£2m spent by Holy­rood on pro­tect­ing com­put­ers from hack­ers

Scottish Daily Mail - - TERROR ON THE TUBE - By Rachel Wat­son Deputy Scot­tish Po­lit­i­cal Editor

MORE than £2mil­lion has been spent de­fend­ing Scot­tish Gov­ern­ment com­puter sys­tems fol­low­ing at­tacks by hack­ers.

Three sig­nif­i­cant at­tempts have been made by cy­ber­crim­i­nals in the last two years to ac­cess Scot­tish Gov­ern­ment com­puter sys­tems, while at­tacks have also been launched against the NHS and Holy­rood.

In a bid to counter the grow­ing threat, min­is­ters spent more than £2mil­lion in three years and are set to spend £1mil­lion in the next year.

Of­fi­cials have also com­mit­ted to in­creas­ing fund­ing and ex­plor­ing new de­fence meth­ods in a bid to pro­tect in­for­ma­tion within the pub­lic sys­tems.

Cy­ber at­tack­ers at­tempted to breach gov­ern­ment sys­tems twice last year us­ing ran­somware, while another at­tempt was made this year us­ing mal­ware.

New doc­u­ments re­leased un­der Free­dom of In­for­ma­tion leg­is­la­tion re­veal min­is­ters are step­ping up at­tempts to thwart those launch­ing at­tacks on com­puter sys­tems.

Cary Hen­dricks, global op­er­a­tions di­rec­tor of Glas­gow cy­ber se­cu­rity firm ID Cy­ber So­lu­tions, claimed the Gov­ern­ment is still not spend­ing enough on pro­tec­tion.

He said: ‘Things are get­ting bet­ter but they are nowhere near where they should be.’

A Scot­tish Gov­ern­ment spokesman said: ‘The Scot­tish Gov­ern­ment faces a con­tin­ual and evolv­ing threat of cy­ber at­tacks, and we take our cy­ber se­cu­rity very se­ri­ously.’

‘Con­tin­ual and evolv­ing threat’

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