Articles about Cabinet

whitehall road in London. <a href="http://www.shutterstock.com/gallery-637816p1.html?cr=00&pl=edit-00">Albert Pego</a> / <a href="http://www.shutterstock.com/editorial?cr=00&pl=edit-00">Shutterstock.com</a>

Central gov spent £6.3bn on IT. Nearly half handed to just 3 suppliers

Central government splashed £6.3bn with IT suppliers for the year 2014/15 – with 42 per cent going to just three suppliers, according to government data shared with The Register. Sixty-five per cent of the total figure was hoovered up by 10 suppliers, with HP coming top at £1.2bn, followed by Capgemini at £861m, and BT at £ …
Kat Hall, 29 Apr 2016
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Whitehall waste: Cash splashed on consultants and temps up 90% in half decade

Update Taxpayers cash that government spends on consultants and temporary staff has soared by up to 90 per cent over the last five years to £1.3bn, as Whitehall struggled to build technical skills in-house, an official report confirmed. The Committee of Public Accounts probe into temp costs found departments’ overall spending had …
Kat Hall, 22 Apr 2016
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Hey, Britain! Meet Mr Maxwell, our new National Tech Advisor

The government's chief technology officer, Liam Maxwell, is escaping the Digital Services wing to take up the newly created post of National Technology Advisor. Under the promotion, the former head of IT at private school Eton will provide consultancy on Blighty's digital economy. Maxwell, who is leaving the post earlier than …
Kat Hall, 18 Apr 2016
£10 notes. Pic: Howard Lake

Ah, so that's why Adapt wasn't put in the shop window in 2015

The reason why Lyceum-backed Adapt remains Lyceum-backed is contained in their latest set of annual profit and loss accounts - company growth stalled and so a sales process was halted. The London-based outfit was expected to come onto the market last last year and tasked M&A and corporate finance advisor ARMA Partners with …
Paul Kunert, 18 Apr 2016
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HMRC Verify is '2nd class'

HMRC's new Personal Tax portal won't work fully with new ID system Verify. You can do your personal tax management online, but the GOV.UK webpage warns "you won’t be able to use some services" if you use Verify. Instead you’ll need the Government Gateway to get all the services, HMRC warns. It’s a further blow to the Cabinet …
Andrew Orlowski, 18 Apr 2016

Why we should learn to stop worrying and love legacy – Fujitsu's UK head

Interview In the UK, IT Godzilla Fujitsu is perhaps best known for its unwieldy public sector contracts, being responsible for running a sizeable chunk of the government's legacy technology. Indeed most of its UK and Ireland revenue has historically come from the public sector, some 70 per cent at the beginning of the last Parliament in …
Kat Hall, 15 Apr 2016
Iain Duncan Smith. Pic: Foreign & Commonwealth Office

Universal Credit at high risk of cyber-attack, fraud from the outset

Documents released after a four-year legal battle reveal the extent of the UK government's blithe disregard for the risks faced by Universal Credit. This week, internal reviews of the enormous project in 2011 and 2012 were published by the Department of Work and Pensions under Freedom of Information laws. The dossiers reveal …
Kat Hall, 13 Apr 2016
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China drinks Uber, IoT and e-health Kool Aid

China's State Council has signed off on a plan to place the internet of things at the heart of new efforts to upgrade the nation's manufacturing capabilities. The “Made in China 2025” strategy aims to get China out of low-value manufacturing and into more impressive stuff. The State Council, China's equivalent of a …
Simon Sharwood, 07 Apr 2016
Sigmundur Gunnlaugsson

Iceland prime minister falls on sword over Panama Papers email leak

Iceland's Prime Minister Sigmundur Gunnlaugsson has resigned over documents in the so-called Panama Papers, which revealed details of his family's tax arrangements. Sigurdur Ingi Johannsson, the deputy chair of the Prime minister's Progressive Party, stated that Gunnlaugsson had resigned on Tuesday on Iceland's national public …
Iain Thomson, 05 Apr 2016
Doctor Who – The Zygon Invasion. Pic credit: BBC

