UK to host global cybersecurity centre

The UK’s Foreign Secretary William Hague has announced that a global centre for cybersecurity will be opened at the University of Oxford.The Global Centre for Cyber Security and Capacity Building will work to help countries develop comprehensive plans to deal with online threats.

The government will provide £1 million to fund the centre for the next two years.

It will act as “a beacon of expertise” according to Mr Hague. “The new global centre for cybersecurity will co-ordinate global work on cyber-threats and cyber-policies which will help protect the UK’s security,” he said.

Countries around the world are keen to increase their levels of cybersecurity in the wake of an unprecedented number of threats.

The US says that it has seen a steady rise in the number of cybersecurity attacks.

Last month a US-based cybersecurity firm Mandiant accused a branch of China’s military of stealing hundreds of terabytes of data from at least 141 organisations around the world. Please see our blog post- APT Chinese hacking- new Advance Persistent Threat revealed by new research

Part of the Oxford centre’s remit will be to ensure that countries have the necessary skills, workforce and technology to tackle online threats.

It will create a guide on some of the key issues as well as looking at ways to ensure that countries have access to relevant expertise on solving problems.

Prof Ian Goldin, director of the Oxford Martin School, where the centre will be based, said: “We are convinced that integrated thinking on cybersecurity is required to address these challenges.”

“Modern cybercriminals work in a collaborative fashion, sharing information on targets, tactics and new approaches to infiltrate networks amongst themselves – often in state sponsored efforts to steal critical information from other countries,” he said.

“The planned cybersecurity hub at the University of Oxford is a way for the ‘good guys’ to collectively fight back, as the global threat can no longer be ignored.”

The logic that group thinking will be required to crack cyber threats makes sense given that the perpetrators are grouped together in the first place.

Plus given the escalation of the mathematical permutations of cracking codes- a groupthink approach will achieve greater cumulative successes.