UK government urged to use technology to reform security

The UK's approach to security needs radical reform, says Martin Sutherland, managing director of information intelligence firm Detica.

The UK's approach to security needs radical reform, says Martin Sutherland, managing director of information intelligence firm Detica.

The UK should take the opportunity to transform our approach to security in the light of public spending cuts and unease about public surveillance, he told the Homeland and Border Security Conference in London.

Instead, the UK should aim to deliver security more efficiently and effectively, with less cost and reduced intrusion, he said.

"We need to re-balance the competing needs of security, privacy and economy," said Sutherland.

Security should take a proportionate approach that uses intelligent risk-based methods to focus on where the risk is highest and remove further invasive analysis of those who pose little or no risk, he said.

"With all minds focused on reducing the fiscal deficit, we need to have a new debate on how we can maintain a proportionate approach to security at lower cost," said Sutherland.

He also called on government to stop collecting more information about citizens, and instead use what it already has in a more intelligent way.

"We need to adopt new, 'lean' solutions and services that are more appropriate to the needs of the 21st century," he said.

This means rationalising and joining up data already held within government, to transform the way it uses information and communications technology.

This will enable dramatic improvements in the way security is delivered both in and across organisations-at lower cost and in a proportionate manner, said Sutherland.

"By taking this approach, rather than a narrow focus on cuts, we can turn a crisis into an opportunity," he said.

Sutherland outlined a set of lean principles for smarter security in tighter times, including automation of labour-intensive manual processes and rationalisation of data, tools and processes across organisations.

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