The BBC flashes £560m ICT deal at hungry tech suppliers

The BBC has once again opened its wallet and is enticing suppliers to bid for a £560m ICT and hosting contract – part of its plans to replace its mega £2bn Atos contract. Over the next eight years it expects to splash between £400m and £560m on the deal, via a "single contracting entity" for end user compute services, hosting …
Kat Hall, 05 Apr 2016
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George Bush naked selfie hacker Guccifer gets his day in US court

Marcel Lehel Lazăr, 44, who as the hacker Guccifer published the email account contents of senior US political figures, has appeared for the first time in a US court. The indictment claims that between December 2012 and January 2014, Lazăr used publicly available information and guesswork to get into email accounts via …
Iain Thomson, 05 Apr 2016
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Carving up the IT contract behind £500bn of annual tax collection is a very risky move

Analysis The thankless nature of IT service provision is often demonstrated by the fact users only tend to notice it when it goes wrong: if there's no screaming, then it's working fine. In that respect, at least, HM Revenue and Customs' £10bn IT contract with Capgemini and Fujitsu has been a success. Particularly if one considers the …
Kat Hall, 04 Apr 2016
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Legal right to 10Mbps broadband is 'not enough', thunders KCOM chief

The government's plans to make 10Mbps a 'legal right' by 2020 do not nearly go far enough, Bill Halbert, chief exec of telecoms sector firm Kcom has said. Achieving an ultrafast broadband infrastructure is "one of the most important things we can achieve as a country," Halbert told The Register. "The Universal Service …
Kat Hall, 30 Mar 2016
Man rools out fibre cable from a large wooden cable reel on a suburban street. Pic via Pixabay

Your broadband speeds are up by 6Mbps, boasts UK watchdog Ofcom

The average home broadband speed in the UK increased to 28.9Mbps, up by 6Mbps from a year ago – according to the latest annual research from Ofcom. In November 2015, forty-two per cent of residential fixed broadband lines were superfast products – connections with a headline speed of "up to" 30Mbps or more, a nine percentage …
Kat Hall, 24 Mar 2016
Dispatchers are vital to co-ordinating on the ground activities

Ello ello ello: Bungling Met cops blew £100m on failing tech wheezes

Exclusive The Met Police has admitted to having spent more than £100m on 37 technology projects that have been either stopped or need to be "corrected" as part of its "project cull" strategy. Of 147 live technology projects at the Met, 20 projects worth £24m have been stopped and 17 more, worth £83m, have been identified as needing " …
Kat Hall, 24 Mar 2016
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UK.gov kicks long awaited digi strategy into long grass, blames EU referendum

The government's digital strategy will not be released until after the EU membership referendum, culture secretary Ed Vaizey has admitted. Speaking in front of a Parliamentaryselect committee yesterday, Vaizey said he wants to the UK to become a "gigabit Britain" over the next ten years. "The strategy has been drafted and is …
Kat Hall, 23 Mar 2016

New UK cyber security centre to work with Bank of England

The UK's new national cyber centre will collaborate with the Bank of England on new cyber security guidance for financial firms when it opens later this year, the government has said. The Cabinet Office announced that the National Cyber Security Centre (NCSC) will be based in London and start operating in October. It said one …
OUT-LAW.COM, 23 Mar 2016

Censor-happy China, battling Brazilians ... just what's left in the wake of ICANN's now ex-CEO?

Analysis Everyone wants to leave their job on a high, but so few manage it. One of those who tried so hard is Fadi Chehade, CEO of domain-name system overseer ICANN, who vacated the top role earlier this month. He has left a bit of a stink behind, thanks to his courting of the repressive Chinese government and disgraced Brazilian …
Kieren McCarthy, 22 Mar 2016
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Gov to take axe to big IT contracts soon, will hand chunks to SMEs

Chief executive of the civil service, John Manzoni, has promised the government will start chopping up its big IT contracts in the next year and kick its dependency on just a handful of suppliers. Amyas Morse, auditor general at the National Audit Office, told the Public Accounts Committee yesterday that 51 per cent of …
Kat Hall, 22 Mar 2016
Woman angrily hangs up phone. Photo via Shutterstock

