The Unknown Threat - Cybersecurity in the UK Public Sector

As cyber-criminals look for new ways to infiltrate organisations and steal data, ransomware is a growing threat to public sector organisations across the world.

Ransomware strikes fear among those targeted, not least because it prevents access to data until a ransom is paid. This can cripple an organisation and cost millions in damages.

In February this year, Redcar and Cleveland Borough Council in the north-east of England saw first-hand the damage that can be caused by a ransomware assault, after an attack disabled its IT servers for weeks, costing up to £18m in damages.

The on-going coronavirus crisis has further highlighted how cyber criminals will use any means they can to mount an attack and as all these incidents demonstrate, ransomware is a major and growing challenge affecting all local and central governments.

Although the UK public sector has made good progress since WannaCry, there is a lack of awareness of ransomware and cybersecurity best practice that is leaving it vulnerable to ransomware and other forms of cyber-attack, according to our new survey of 1,000 UK public sector employees:

  • Much of the problem is caused by a lack of awareness of ransomware: almost half of workers have not even heard of this type of malware.
  • Meanwhile, 77% of government employees haven’t been trained on how to recognize ransomware, leaving them in a vulnerable position if they were to be attacked.

Download further insights from the survey now:

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