actions the user needs to take to update the security of their PC.

Home Office minister Hazel Blears said the site will provide jargon-free and easy-to-understand advice for non-technically minded PC users.

Roger Cumming, director of NISCC, said in a statement: "ITsafe will take our technical expertise and use it to help home users understand the risks and keep their computer systems, mobile phones and a range of related consumer electronic items, safe."

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