An article in The MJ, with information sourced via Freedom of Information Act requests, has noted that cyber-attacks on UK council remote workers increased by 213% during the pandemic.

The requests which were made by global technology provider Insight, also showed that one in five local councils have make significant additional investment in security, and have spent an average of £46,000. 

The MJ reported that, ‘the Ministry of Housing, Communities and Local Government (MHCLG) has warned of the risk that councils will continue to be targeted, fewer than half (47%) of councils invested more of their security budget in increased security training for remote workers.’

We have found the real challenge for some councils is not just this increase in attacks, rather it is often a question of resources. Most district councils may only have one member of staff with a responsibility for security, or even worse, the responsibility is shared amongst the IT team.

Our answer to the lack of resource is SEGWARP – South East Government Warning, Advisory and Reporting Point – which is one of a number of groups around the country designed to bring together information security officers from local government. We aim to provide a one-stop shop for early warning, information sharing and best-practice advice around the latest cyber-security threats, and to offer the support through expert speaks and peer groups. 

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