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Government promises more cash and anti-ransomware taskforce in fight against cybercrime | #hacking | #cybersecurity | #infosec | #comptia | #pentest | #ransomware


The government has published a review of its National Cybersecurity Strategy. It includes 18 new measures, including a counter-ransomware task force and financial support for SMEs

The government is to create a national anti-ransomware organisation and offer cash subsidies to small businesses to help fight cybersecurity threats.

In a mid-term review of the 2019-2024 Cyber Security Strategy launched by Communications Minister Eamon Ryan, SMEs “and other societal stakeholders” are to benefit from a “programme of financial support, in accordance with EU provisions, to improve cybersecurity resilience and facilitate innovation”.

The National Cyber Security Centre will also “establish and lead a National Counter-Ransomware Task Force to coordinate efforts to respond to this severe cyber threat”.

The proposals did not include any figures for how much will be provided or how it will be apportioned.

Ransomware continues to plague Irish businesses and public organisations, with Munster Technological University and a number of charities among the most high profile victims this year.

Recent research suggests that up to half of Irish small firms remain unprepared for a ransomware attack.

Larger organisations have also been badly stung, with Centric Healthcare fined €460,000 by the Data Protection Commissioner in connection with a ransomware attack where the data of 70,000 patients was compromised.

Other new measures added to the revised Cyber Security Strategy include the development of an expanded programme of joint training and exercises between the National Cyber Security Centre (NCSC), An Garda Síochána and the Defence Forces, as well as the establishment of an NCSC Advisory Council, “to be drawn from the cyber security industry and research community, as well as representatives of key stakeholders, to provide independent perspectives”.

The revised plan also pledges to publish an annual update on the implementation of the strategy, “to ensure accountability and transparency in the delivery of these measures”.

And Ireland’s national position on the application of international law in cyberspace will now receive a published update every year.

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