back to article UK plans increased spending on cyber-security

Britain will have no option but to invest in better cyber-security, the Defence Secretary told MPs this week. An awkwardly-worded reply by Defence Secretary Liam Fox to questions in the House of Commons suggests that cuts in information security spending are not on the agenda for the Strategic Defence and Security Review (SDSR …


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  1. jake Silver badge

    Is it just me?

    Am I the only one who has noticed that anyone who uses the word "cyber" in an otherwise supposedly serious conversation about computers and networking is absolutely clueless on the subject?

    Just askin' ...

    1. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward


      No, it's not just you.

      I bet he prints off all his emails too.

      1. This post has been deleted by its author

    2. amanfromMars 1 Silver badge

      No, you are surely alone, but that does not make you right . It just means there are more wrong.

      "Am I the only one who has noticed that anyone who uses the word "cyber" in an otherwise supposedly serious conversation about computers and networking is absolutely clueless on the subject?" ..... jake Posted Tuesday 14th September 2010 12:34 GMT

      Clueless, jake? You cannot be serious. And what do you think El Reg investigative stalwarts, John "Security correspondent" Leyden, Lewis "Defence correspondent" Page and Lester "Special projects editor (Iberian Bureau)?" Haines will find out from the Government Muppets or the MOD Puppets regarding that which you can read here ..... Posted by AmanfromMars on 9/14/2010 6:43:00 AM ....

      Methinks Dr Fox will need to take a ...... well, let us imagine a green pill, rather than a blue or a red one, to give his brain a chance of getting his head around anything which has Blighty leading, rather than bending over and getting right royally shafted because of Intellectual Incapacity right at the front of the gravy train. But hey, NeuReal IT has Universal Application Capacity and Capability and is not Governed nor Bound to Endure the Folly of Muppets and Puppets, and as you can see here, are they given every fair and reasonable chance to prove them Fit for 21st Century Network InterNetworking Purpose.

    3. Anonymous Coward

      "Could I get that in cornflower blue?" the movie, win a free internet!

      Hearing the word "cyber" makes me think of 28.8 baud modems, BBS's, the movie "Hackers", the term phreaking, and the era of PSA's/after-school-specials like "Don't copy that floppy".

      I can't think of anyone with half a brain that has used that term in any serious way in the last 10 or so years.

      It's just "security" and it takes all types of bits and pieces to make it function properly. Two of the biggest being physical security, and data classification/handling-policy which are not remotely "cyber"-anything.

      *Nostradumbass here pulls out his crystal ball and peers into the future... sees billions of pounds thrown into new firewalls arbitrarily/randomly placed throughout the government network, IDS systems dropped in place without proper configuration or placement, disk encrytion haphazardly and inefectively rolled out, and absolutely no dolars spent on user training for data handling, proper and secure use of computer systems, etc.

      1. Stumpy


        The first rule is we don't talk about it...

        1. amanfromMars 1 Silver badge

          Errr.... Urgent Timely Message from Space to Sub Prime Ministerial Earthed Pedestrian Units

          ..... aka Useful Chickens?

          "Shh... The first rule is we don't talk about it..." ... Stumpy Posted Tuesday 14th September 2010 23:40 GMT

          In CyberSpace though, which is really a virtual and artificially created space and creative place, it is always talked about, which is why there are no first rules which would convey and relay .... Shh... The first rule is we don't talk about it...

          With nowhere to go to hide anything, are secrets a thing of the past, and have no place in the Future, although they do conveniently protect and mask a whole host of sins and crimes/petty scams and global frauds, both past and currently running in the present. Then is it probable you'll definitely hear the spooky whisperers whispering ... Shh... The first rule is we don't talk about it...

      2. Scorchio!!


        28.8 baud? Luxury!!!! I were chuffed when I could afford a 14.4 baud modem, and even then I had to save up for' internet account, tha knows!

  2. Sillyfellow

    you pay !

    our gvt wants to increase internet monitoring, censorship, and control systems... for your own protection, of course... but. we must finance this for the privilege of being controlled better.

    1. MinionZero

      Once upon a time in the land of defence funding...

      Little defence elves stood in hushed silence, transfixed (for their jobs depended upon it) by the words of their master, as he spoke anxiously unto his despotic overlord MPs. "Britain will have no option but to invest in better cyber-security", the Defence Secretary told MPs this week ... as he nervously shuffled in his seat, desperately trying to think up reasons to avoid any suggestion his department should suffer government cuts. "Ah I know", he thought, "lets hit them with some more FUD".

