William Eichler 30 April 2018

Council chiefs get £1.5m to ‘bolster’ cyber security

Council chiefs get £1.5m to ‘bolster’ cyber security image

The Local Government Association (LGA) has been awarded £1.5m to help councils defend themselves against hackers and other cyber security threats.

The LGA will use a part of this National Cyber Security Programme funding to carry out a ‘stocktake’ of existing cyber security arrangements within all councils in England.

The funding, which was provided by the cabinet office, is for the 2018/19 period, with an opportunity to bid for further funding in the autumn.

Cyber security is a growing concern for local government and councils are already investing in a range of measures to repel, block and isolate cyber-attacks, such as implementing firewalls and scanning software, training their workforce, and carrying out cyber resilience exercises.

As well as helping local authorities to establish good practice, the LGA’s ‘stocktake’ will allow them to identify which councils require additional support when it comes to cyber security.

‘Councils take cyber security extremely seriously, but as we have seen through recent attacks, there is a constant need to review and bolster cyber security defences where appropriate,’ said the chairman of the LGA’s Improvement and Innovation Board, Cllr Paul Bettison.

‘Councils hold significant amounts of sensitive data which is why it is hugely important that we have the necessary protections in place.

‘This funding will be used by the LGA to help councils share best practice and strengthen their ability to mitigate against cyber threats.’

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Local Government News

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The March issue of Local Government News explores alternative funding channels that are available to councils beyond the Public Works Loan Board, what hurdles merging councils face in coming together, and how local government is handling GDPR.

This issue also has a special highways and street lighting section exploring how councils can use lighting to embark on their smart city journey and using IoT technology to weather the storm.

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