Feeds

UK net 'more resilient' than other EU states

Lords encourage Europe to catch up

Secure remote control for conventional and virtual desktops

The UK's internet infrastructure is better prepared to withstand attack or natural disasters than many European nations', a Lords committee has found.

The interconnections between national internet infrastructures however mean the UK could benefit from improvements overseas, the Lords EU Home Affairs sub-Committee found.

Their conclusions follow comments by the security minister Lord West last week, who at a Critical National Infrastructure conference said the UK government was ahead of EU nations in guarding against cyber attacks.

"We do not think the Government are being complacent," the Committee said today.

"Our witnesses generally thought the United Kingdom had sophisticated defences compared to most other states."

Advised by Cambridge University security expert Dr Richard Clayton, the Lords heard from international witnesses from organisations including Europol, JANET, the Cabinet Office and SOCA.

They considered a range of scenarios threatening to the internet, such as the type of deliberate DDOS attack that cause wide disruption in Estonia in 2007, and a theoretical failure of the Thames barrier, which could damage vital datacentres and peering points concentrated in London's Docklands.

The Committee concluded that although the internet is widely considered a matter of national security, and so principally a concern for national governments, the EU has a role to play in building resilience.

"All Member States have an interest in bringing the defences of the lowest up to those of the highest, and that this is a matter of legitimate concern to the EU as a whole," they said.

ENISA, the European Network and Information Security Agency, serves as the main EU forum for cooperation on internet resilience, but the Lords criticised its location, on Crete, as unhelpful.

Meanwhile, they said the European Commission's plans for an EU-wide cybersecurity exercise this year were "unrealistic" and "over-ambitious" given the state of preparedness in other nations.

"Instead, as a first step, they should encourage the majority of Member States to have carried out national resilience exercises by the end of the year," they said.

The UK ran a telecoms resilience exercise, code-named "White Noise", in November. The conclusions are yet to be published.

The Lords' full report is here. ®

The essential guide to IT transformation

More from The Register

next story
Hello, police, El Reg here. Are we a bunch of terrorists now?
Do Brits risk arrest for watching beheading video nasty? We asked the fuzz
Detroit losing MILLIONS because it buys CHEAP BATTERIES – report
Man at hardware store was right: name brands DO last longer
Snowden on NSA's MonsterMind TERROR: It may trigger cyberwar
Plus: Syria's internet going down? That was a US cock-up
UK government accused of hiding TRUTH about Universal Credit fiasco
'Reset rating keeps secrets on one-dole-to-rule-them-all plan', say MPs
Caught red-handed: UK cops, PCSOs, specials behaving badly… on social media
No Mr Fuzz, don't ask a crime victim to be your pal on Facebook
e-Borders fiasco: Brits stung for £224m after US IT giant sues UK govt
Defeat to Raytheon branded 'catastrophic result'
Yes, but what are your plans if a DRAGON attacks?
Local UK gov outs most ridiculous FoI requests...
EU justice chief blasts Google on 'right to be forgotten'
Don't pretend it's a freedom of speech issue – interim commish
Munich considers dumping Linux for ... GULP ... Windows!
Give a penguinista a hug, the Outlook's not good for open source's poster child
This'll end well: US govt says car-to-car jibber-jabber will SAVE lives
Department of Transportation starts cogs turning for another wireless comms standard
prev story

Whitepapers

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 10 endpoint backup mistakes
Avoid the ten endpoint backup mistakes to ensure that your critical corporate data is protected and end user productivity is improved.
Top 8 considerations to enable and simplify mobility
In this whitepaper learn how to successfully add mobile capabilities simply and cost effectively.
Rethinking backup and recovery in the modern data center
Combining intelligence, operational analytics, and automation to enable efficient, data-driven IT organizations using the HP ABR approach.
Reg Reader Research: SaaS based Email and Office Productivity Tools
Read this Reg reader report which provides advice and guidance for SMBs towards the use of SaaS based email and Office productivity tools.