UK overseas secretary Dominic Raab has promised to take a tougher stance towards cyber criminals and different menace actors, as companies, vital infrastructure operators and different public our bodies face a surge in harmful cyber assaults and ransomware incidents.
In an unique interview with The Telegraph on the fringes of the G7 Summit, Raab mentioned the UK would work extra intently with the US on world safety management.
He instructed the newspaper that the UK would “apply a cost to those that systematically are engaged in cyber attacks for either profit, espionage or to do damage and just wreak chaos”.
The overseas secretary hinted at new sanctions towards a better variety of malicious actors and their enablers – which may embody asset freezes and particular person journey bans – in addition to firmer direct attribution, and presumably even offensive cyber retaliation.
Charlie Smith, consulting options engineer at Barracuda Networks, mentioned collaboration with the US may mark one thing of a turning level within the combat towards cyber crime for the UK.
“The sharp rise in ransomware attacks against schools, hospitals, local councils and other critical national infrastructure cannot be underestimated and a concerted effort needs to be made to protect and secure these vital organisations from increasingly brazen attacks,” mentioned Smith.
“Key to this must be having the right backup systems in place to protect and restore critical data, as well as a proactive approach to identifying the source of the hack and issuing the necessary sanctions and criminal penalties.”
Raab has beforehand signalled the UK authorities’s ambitions to turn into a cyber safety chief – not simply in expertise, however in diplomacy – saying that the UK must play a much bigger position in serving to set up worldwide norms and “rules of the road” in cyber area, and warning that the western allies can’t afford to let nation states which might be unafraid to interrupt these norms – which largely means China, Iran, North Korea and Russia – fill the vacuum.
To this finish, final month he dedicated £22m to fund National Cyber Security Centre (NCSC) tasks in growing and weak international locations within the Global South.
“We have got to win hearts and minds across the world for our positive vision of cyber space as a free space, open to all responsible users and there for the benefit of the whole world,” mentioned Raab in a speech to the NCSC’s CyberUK convention.
Meanwhile, Joe Biden, who arrived within the UK for the G7 Summit on 10 June on his first journey exterior the US as president, has additionally taken a agency stance on cyber safety after taking on from Donald Trump on the top of the fallout from the state-backed SolarWinds Orion incident, adopted by the Microsoft Exchange Server assaults, and extra not too long ago the Colonial Pipeline ransomware incident.
Last month, Biden signed a brand new govt order meant to harden US cyber safety and authorities networks – mandating elevated cooperation between sufferer organisations, legislation enforcement and the federal authorities as a jumping-off level.
Earlier this week, the White House made quite a lot of suggestions following a 100-day evaluation of provide chain resilience – together with parts of provide chain cyber safety in addition to different points, resembling the present semiconductor provide disaster, and points within the provide of Covid-19 vaccines.