As cyber threats increase so does the value of monitoring your IT, say experts

The new National Security Strategy is set to classify cyber attacks as one of the most serious dangers currently facing the UK.

Attacks on UK computer networks will soon be categorised as a Tier 1 threat alongside acts of terrorism and an international military crisis.

In light of these developments, Good Practice Guide 13 (GPG 13), which was introduced by CESG, (the UK Government’s National Technical Authority for Information Assurance) has never been more important. It prescribes Protective Monitoring for all HMG ICT

In light of these development, effectively monitoring your IT systems, is more important than ever, said LogRhythm, a cyber security company.

LogRhythm argued that with budgets being tightened, the public sector needs to look for IT security solutions that do more than guard against threats, but also add real value across organisations and departments.

“We now find ourselves constantly reminded of how important it is to protect public and private infrastructure from the threat of cyber attacks,” said Ross Brewer, VP and MD of international markets at LogRhythm. “The Government is right to class these attacks as a 'Tier 1' threat, only last week a former US Homeland Security secretary told delegates at the RSA Conference that around 100 countries have cyber-espionage and attack capabilities, and that the use of these tools could even result in loss of life if systems like air-traffic control are targeted.”

Budget cuts and reorganisation plans are making the news on a daily basis and are placing the public sector in a state of flux. A key challenge facing the public sector is how to effectively monitor cyber activity using already stretched resources.

“Every IT related activity creates log data, leading to millions of individual incidents being logged on a daily basis. To comply with GPG 13 recommendations, organisations need to find solutions that automatically monitor all these logs, while also reporting and alerting on activities that warrant special attention,” continued Brewer. “Centralised logging and security information event management solutions are ideal for these requirements and can also provide the added advantage of automating the best practice principles necessary to ensure working policies are always observed. Even though IT security spending may escape the worst of the public sector budget cuts, in tough times like these, it is absolutely vital that IT systems can add value in as many areas as possible.”