This week, the Director General of the Security Service (MI5), Jonathan Evans, spoke about the variety of threats facing the UK. One threat that he signalled out was cyber, or the threat of malicious activity in cyber space. Mr Evans stated that the front line in cyber space is as much the business community as it is Government. He also called the extent of cyber attacks astonishing, ‘with industrial scale processes involving many thousands of people lying behind both state sponsored cyber espionage and organised cyber crime’. It is clear that cyber attacks are not only aimed at threatening our infrastructure and critical services but also accessing and exploiting our intellectual property.
Defence and Security
A green cross code for the Internet?…
The day before Intellect’s Children and the Internet: Playing it safe conference – #Kidzonline. Habbo hotel, reportedly the world’s largest online community was frozen due to sexually explicit chat aimed at minors, meaning the child online safety debate resurfaced like a seal pup chased by a great white shark. That’s good publicity for Intellect’s #Kidzonline event I hear you say!? Actually no – see my previous blog - as Will Gardner of ChildNet said at the event “one child is one too many”, which I feel is the correct viewpoint. We live in the real world and unfortunately not all is right with it but this topic doesn’t deserve any publicity let alone good publicity.
Intellect and Imagination Technologies are partnering to assess the innovation climate in the UK, especially in the fast-moving electronics sector. This initiative is part of a wider industry-led exercise called ‘ESCO – electronics systems challenges and opportunities’ which will report back to government later in the year on the state of UK electronics. A series of interviews with industry leaders and a CEO breakfast meeting held last week with Tim Luke, Number 10’s senior adviser, are forming the biggest bulk of evidence, which will be completed with an overview on how the UK is comparing with the rest of the world, especially the US and Asia. (more…)
This month, some of the detail on PR12 (Planning Round 2012) was announced by the MOD. It has taken some time to get here. Every year, the MOD says that the current planning round has been the most difficult ever – this is certainly true for PR12. Issues such as which variant of the F35 to select have disrupted the process as has defence transformation. Whilst the numbers quoted in PR12 are tough for both the MOD and its suppliers, the positive news is it has ushered in ‘certainty’ in the EP and the MOD has been able to think strategically about equipment for the first time in recent memory – engendering a degree of confidence on the part of the MOD and hopefully its supply base.
The MOD will spend almost £160 billion on new equipment and data systems, and their support, over the next 10 years. This spending hinges on the planning assumption (agreed with the Treasury in July 2011) of a 1% per annum real increase in the equipment and support budget from 2015. New equipment, data systems, and their support will amount to approximately £152 billion over the next ten years. This £152 billion will include a contingency of £4 billion. Furthermore, £8 billion will be made available as unallocated headroom, which will fund the additional capabilities the MOD requires to deliver Future Force 2020. Finally, no project will be allowed to go into the EP (Equipment Programme) without a ten year budget line to cover both its acquisition and support costs.
On Thursday 26 March, the Republican-dominated House of Representatives approved the Cyber Intelligence and Sharing Act (CISPA). CISPA follows, but is distinct from the Stop Online Piracy Act (SOPA) which was met by widespread protest, perhaps most notably from Wikipedia, and ultimately stalled. One of the authors of the bill, Republican representative Mike Rogers, has said that the goal of the bill is to protect the US’s intellectual property (IP). CISPA broadly aims to allow the Government and the private sector to identify and share threat information for the purpose of national security. (more…)
During the prime minister’s recent visit to the US, David Cameron and Barack Obama both reiterated a desire to form closer ties to tackle the cyber threat. To achieve this, the British and American authorities will share information about cyber attacks and increase efforts to anticipate and prepare for future internet-based threats. According to a White House release, both countries ’cannot be secure in cyberspace without sharing with one another the knowledge of the threats we face, and our policies for confronting them.’ (more…)
Please see the link below for the latest Fact Pack for DCNS:
Last month, the UK Prime Minister and French President got together to talk about the treaties they signed in 2010, which focused on defence and nuclear co-operation.
The UK and France are similar sized nations, possessing similar sized armed forces and similar foreign policy ambitions. It was on these grounds that both Heads of State justified the 2010 treaties. These were not the only reasons, however, that these treaties were signed: thanks to the financial situation these countries find themselves in bilateral equipment co-operation has become a necessity. Bilateral equipment co-operation helps spread the cost of a particular programme / project between two nations, reducing the cost for each ministry of defence, and allowing for greater interoperability between the nations, as the collaborating countries’ possess the same or a very similar system.
An advert was placed today (29 February) in the OJEU and the MOD Contracts Bulletin seeking expressions of interest for a Strategic Partner to support the delivery of the DCNS Programme. This is the MOD’s ICT Services Acquisition Change Programme that aims to deliver the next generation of contracts for ICT services for the MOD. (more…)