UK cyber emergency response team unveiled

UK-CERT will coordinate the management of national cyber security incidents.
Written by Steve Ranger, Global News Director

The UK's own Computer Emergency Response Team (CERT) has finally been unveiled.

CERT-UK will take the lead in coordinating the management of national cyber security incidents. It will provide support to critical national infrastructure companies such as utilities, and aims to promote security awareness across the private and public sector.

It will also be a point of contact for other CERTs internationally and manage incidents that cross national borders.

The unit was formally unveiled by Cabinet Office minister Francis Maude, who said as much as 93 percent of large corporations had a computer security breach over the past financial year, costing somewhere between £450,000 and £850,000 — although he said one London-based company "lost £800m of revenue because of an attack".

"CERT-UK is going to play an incredibly important role in ensuring that we have that firm, resilient, foundation underpinning our economy. It's crucial," he said.

The idea of creating the UK's own CERT emerged two and a half years ago as part of the National Cyber Security Strategy, with the aim of getting it established within a year. Many other countries already have such an organisation in place.

CERT will also be home to the Cyber Information Sharing Partnership (CISP), which allows government and business to exchange information on threats and vulnerabilities as they occur. CISP now has over 1,000 members, and 350 businesses and organisations have registered.

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