      For only yesterday in a somewhat bewildering burst of uncharacteristic inspiration (during an otherwise standard unproductive coffee morning) he suddenly though, "eureka!, them military types always have lots of money for FUD work, and everyone wants a share of their money, so I must get my work tied to their wealth and power, then nothing can go wrong for me!" and so here we all despondently sit, an army of serfs, our fate sealed by the words, "Developing a military cyber-security policy should not be the responsibility of the Ministry of Defence alone".

      The end ... well it is the end for the serfs, who now have to watch forlornly as their last remaining rights are dragged from them. But at least the masters of the little defence elves will live happily ever after.

      1. Scorchio!!


        I'd agree with you if I had not been keeping track of this for some years:

        The US grid has been 'hacked' and a variety of other disturbing things have been occurring there.

  3. Anonymous Coward

    LSM, SE Linux

    ..should be the starting point. SPARK Ada. Things like that.

    Oh wait, it would offend the chummies at Microsoft. Let's buy a mass license for virus scanners instead.

    Picture of a Penguin Security.

  4. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    The title is required, and must contain letters and/or digits. Really.? digits as in 2 fingers?

    Re Strong Type

    Would it be cheaper to bulk buy a whole set of VPN's instead of virus scanners, if no one in the Defence department knows how to use the Linux VPN or SSH, in fact come to that, VPN's are available for free even for Windows. Sim+n T+ols Gh+st VPN (not spam) springs to mind, if you don't mind any of our military secrets (sic) on German servers, or even the Onion router is still free, if you don't mind anyone knowing our military secrets (sic), but can't finger them ala wikileaks.

    And I don't suppose that the UK firewall would be a patch on either the Chinese or Australian version, in which case, why bother. All the services need to do is un-install any Adobe product from their systems and security will multiply exponentially.

    Re sillyfellow

    Controlled better?, maybe controlled more, they don't need a firewall for that, just more clueless plod.

    Any guesses which part of the welfare budget is going to finance this,or perhaps a 50p per month "tax" on your phone bill?

    1. Vic


      > Would it be cheaper to bulk buy a whole set of VPN's instead of virus scanners, if no one in the

      > Defence department knows how to use the Linux VPN or SSH




    2. Anonymous Coward


      ...don't use Linux. All from Euro commies like NSA. Oh wait, it says "U.S. Department of Defense Combat Support Agency".

      Mr Torvalds was recently naturalized as a U.S. citizen.

      Also, don't use other Naturalized Citizen's technology. It could shoot you to the moon ! ( I am referring to that Mad Scientist SS Obersturmbannführer Wernher von Braun - chief designer of the Saturn V)

      Commercial software is soo much more secure, as Great Engineers like Bill Gates of MS and Warnock of Adobe make sure of that. Really. No shit man. Read the news - daily Linux hacks, none on Adobe Reader. Linux is a threat to the free world and must be replaced preferrably by something from Adobe !


    Security starts at home

    I'm wondering what the point of UK cyber security spending might be?

    When BT are allowed to covertly intercept UK communications using Russian supplied spyware for three years on the trot, TalkTalk can covertly intercept UK communications using Chinese supplied spyware and even engage in replay attacks, Spinvox can send UK voicemails to God knows where for transcription, and UK Security Services set up an unencrypted online recruitment site cohosted with in the process revealing the personal details of a former "Senior Manager, Strategy, Communications and

    Policy, Centre for the Protection of National Infrastructure"....

    Our telecom security/counter espionage measures in the UK must be an utter laughing stock.

    1. Anonymous Coward

      The Only Hope that the crap will hit the fan spectaculary (latest nuke blueprints or Eurofighter Sourcecode on an encrypted torrent or wikileaks), some politicos have to resign and proper policies are put in place. That's how it works in a democracy.

      The best investment a defense ministry can make is to educate their personnel. "Wetware" is the biggest risk of all. There is more than enough good technology (like SE Linux, AppArmor, secure programming languages, firewalls, intrusion dectectors, statistical traffic analysis tools) out there as Free Open Source.

      The only problem is that most people (including MODers) are challenged to encrypt their USB memory sticks and control their usage. Other "Military Intelligence" services give a sh$t about analyzing logs (hello INSCOM). Wikileaks would not have been able to leak 70000 messages if anyone had analyzed the log files while that kid had been rummaging in their databases.

      They need as many programmers/unix admins as they have mechanics. As many Officers need to study computer science as study electrical engineering.

      1. Anonymous Coward


        I don't know why, but I read this here as

        "The only problem is that most people (including MODers) are challenged to encrypt their USB memory sticks and control their sausage."


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