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UK government describes role of the National Cyber Force (NCF)

by Mark Tyson on 20 November 2020, 13:11

Tags: UK Government

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Yesterday the UK government announced a new tranche of defence spending. The headline total of £16.5 billion of 'new money' will be used over the next four years to help keep British people safe asserted PM Boris Johnson. The investment would also safeguard "hundreds of thousands" of jobs and create 40,000 new roles, reported the BBC.

What has the above got to do with computers and information technology? Well, in a speech about the defence spending review the PM announced a partnership between the GCHQ and Ministry of Defence (MoD) has created a new National Cyber Force (NCF). This force will conduct cyber operations "to disrupt hostile state activities, terrorists and criminals threatening the UK’s national security," we were told. A typical task of the NCF might be to counter a terror plot or support a military operation. It seems like cyber has been properly recognised for its intelligence, tactical, and military potential. Ahead of the formation of the NCF the UK's various security agencies are known to have been conducting cyber operations from 2016.

Interestingly, some specific examples of tasks that the NCF might be engaged in include:

  • interfering with a mobile phone to prevent a terrorist from being able to communicate with their contacts;
  • helping to prevent the internet from being used as a global platform for serious crimes, including sexual abuse of children and fraud; and
  • keeping UK military aircraft safe from targeting by hostile weapons systems.

A press release published by the government said that the core of the NCF is staffed by personnel from the likes of GCHQ, the MoD, the Secret Intelligence Service (MI6) and the Defence Science and Technology Laboratory (Dstl) under a unified command.

General Sir Patrick Sanders of Strategic Command was quoted as comparing the NCF's formation to defend cyberspace to the birth of the RAF to defend our airspace. "Today’s announcement of the formation of the National Cyber Force to defend the UK in cyberspace marks a similar milestone and the imperative is just as vital because cyberspace is the most contested domain where our adversaries and our allies will meet over the next decade and beyond," explained Sir Patrick.

The UK is committed to "using its cyber capabilities in a responsible way and in line with UK and international law," said the official government statement.

 

 


HEXUS Forums :: 28 Comments

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I guess we have to mention adhering to international law in every briefing now that parliament decided they would break it in a very specific and limited way
To me, “The National Cyber Force” just sounds like a naff 80s kids TV action show, with people in neon colours adopting power poses during the title sequence!! :D
I'm sure they definitely won't be warrantlessly spying on they people they're supposed to be serving, policing speech, and posting propaganda. They already do this of course.
More money to go after mean tweets or are they actually planning to prevent some terrorism for once?
MarkI
I guess we have to mention adhering to international law in every briefing now that parliament decided they would undermine it
International law doesn’t actually exist. Its actually international treaties between Countries which can be changed at any time due to domestic laws are supreme to international treaties mentioned by the UK Supreme Court with Gina Miller case regarding Parliament, German Constitutional Court is supreme to EU treaties (laws) and even the EU have said their “laws” are supreme to the UN Charter. The EU has the largest tariffs (fine) in history ($5 billion) placed on them by the WTO in regarding with unfair advantage to Airbus with subsidies against USA aircraft manufacturers. Therefore the EU is not the ones to point fingers of blame in relation to breaking international treaties. The UK Government is protecting the people of Northern Ireland (UK) by using the internal market bill to send food to them because the EU has refused to add the UK to the third Country list meaning a ban of goods being imported into the EU from UK. This is because in the event of no free trade agreement according to the withdrawal agreement Northern Ireland remains in the EU single market and customs union against their consent to appease the protectionist block of the EU and Republic of Ireland. Maybe you should read more instead of silly comments about things you know nothing about.