Feeds

UK.gov launches virus advice site

Is ITsafe

  • alert
  • submit to reddit

The Power of One eBook: Top reasons to choose HP BladeSystem

The UK government launched an official virus alert site yesterday. ITsafe is designed to help home users and small businesses use the net more safely through a combination of free advice and threat alerts about risks such as fast-spreading computer viruses. Users can sign up to receive alerts by either text or email.

The service is funded by the Home Office and uses information provided by the National Infrastructure Security Co-ordination Centre (NISCC) - the Government’s centre for electronic defence. An estimated 13m UK homes have net access. As professional cyber criminals have turned their attention towards exploiting security weaknesses in the consumer market to distribute spam or in phishing attacks the need for an IT security advice site has grown.

Home Office minister Hazel Blears said: "There is a clear need for easy-to-understand and simple independent advice for non-technically minded people who use computers either at home or at work. The purpose of this new Government service is to ensure computer users are aware of the risks involved and how to deal with them easily and effectively without causing alarm."

Worthy aims but early reaction to the site from Reg readers suggests considerable scope for improvement. "Apart from the fact it looks like it took all of five minutes to design and contains approximately nothing of use, the email sign-up service doesn't even send a confirmation email that you really did ask to subscribe," said Reg reader Simon Li. "A search for 'security' http://www.itsafe.gov.uk/cgi-bin/search.cgi?query=security manages to turn up threats such as 'clip art' and 'blog'."

Doubtless these problems will be ironed out over time. The UK initiative is similar in aims to the US National Cyber Security Alliance's StaySafeOnline. ®

Related stories

Small.biz gets the virus jitters
Small.biz gets more spam
Big guns back UK IT security drive
UK preps major security awareness campaign
Small.biz crap at security (redux)

The Power of One eBook: Top reasons to choose HP BladeSystem

More from The Register

next story
HIDDEN packet sniffer spy tech in MILLIONS of iPhones, iPads – expert
Don't panic though – Apple's backdoor is not wide open to all, guru tells us
Mozilla fixes CRITICAL security holes in Firefox, urges v31 upgrade
Misc memory hazards 'could be exploited' - and guess what, one's a Javascript vuln
BMW's ConnectedDrive falls over, bosses blame upgrade snafu
Traffic flows up 20% as motorway middle lanes miraculously unclog
LibreSSL RNG bug fix: What's all the forking fuss about, ask devs
Blow to bit-spitter 'tis but a flesh wound, claim team
Manic malware Mayhem spreads through Linux, FreeBSD web servers
And how Google could cripple infection rate in a second
Yorkshire cops fail to grasp principle behind BT Fon Wi-Fi network
'Prevent people that are passing by to hook up to your network', pleads plod
Don't look, Snowden: Security biz chases Tails with zero-day flaws alert
Exodus vows not to sell secrets of whistleblower's favorite OS
Researcher sat on critical IE bugs for THREE YEARS
VUPEN waited for Pwn2Own cash while IE's sandbox leaked
prev story

Whitepapers

Top three mobile application threats
Prevent sensitive data leakage over insecure channels or stolen mobile devices.
Implementing global e-invoicing with guaranteed legal certainty
Explaining the role local tax compliance plays in successful supply chain management and e-business and how leading global brands are addressing this.
Top 8 considerations to enable and simplify mobility
In this whitepaper learn how to successfully add mobile capabilities simply and cost effectively.
Application security programs and practises
Follow a few strategies and your organization can gain the full benefits of open source and the cloud without compromising the security of your applications.
The Essential Guide to IT Transformation
ServiceNow discusses three IT transformations that can help CIO's automate IT services to transform IT and the enterprise.