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Funding boost to help healthcare suppliers improve cyber security

Thursday September 10th, 2020

Businesses will be invited to get free government-funded cyber certification and trainingGovernment Opportunities

Medical suppliers and primary care providers set to benefit

Hundreds of the country’s vital healthcare firms are set to benefit from government funding to boost their cyber security, the Digital Infrastructure Minister Matt Warman announces today, as part of London Tech Week.

The move comes after the National Cyber Security Centre (NCSC) identified a heightened cyber threat to the UK health sector in relation to the pandemic, with cyber crime groups attempting to steal sensitive intelligence, intellectual property and personal information from pharmaceutical companies and medical research organisations.

Small and medium-sized businesses, such as medical suppliers and primary care providers, are being invited to apply for a slice of the £500,000 funding for the initiative which will see all consultancy and certification costs covered by the government.

Participants can receive guidance and support to get accreditation from the government’s Cyber Essentials certification. This includes training to make sure all phones, tablets, laptops or computers are kept up-to-date, proper firewall usage to secure devices’ internet connections, and user access controls to manage employee access to services.

Firms could opt to receive support from one of the programme’s cyber experts, who will look at the organisation as a whole, identify its cyber security risks and help develop and implement a business continuity plan.

This announcement comes on the day the London Office for Rapid Cybersecurity Advancement (LORCA), the government-backed cyber innovation programme, reveals companies supported by LORCA have raised more than £150m in investment since it launched two years ago, more than triple the original target and 12 months ahead of schedule.

Digital Infrastructure Minister Matt Warman said:

“We know there is a heightened cyber threat for healthcare businesses at the moment so we are releasing new funding to help those playing a vital role in the pandemic response to remain resilient.

I also urge all organisations to sign up to the government’s Cyber Essentials programme which contains a number of simple steps firms can take to get the fundamentals of good cyber security in place.”

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