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MP warns about cyber security threats to the Armed Forces

January 9, 2013 3:27 PM
The Government must be more vigorous in its approach to cyber security says Colchester MP Sir Bob Russell who is a member of the Defence Select Committee which today published a report on the subject.
Sir Bob said: "Our Inquiry, as detailed in the Report, has established that cyber threats can evolve quickly and poses serious consequences for the nation's security."
Evidence received by the Committee suggested that in the event of a sustained cyber attack, the ability of the Armed Forces to operate effectively could be seriously compromised due to their dependence on information and communication technology.
The Committee, on which Sir Bob is the only Liberal Democrat member, has asked the Government to set out details of the contingency plans it has in place should such an attack occur."
He endorsed the comment of the Chairman of the Defence Select Committee, former Defence Minister the Rt Hon James Arbuthnot MP, that the Government needs to put in place the necessary mechanisms, trained people and policies "which take into account both the opportunities and the vulnerabilities which cyberspace presents."
The Committee was impressed with co-operation which had already been established between the Ministry of Defence and private sector contractors, and welcomed the Government's commitment to foster a vibrant and innovative cyber security sector in the UK including a distinct role for the MOD to deliver military capabilities both in terms of defence and offensive capability.
Sir Bob observed: "Conventional warfare and defence preparation has evolved over centuries, but what we are now witnessing is something completely new - the real risk of cyber attacks. The Defence Committee is therefore right to investigate this potentially worrying scenario."