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Enhancing the Cyber Security Posture of the Maltese Private Sector – The B SECURE Scheme

Publication Date: Oct 31, 2019
 


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As the business world is progressively being transformed into an automated and digitalised environment, one aspect that is often overlooked or underestimated is cyber security, where we often tend to misjudge the dependencies that we have forged into information technology and the importance of the safety and integrity of our data. And as technologies continue to introduce new features and capabilities that contribute to the efficiency and resource reduction of our processes, it becomes easier to understand the rapidness at which these technologies are introduced in our processes.

grp cyber.JPGThus, the need to incorporate cyber security into our digital solutions becomes more important than ever, which is seconded by several European Union regulations and other international requirements and initiatives that make cyber security obligatory for the stability of our economies, the wellbeing of our citizens and the safekeeping of our data, devices and solutions. Threats to the availability of our information systems can come from different sources and depending on the configuration of your systems and the intensity of the attack, the consequences may vary from small disturbances to scenarios where businesses have succumbed to the financial and reputational losses that these attacks brought with them. A national survey amongst Maltese businesses conducted by Cyber Security Malta found that 40% of respondents were negatively impacted by a cyber security incident, with attacks originating from fraudulent emails or scam calls, malicious software installed on their devices without their knowledge or ransomware. 83% of large organisations confirmed that they were a victim of at least one cyber security incident. Finally, almost all respondents (75% of SMEs and 83% of large organisations) agreed on the importance of carrying out a risk assessment to evaluate the resilience of their IT systems against potential threats to the integrity and security of their solutions and the data that they host.

martin cyber.JPGLocal Government acknowledges the importance to the Maltese economy for businesses to operate and offer their services globally through online means, whilst emphasising the importance of having the correct security measures in place to operate safely and in line with EU regulations. To this effect, yesterday Hon. Silvio Schembri officially announced the details of the B SECURE scheme during the first edition of the national Cyber Security Summit organised by Cyber Security Malta in collaboration with the Malta Information Technology Agency and the Parliamentary Secretary for Financial Services, Digital Economy and Innovation. The B SECURE scheme builds on the continuation and an extension of the efforts already dedicated within the public sector about cyber security, where several training and technical initiatives have been coordinated to increase the levels of cyber security on all fronts. It is the first time that the Maltese Government is directly heavily investing into the digital security of the private sector, offering opportunities that will increase the levels of security posture and preparedness across the Maltese islands. 

jonathan cyber.jpgThe scheme will offer possibilities that the private sector can take advantage of and enrol their employees for fully subsidised industry certified training courses such as Certified Information Systems Auditor (CISA), Certified Information Security Manager (CISM), Certified Cloud Security Knowledge (CCSK), Certified Information Systems Security Professional (CISSP), or specialised training to raise the level of cyber security awareness for executives and industry  professionals. The scheme will also include the possibility for local businesses to register for a risk assessment of their digital assets that will be covered through vulnerability assessments or penetration tests. These assessments will cover your wired network, wireless network, web application solutions and outward facing hosts for vulnerabilities that may give attackers the possibility of hijacking your system or steal the data within it. The results will then be analysed and explained in detail to the beneficiaries, where expert advice is included as part of the exercise to give options on the possible remediations to fix any vulnerabilities that are found.

In total the Scheme will be offering 330 hours of training and 123 hours of risk assessments. This is a golden opportunity that the local private sector can’t miss. Visit the B SECURE page within the Cyber Security Malta website (www.cybersecurity.gov.mt/bsecure) for all the details and apply now.