Mainstream media only offer a “snapshot” of scope of cybercrime, says British intelligence head

Mainstream media reports offer a mere “snapshot” of the scope of cybercrime, according to the head of British intelligence agency GCHQ (Government Communications Headquarters).

“Cyberspace is contested every day, every hour, every minute, every second,” said Sir Iain Lobban, Director of GCHQ.

Sir Iain contributed an article entitled “Countering the cyber threat to business”  to the Spring 2013 edition of the Institute of Directors Big Picture policy journal. Sir Iain said that although cyber attacks are now reported frequently in the media, the reports still fail to capture the scope of cybercrime.

“GCHQ’s cutting-edge technology adds a unique perspective on the issue, illuminating the threats in cyberspace. And I have to say that the incidents I see described in the media are just a snapshot of what is going on,” he wrote. “On average, 33,000 malicious emails a month are blocked at the gateway to the Government Secure Intranet – they contain sophisticated malware, often sent by highly capable cyber criminals or by state-sponsored groups. And a far greater number of e-mails, comprising less sophisticated malicious e-mails and spam, is blocked each month.”

Sir Iain set out a guideline entitled 10 Steps to Cyber Security in the article, saying “The responsibility to manage your organisation’s cyber risks starts and stops at board level. Basic information risk management can stop up to 80% of the cyber attacks seen today.”

Author Rob Waugh, We Live Security

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17 May 2013
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