Department for Digital, Culture, Media and Sport
Funding boost to help healthcare suppliers improve cyber security
- Also published by:
- National Cyber Security Centre
Funding boost to help healthcare suppliers improve cyber security,
- Businesses will be invited to get free government-funded cyber certification and training
- Medical suppliers and primary care providers set to benefit
Hundreds of the country’s vital healthcare firms are set to benefit from government funding to boost their cyber security, the Digital Infrastructure Minister Matt Warman yesterday announced, as part of London Tech Week.
The move comes after the National Cyber Security Centre (NCSC) identified a heightened cyber threat to the UK health sector in relation to the pandemic, with cyber crime groups attempting to steal sensitive intelligence, intellectual property and personal information from pharmaceutical companies and medical research organisations.
Small and medium-sized businesses, such as medical suppliers and primary care providers, are being invited to apply for a slice of the £500,000 funding for the initiative which will see all consultancy and certification costs covered by the government.
Participants can receive guidance and support to get accreditation from the government’s Cyber Essentials certification. This includes training to make sure all phones, tablets, laptops or computers are kept up-to-date, proper firewall usage to secure devices’ internet connections, and user access controls to manage employee access to services.
Firms could opt to receive support from one of the programme’s cyber experts, who will look at the organisation as a whole, identify its cyber security risks and help develop and implement a business continuity plan.
Digital Infrastructure Minister Matt Warman yesterday said:
We know there is a heightened cyber threat for healthcare businesses at the moment so we are releasing new funding to help those playing a vital role in the pandemic response to remain resilient.
I also urge all organisations to sign up to the government’s Cyber Essentials programme which contains a number of simple steps firms can take to get the fundamentals of good cyber security in place.
Paul Chichester, the NCSC’s Director of Operations, yesterday said:
Protecting healthcare has been our top priority during the Covid-19 pandemic and we have been working hard to ensure organisations can keep themselves secure.
While we will continue to support them, signing up to initiatives such as Cyber Essentials is an excellent way for organisations to help themselves.
Those who have not already taken up this offer should do so – it will help ensure they have fundamental security protections in place, even in the most challenging of times.
Despite good progress in recent years, almost half of all businesses (46 per cent) suffered a cyber breach or attack in the last 12 months, with one in three per cent (32 per cent) experiencing them at least once a week, according to the Cyber Security Breaches Survey 2020.
Recent graduates of the Cyber Essentials programme include an app development firm whose products have supported Covid-19 patients and clinical teams throughout the pandemic, a not-for-profit organisation offering vital youth programmes to disadvantaged young people across the North East, and a group providing accessible health services across Yorkshire during the Covid crisis.
A Cyber Essentials participant from the healthcare sector yesterday said:
As a key supplier of medical equipment to the NHS, we qualified for government funding for a Cyber Essentials check on our IT systems. It was simple to arrange, we found the assigned partner easy to work with and overall the service has been an excellent sanity check on our IT systems and processes to ensure we are working to the best current security practices. It is definitely worth doing if you can.
This announcement comes on the day the London Office for Rapid Cybersecurity Advancement (LORCA), the government-backed cyber innovation programme, reveals companies supported by LORCA have raised more than £150m in investment since it launched two years ago, more than triple the original target and 12 months ahead of schedule.
Latest News from
Department for Digital, Culture, Media and Sport
Thousands of women and girls to benefit from £15m Tampon Tax Fund27/11/2020 12:10:00
Ovarian Cancer Action, Beat, and Women in Prison among those receiving grants over £1m.
Government announces £16.5 million youth covid-19 support fund26/11/2020 12:10:00
An emergency funding package to protect the immediate future of grassroots and national youth organisations across the country has been announced by the Government.
New telecoms security law to protect UK from cyber threats25/11/2020 08:10:00
Telecoms companies in the UK must follow tougher security rules or face fines of up to ten per cent of turnover, under a new law laid in Parliament yesterday.
Culture Secretary announces return of fans to elite sports events and reopening of grassroots sport from 2 December24/11/2020 08:10:00
The return of limited numbers of fans to elite sports events and the reopening of grassroots sport from 2 December.
Culture Recovery Fund will bring Blackpool Tower Ballroom back to former glory23/11/2020 11:20:00
The Blackpool Tower Ballroom is the latest venue to receive a lifeline grant of £764,000 from the Government’s £1.57 billion Culture Recovery Fund.
Government announces £300 million Sport Winter Survival Package to help spectator sports in England20/11/2020 08:10:00
Major spectator sports in England will receive a combined £300 million cash injection to protect their immediate futures over the winter period.
30 creative teams awarded up to £100,000 each for Festival UK* 2022 R&D project17/11/2020 11:20:00
The creative teams will each receive up to £100,000 of investment to enable them to develop their ideas for the Festival UK* 2022.
Matt Warman's speech on digital identity at Identity Week 202016/11/2020 14:43:00
Opening remarks from the Minister for Digital Infrastructure, detailing the government's plans for digital identity in the UK