Wednesday, June 29, 2022
BusinessFormer cyber investigator drafted in to safeguard businesses from online attacks

Former cyber investigator drafted in to safeguard businesses from online attacks

THE SCOTTISH Business Resilience Centre (SBRC) has reached a “milestone” in appointing a former Police Scotland cyber investigator to a new role to combat online attacks.

Mike Smith will oversee the group’s growing cyber division in his job as Incident Response and Threat Intelligence Manager. 

Heading up the incident response helpline will be an integral part of the brief taken on by Smith, who has over 30 years’ experience in law enforcement. 

Mike Smith will be the group’s new Incident Response and Threat Intelligence Manager

Launched in 2020, the helpline has supported over 100 enquiries from SMEs who believe they have been the victim of some form of cyber attack. 

The first free service of its kind in the UK, business owners are able to understand the options available to them and recover more quickly, according to the SBRC. 

Smith previously worked alongside the group in his role within cyber prevention at Police Scotland, having also worked in the Safer Communites and School Links teams. 

He said: “The collaboration spearheaded by the SBRC between the private sector, Scottish Government, and other partners across public and third sectors is unprecedented and a clear testament to the importance of cross-sector support. 

“I’m confident the experience I’ve gained in cyber policing, including handling incidents, managing enquiries, and forensic work will help me and my colleagues at SBRC better support businesses in the private sector.”

The helpline was set up in response to a national rise in cyber attacks, in partnership with Police Scotland and the Scottish Government.

According to the Financial Times, the total number of cyber incidents has increased by a fifth compared to the annual UK average since 2016. 

In relation to businesses, a UK Government survey found that 46% of firms and charities reported a cyber attack in 2020. 

Intensified by the pandemic and lockdowns, 33% of those business say they experience a breach at least once a week, up from 22% in 2017. 

With a 14% increase in the number of attacks on small businesses, SBRC seek to represent those who perhaps don’t have the same financial means as larger companies. 

Jude McCorry, CEO of the SBRC, commented: “Having now assisted with 100 cyber incidents and counting, this felt like the perfect time to bring Mike in as Incident Response and Threat Intelligence Manager to lead the team and consider what more can be done to reduce cyber threats within organisations.

Smith added: “Cyber crime is a crime like any other; organisations with even slight concerns about digital criminal activity should report the crime to Police Scotland on 101 as well as calling the SBRC’s incident response helpline for guidance about IT security.”

Businesses can reach the cyber incident helpline by calling 01786 437 472 weekdays 9am-5pm.

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