Scottish government launches cyber-crime action plan for ScotlandFri 25 May, 2012 // Briony Williams
The first e-Crime Scotland Summit was held on Monday May 21st in Edinburgh. It featured talks on the threat posed to Scottish businesses by cybercrime, and steps that firms can take to reduce their exposure to these risks. It was aimed at businesses of all kinds, and was supported by the Royal Bank of Scotland and Scottish Enterprise.
The e-Crime Summit was organised by e-Crime Scotland, which is connected to the Scottish Financial Crime Group, and which has been working with the Scottish Business Crime Centre, the Scottish Government and a wide range of businesses in Scotland. The summit also had input from the Scottish Crime and Drug Enforcement Agency, and the police.
The e-Crime Summit was aimed principally at small and medium-sized enterprises. Gary Ritchie, Assistant Director of the Scottish Business Crime Centre, said “We’ve found that larger businesses continue to develop research and refine their response to the threat of e-Crime, but the smaller businesses can sometimes fall behind in the fight against on-line attack. This leaves them as viable targets for the online criminal as they may have a lack of cyber confidence, be unaware of where to direct concerns and, ultimately, what they need to do to become more secure.”
At the summit, an announcement was made by Justice Minister Kenny MacAskill that the Scottish government is to set up a cyber-security action plan to deal with cyber-crime and online security. This initiative will be headed by Fergus Ewing, Scotland’s Minister for Energy, Enterprise and Tourism.
Mandy Haeburn-Little, Executive Director of the Scottish Business Crime Centre, responded warmly to the announcement, and was quoted as saying that it “provides clear recognition of the scale and importance of cyber-crime in Scotland. Cyber-crime is not a fad or an issue solely for IT specialists. It is a clear and present danger for all businesses regardless of size or sector.” The Scottish Business Crime Centre estimates that Scottish businesses lose about £5 billion a year to cyber-criminals.
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