Web ads are reading my keystrokes and I can’t even spel propperlie

Something for the Weekend, Sir? A friend has the willies. He even went on Facebook to tell us about his willies. He’s not normally the kind to get the willies, but willies is what he has. American readers of this column may be disappointed to learn that my friend is neither a fellow of loose morals nor is he, as far as I am aware, multitudinally …
Alistair Dabbs, 18 Mar 2016
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UK.gov's Major Projects Authority ain't saving us any money, say MPs

MPs have said they are disappointed in the lack of evidence that the Major Projects Authority has reduced UK.gov's poor track record in delivering big programmes, according to a report released today. The MPA oversees 149 projects, which have a combined lifetime cost of £511bn – many of which include a large element of IT such …
Kat Hall, 18 Mar 2016
Secretary of State for the Home Department Theresa May. Photo by Twocoms/Shutterstock.com

Lessons from history for UK Home Sec Theresa May's Investigatory Powers Bill

IPB “Let me be clear,” Theresa May said on the introduction of the Investigatory Powers Bill in Blighty, “the draft Bill we are publishing today is not a return to the draft Communications Data Bill of 2012.” She was referring to the previous, the UK's previous coalition government's attempt at a Snoopers' Charter. This was true …
Luke Bannister

Brit teen bags $250,000 in first World Drone Prix

Pics and video A 15-year-old schoolboy from the UK has won a first prize of US$250,000 (£175,000) after besting 31 other pilots at the first World Drone Prix in Dubai. Drone racing track in Dubai Racers, start your rotors Luke Bannister, pilot for the Tornado X-Blades Banni UK, beat home team Dubai Drone Tek into second place, by racing …
Iain Thomson, 15 Mar 2016
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UK.gov says it's letting 1,000 SMEs push digital wares at civil servants

The government has awarded 1,261 suppliers a place on its 'Digital Outcomes and Specialists' framework – intended to help mandarins better use SMEs in their efforts to become more digital. According to the Cabinet Office, 92 per cent of the suppliers on the framework are SMEs, with 52 per cent new to the Digital Marketplace – …
Kat Hall, 14 Mar 2016

Brit geeks craft bijou Pi Zero gaming controller

A group of Brit geeks has hit Kickstarter with the R-Kade Zero - a diminutive piece of gaming kit based on the Raspberry Pi Zero. Described as "one of the smallest and minimalist gaming controllers around", DTronixs' R-Kade Zero comes in two flavours - the JS/4 (joystick plus four control buttons), and the 2STIK (two joysticks …
Lester Haines, 11 Mar 2016
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Accenture leans back, receives £86m Met Police contract

The Metropolitan Police has inked a £86m deal with Accenture to manage its applications, the latest contract award in the force's plan to shave £200m from its IT budget over the next three years by carving up its existing Capgemini contract. The deal will last for five years, with the option of a three year extension. The …
Kat Hall, 08 Mar 2016

Californian tycoons stole my sharing economy, says Lily Cole

Big Money has poisoned the utopia of the sharing economy, says the millionaire supermodel and “social entrepreneur” Lily Cole. Once upon a time, unicorns grazed innocently over websites like Cole’s own Impossible.com, the “gift economy” website that was powered only by love (and a gift from taxpayers). Contributors were happy …
Andrew Orlowski, 08 Mar 2016
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Bill Clinton killed off internet taxes, says Australian politician

Former Australian federal treasurer from the 1990s Peter Costello reckons the world passed up on a huge revenue source when it decided not to tax the Internet. Exactly how such a tax would have worked isn't explained, but in an interview with the Sydney Morning Herald, given as a soft profile to celebrate him assuming the role …

UK.gov will scrutinise all its Atos contracts following IT cock-up

The government is to cast a critical eye over all its contracts with Atos – worth £696m per year – after MPs urged the Cabinet Office to review its relationship with the outsourcer following an IT failure last year. A report by the Public Accounts Committee in December singled out Atos as having failed to show "an appropriate …
Kat Hall, 07 Mar 2016
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GDS gets it in the neck from MPs over Rural Payments Agency farce

