The National Cybercrime Programme has today (23/11) announced that Police CyberAlarm will be made available to every business and organisation in England and Wales to help them understand and monitor the malicious cyber activity they face.
Funded by the Home Office, Police CyberAlarm acts like a ‘CCTV camera’ monitoring the traffic seen by a business’ connection to the internet. It will detect and provide regular reports of suspected malicious activity, enabling a business to take steps to improve their cyber resilience.
Police CyberAlarm was initially introduced as a pilot in four regions across England and Wales but has now been given the go ahead to roll out to the remaining regions over the next two months.
Once a business or organisation becomes a Police CyberAlarm member, they will need to install the ‘CyberAlarm Virtual Server’ which will then collect and process traffic logs identifying suspicious activity from the firewall. Police CyberAlarm does not see any of the content of any network traffic it monitors the logs relating to the traffic to identify suspicious activity. It is designed to protect personal data, trade secrets and intellectual property.
As a Police CyberAlarm member, they will benefit from regular reports detailing suspicious and potentially malicious attack activity on their firewall/internet gateway. It will show them how they are being attacked, and where from so they can improve their cyber resilience. It will also help law enforcement identify current threats and take enforcement action against cyber criminals.
Police CyberAlarm can benefit any business with a computer network including SMEs, organisations, public and private sector, charities, education establishments and local government.
Commissioner of City of London Police, Ian Dyson in his role as NPCC lead for Cybercrime said: “Police CyberAlarm is a great example of what can be achieved when policing and private industry work together. We have been able to work with a partner to develop a tool which every business in England and Wales can benefit from. Any business or organisation with a computer network can sign up for free and join the growing network of Police CyberAlarm members.
“We know that the average cost of a cyber attack to a small business is around £11,000 and we know that there are thousands of successful attacks every day. Cyber Security should be a priority for every single business no matter how big or small that business is. This is a police led project which businesses can trust. There is no catch to signing up, it is being offered for free and we want to get as many businesses as possible across England and Wales involved.
“The more members we have, the more data we get which will provide law enforcement with a much richer intelligence picture about the current and emerging threats businesses are facing. The data will also be presented back to members in the form of regular reports to help them take steps to improve their cyber security. I would urge businesses to sign up and take advantage of all Police CyberAlarm has to offer.”
Security Minister James Brokenshire said: “Following successful initial trials this national roll-out couldn’t have come at a more crucial time. Police CyberAlarm is a crucial tool that will keep businesses across the nation safe online.”
Businesses can sign up on the cyberalarm.police.uk/#join website and check the list of regions where Police CyberAlarm is live. If it is not yet live in the region the business is in they can still register their interest for when it goes live.