A coalition of 10 organisations – including the Scottish government, Police Scotland and the Scottish Business Resilience Centre (SBRC) – have clubbed together to set up the CyberScotland Partnership, designed to respond to calls for clarity around cyber security from both private individuals and businesses.
Launched today as part of CyberScotland Week, the National Cyber Security Centre (NCSC)-supported resource will provide a central online hub to offer resources for anyone seeking information and support across a number of cyber security and business resilience issues – as well as cyber careers and skills support and guidance.
“The new Strategic Framework for a Cyber Resilient Scotland, launched by the deputy first minister earlier this week, outlines Scotland’s intention to be a digitally secure and resilient nation,” said Ivan McKee, Scotland’s minister for trade, innovation and public finance.
“The CyberScotland Partnership will help drive forward this ambition. As well as providing advice and guidance, improved coordination of skills opportunities, the partnership will help to promote Scotland’s flourishing cyber security products and service industry. Greater awareness of the cyber risks leads to greater demand for solutions and our cyber security industry can produce innovative solutions and offer high-quality employment.”
McKee added: “The organisations involved in this partnership play leading roles in effectively delivering the new Strategic Framework. A formal collaboration will further increase our effectiveness and reduce duplication of effort. The partnership will further reinforce Scotland as a global leader in the battle against cyber crime and a champion for ensuring a secure online environment for all.”
SBRC CEO Jude McCorry added: “The events of 2020 drove home the importance of remaining focused on cyber security. The reliance on technology for work and socialising grew alongside a corresponding rise in cyber attacks.
“The SBRC has discussed the formation of a collaboration between the organisations involved in the CyberScotland Partnership for some time, as we have seen some confusion from the public about where to get the support they need. Together, we can improve awareness and share knowledge of cyber security threats around Scotland. The CyberScotland.co.uk website is a seamless solution to ensure everyone can access the right information from the right source.”
This is the third year that Cyber Scotland Week has taken place and, according to Steve Hamilton, area vice-president of northern Europe at Tanium, the programme is proving a powerful booster for cyber security awareness in Scotland.
“Cyber Week Scotland provides a great chance to remind organisations, in both the public and private sector, that they need to cover both the technology and human aspects of cyber security to develop an adequate level of protection,” he said.
“Although technology alone can provide a certain level of security, research shows that 90% of cyber security breaches are still being caused by human error, which usually involves clicking on a malicious link in an email.”
According to a December 2020 report produced by Scotland IS, Scotland’s national cyber security “cluster” now includes about 230 companies, 48% of them either founded or based in Scotland, with around 10 new cyber ventures setting up in the country every year.
Almost three-quarters of Scottish universities now offer security courses, and the cyber workforce is also seeing steady growth, with 4,500 new jobs created over the past three years, mostly in and around Edinburgh.