Feeds

MI5 chief: Cyber spying 'relatively straightforward' to beat

Common sense call

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

Jonathan Evans, the head of MI5, has claimed the internet has made the threat of espionage by foreign countries higher than ever before, but insisted it is "relatively straightforward" to block attempts to steal data.

"The overall likelihood of any particular entity being the subject of state espionage has probably never been higher, though paradoxically many of the vulnerabilities exploited both in cyber espionage and traditional espionage are relatively straightforward to plug if you are aware of them," he said.

The common sense call is relevant to ongoing work by the year-old Office of Cyber Security in the Cabinet Office to improve basic information security across government and in businesses.

MI5, officially known as the Security Service, is responsible for counter-espionage. Evans has previously written to the bosses of big British companies to warn them of the threat online, particularly from hackers with links to the Chinese intelligence services.

Cyber security is a key issue for the ongoing Strategic Defence and Security Review, which is due to report next month. Following the first national Cyber Security Strategy last year, efforts to protect UK networks and data are expected to receive a large budget boost, against a background of cuts to other areas of defence and security.

"Cyber security is a priority for the government both in respect of national security and economic harm. Ensuring that well informed advice is available to those who need it, including through the use of private sector partners is, and will remain, vital," Evans said.

He made his comments in a rare public speech last night in the City of London, which focused on threats from dissident Irish Republicans and Islamic extremists in Yemen and Somalia. The intelligence budget is under pressure as part of the Comprehensive Spending Review. ®

Designing a Defense for Mobile Applications

More from The Register

next story
Secure microkernel that uses maths to be 'bug free' goes open source
Hacker-repelling, drone-protecting code will soon be yours to tweak as you see fit
How long is too long to wait for a security fix?
Synology finally patches OpenSSL bugs in Trevor's NAS
Roll out the welcome mat to hackers and crackers
Security chap pens guide to bug bounty programs that won't fail like Yahoo!'s
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
Researcher sat on critical IE bugs for THREE YEARS
VUPEN waited for Pwn2Own cash while IE's sandbox leaked
Four fake Google haxbots hit YOUR WEBSITE every day
Goog the perfect ruse to slip into SEO orfice
Putin: Crack Tor for me and I'll make you a MILLIONAIRE
Russian Interior Ministry offers big pile o' roubles for busting pro-privacy browser
prev story

Whitepapers

Designing a Defense for Mobile Applications
Learn about the various considerations for defending mobile applications - from the application architecture itself to the myriad testing technologies.
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.
Seven Steps to Software Security
Seven practical steps you can begin to take today to secure your applications and prevent the damages a successful cyber-attack can cause.
Boost IT visibility and business value
How building a great service catalog relieves pressure points and demonstrates the value of IT service management.