Defense Minister Says UK Must Win Cyber Security Fight

In an article dated November 9, 2010, BBC News reports that UK Defense Minister Nick Harvey "has emphasized the cyber threat facing the UK, saying it is 'a matter of time' before terrorists use it as a method of attack."  During a speech in London, Harvey warned that, "in the wrong hands, a laptop could be as effective a weapon as a cruise missile."

In the recently published National Security Strategy, the UK listed cyber security as a "tier one" threat, placing it alongside terrorism and a flu pandemic.  According to the Strategy, tier one threats are those that "the government [is] giving highest priority to."


In a statement on the tier one status of cyber threats, Harvey said,

"The fact that cyber security has bee identified as one of the top national security threats for the UK over the next five years indicates both the likelihood of such an attack and  the level of impact.  It can only be a matter of time before terrorists begin to use cyber space more systematically, not just as a tool for their own organisation, but as a method of attack."


To that end, BBC reports that the UK government will spend £650 million (approx. $1.045 billion) "over the next four years on a National Cyber Security Progamme, aimed at protecting individuals and the national infrastructure from hostile computer attacks."  According to the article, "BBC defense correspondent Jonathan Beale said Mr. Harvey had spelt out his belief that the threat was real and the government must work with industry and academia to combat it" (emphasis added).  

Thus far, the focus of the UK's response to cyber threats has been defensive, rather than offensive.  


The full article can be found above, or here.

The UK's National Security Strategy can be found here


It's worth noting that the UK Defense Minister acknowledges academia's role in combating cyber threats.  




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Professor William Snyder

Professor William C. Snyderis a member of the faculty of the Institute for National Security and Counter-terrorism at Syracuse University after fifteen years with the United States Department of Justice.

Ryan D. White

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Christopher w. FolkChristopher W. Folk

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Anna Maria Castillo

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Jennifer A. CamilloJennifer A. Camillo

is a 2015 graduate of Syracuse College of Law and is a prosecutor. She has served as a law clerk in the United States Attorney’s Office for the Northern District of New York and the Cayuga County District Attorney’s Office and as an extern in the Oneida County District Attorney’s Office. She was a member of the Syracuse National Trial Team and was awarded the Tiffany Cup by the New York Bar Association for her trial advocacy achievements.

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is both a scholar and a Federal Agent of the Federal Criminal Police Office of Germany. (Opinions expressed here are his own and not any part of official duty.) Full biography