The Government Digital Service's reset of the Rural Payments Agency's IT system, which ended in disaster last year, was “inappropriate for farmers”, according to a Public Accounts Committee (PAC) report. Last March a failure to integrate the digital front-end with the back-end system of the Common Agricultural Policy IT system …
Kat Hall, 02 Mar 2016
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Gov opens consultation on how to best to use your data

The government wants to introduce legislation to make it easier for local authorities and government departments to share citizen data without breaching the Data Protection Act, it said in a consultation opened this week. Proposals in the Cabinet Office's Better Use of Data (PDF) consultation are intended to give the …
Kat Hall, 01 Mar 2016
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Toaster cooks network and burns 'expert' user's credibility to a crisp

ON-CALL Welcome to On-Call, our Friday frolic through readers' tales of being "used and abused to serve like hell", as Grandmaster Flash once said. This week, meet “CJ”, who back in the day “finally managed to convince the owners of real estate agency that their ageing 10B2 thin Ethernet network needed to be updated and made reliable …
Simon Sharwood, 26 Feb 2016
Dispatchers are vital to co-ordinating on the ground activities

Met Police hands £250m to CSC in IT outsourcing carve-up

The Met Police has handed £250m in contracts to CSC, part of its potentially risky plan to carve up large chunks of its IT in the hope that outsourcers can do a better job. The contracts are for a £155m end user computing deal to provide managed desktop services, storage over the next five years; and a £95m hosting deal to …
Kat Hall, 24 Feb 2016

UK.gov delays Digital Services and Outcomes framework

The government's replacement for the widely-criticised digital services framework, which SMEs have blamed for merely "body shopping" their services, has been delayed by two months. In a letter sent to suppliers yesterday and seen by The Register, the Cabinet Office admitted the timescale has slipped for the newly-named Digital …
Kat Hall, 23 Feb 2016

'Leave' or 'Stay' in the referendum? UK has to implement GDPR either way

Opinion “In” or “out”, the UK has to implement the General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR). This is important given that some organisations might think that a “Leave” vote might change matters with respect to the GDPR compliance (especially as the Cabinet minister responsible for GDPR implementation, John Whittingdale, is a prominent …
Pie chart inventor and scoundrel William Playfair could easily take his place at a cereal bar in Shoreditch

Meet the original Big Data, TED Talk, Thought Shower Futurist

Andrew at Large At the Battle of Ideas Festival at the Barbican last year, Claire Fox chaired a panel titled: “Is Technology Limiting Our Humanity?”, and invited me to take part. Panelists could give a seven-minute introduction. It’s now online as a video and podcast. Two avenues looked promising, and today I will give you an excerpt from …
Andrew Orlowski, 19 Feb 2016
Chi Onwurah MP

Ofcom must tackle 'monopolistic' provider BT, says shadow digital minister Chi Onwurah

Shadow digital economy minister and former Ofcom head Chi Onwurah has called on the communications regulator to tackle BT’s hold on the broadband market, ahead of its major sector review next week. Speaking to The Register, Onwurah said it is imperative that the once-in-a-decade review addresses the nationwide lack of …
Kat Hall, 15 Feb 2016
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Carly Fiorina makes like HP and splits – ex-CEO quits White House race

After her campaign garnered just four per cent of the vote in the New Hampshire primaries, Carly Fiorina has announced that she has suspended her run to be US commander in chief, but will carry on campaigning. "I've said throughout this campaign that I will not sit down and be quiet. I'm not going to start now," she said in a …
Iain Thomson, 10 Feb 2016
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UK govt right to outsource everything 15 years ago – civil service boss

The chief executive of the civil service, John Manzoni, has defended the government's decision to outsource everything 15 years ago, telling MPs it was "what everyone did at the time". Speaking at a Public Accounts Committee hearing yesterday, Manzoni said there was nothing wrong with outsourcing, but the government must now …
Kat Hall, 02 Feb 2016
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Met Police: Yes, outsourcing IT to Steria has 'risks'

