Brian Sims

Industry, police and academia join forces on Cyber Security Summit

ON MONDAY 10 October, the National Police Chiefs Council’s National Cyber Crime Programme brought together some of the most influential individuals in the UK business realm as part of the first National Cyber Summit for the UK Cyber Resilience Centre Network in order to discuss how to improve the cyber resilience of smaller and medium-sized organisations.

The landmark event, which was hosted by the City of London Police Commissioner Angela McLaren in her role as national lead for cyber and economic crime, played out at the offices of Microsoft in central London.

The National Cyber Resilience Centre Summit involved the police leads of each regional Cyber Resilience Centre, the Regional Advisory Board chairs from industry and National Cyber Resilience Centre Group ambassadors as well as representatives from the wider policing environment.

The project orchestrated to establish a Cyber Resilience Centre in every region was launched back in 2020 by the National Cyber Crime Programme to help smaller organisations make their cyber operations safer, more secure and more resilient. They do this through cyber security students making cyber resilience advice and support affordable and accessible for smaller organisations.  

The network was expanded last year with the launch of the aforementioned National Cyber Resilience Centre Group, itself a not-for-profit company funded and supported by the Home Office, policing and ambassador partners and set in motion to strengthen the reach of cyber resilience across the business community.

Exponential growth

Angela McLaren observed: “The Cyber Resilience Centre network has grown exponentially in a short space of time with several of the regional centres supporting over 1,000 local businesses who’ve signed up as members. The National Cyber Resilience Centre Summit was the first opportunity to bring all the regional Cyber Resilience Centres together with the national ambassadors. It was a great opportunity to develop the partnership between police and industry, share Best Practice and develop our plans for moving forward.”

Under Cyber PATH, the National Cyber Resilience Centre Group is building a national talent pipeline of students who will form the next generation in tackling cyber crime thanks to harbouring the essential skills, knowledge and on-the-job training they’ll need.

Cyber PATH and the Cyber Resilience Centres work closely with local universities to hand-pick the talented cadre of students, who then work alongside senior cyber security practitioners and police officers so as to deliver high-quality, affordable and tailored cyber resilience services for today’s smaller businesses and organisations.

Planning for the future

Detective Superintendent Nick Bell, CEO of the National Cyber Resilience Centre Group and national policing director for the Cyber Resilience Centres, said: “We are delighted that all those involved in the national and regional development of the cyber resilience centre network were able to join forces for the National Cyber Resilience Centre Summit.”

Bell continued: “There’s a great deal of work underway on this vital issue for businesses, their supply chains and, ultimately, their customers. It involves the police service, some brilliant private sector ambassadors and academics up and down the country. The National Cyber Resilience Centre Summit served to highlight how far we’ve already come and will now help us to plan for how we continue to accelerate the support we can afford businesses across the UK in terms of tackling cyber crime.”

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