The deputy commissioner of the Met Police, Craig Mackey, has acknowledged that the force's IT strategy, which includes slashing jobs in a mega outsourcing deal with Steria, is not without risk. Last year the Metropolitan Police announced it was cutting hundreds of jobs in a 10-year £216m mega deal with Sopra Steria, a cross- …
Kat Hall, 27 Jan 2016
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Government in-sourcing: It was never going to be that easy

Comment Having thrown out the baby with the bathwater in its "outsource everything" drive beginning nearly two decades ago, Whitehall is now keen to bring tech staff back in-house. But how much roadmap does it have for breaking its soon-to-expire mega deals and for "transforming" IT? The chief exec of the civil service, John Manzoni, …
Kat Hall, 22 Jan 2016
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Gov must hire 'thousands' of techies to rescue failing projects

The government needs to bring in "thousands" of digital tech folk to lower the high number of failing IT transformation projects, the chief executive of the civil service has said. Addressing the Public Accounts Committee about findings that one-third of big government projects will fail in this Parliament, John Mazoni said …
Kat Hall, 21 Jan 2016
Telstra phone booth by Ed Dunens from Flickr https://www.flickr.com/photos/blachswan/

Telstra costed fibre to the premises before it was Telstra

Australia had a shot at building a national fibre-to-the-premises (FTTP) network in the 1990s, but decided not to press the go button. The opportunity arose during the nation's awful hash of telecommunications policy leading up to the privatisation of Telstra in 1997. Nearly a decade before that, the Hawke government …

MoJ extends yet another IT contract in transition to 'tower model'

The Ministry of Justice has extended yet another chunk of its mega National Offender Management IT contracts, in a further sign the department is struggling to break away from its decade-long big IT agreements. The Offender Management National Infrastructure consists of 43 data centres around the UK, and was a 10-year deal …
Kat Hall, 12 Jan 2016

Biz jabber tool Slack realises it needs a Chief Security Officer

Slack has just hired a Chief Security Officer, with former Palantir CISO Geoff Belknap coming in to shore up the security of a cloud-based operation holding an awful lot of sensitive business communications. Slack, the team collaboration tool masquerading as an unadventurous man's IRC, has seen huge adoption across the …

British bureaucrats are world's most social-media-tastic

Cheer up, Britain. Your government may not be able to control either its borders or its rivers, and it may have sent its farmers back to using pen and paper and telephone hotlines. But there's one way it still leads the world, according to the Head of the British Civil Service. The Whitehall supremo says the UK is the best in …
Andrew Orlowski, 07 Jan 2016
America

NSA spying on US and Israeli politicians stirs Congress from Christmas slumbers

After two years of doing little about the mass surveillance revealed by Edward Snowden, the US Congress has sprung into action in less than two days – with investigations into the NSA spying on some the legislature's members. On Tuesday the Wall Street Journal reported that conversations between members of Congress and senior …
Iain Thomson, 31 Dec 2015
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MPs slam mandarins over failed GP IT system

Updated MPs have today slammed "the severe failures" of an IT system designed to allow the extraction of data from all GP practice computer systems in England. The General Practice Extraction Service started five years too late, is over-budget and still does not provide the full service required, said a report by the Committee of …
Kat Hall, 31 Dec 2015
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UK digital minister asks for input on strategy, lauds 'sharing economy' biz success

The Minister for Culture, Media and Sport* Ed Vaizey today opened a consultation seeking ideas for gov.uk's next digital strategy over the next five years. Vaizey said that over the previous five years "digital fever exploded from the cluster in east London, and has spread to every part of the country, making the UK truly a ‘ …
Kat Hall, 29 Dec 2015
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Assessing the UK’s Government Digital Service

The Year in Review For the Government Digital Service, 2015 has been a year of challenge and uncertainty. Many issues have dogged the body, but some of the most high profile included the £215m IT fiasco for farmers' rural payment allowances and the departure of Mike Bracken, the man whose name has become synonymous with the body, amid rumours that …
Kat Hall, 27 Dec 2015