EDS chief: prepare for cybercrime wave

The war in Afghanistan will create a massive wave of cyber crime, and the UK is ill equipped to cope.

The war in Afghanistan will create a massive wave of cyber crime, and the UK is ill equipped to cope.

That was the claim made by David Spinks, European director of information assurance at outsourcing giant EDS, at this week's TMA conference in Brighton.

"Business continuity planning and security is not about installing the latest new firewall or other solution, but anticipating what could happen," Spinks said.

"My warning to businesses is that if the drugs trade is stalled as a result of the war, the people involved in this trade will step up their efforts in other areas like cybercrime."

Spinks claimed UK authorities were poorly equipped to deal with the threat. The national police computer forensics team only has 15 staff and a budget of £25m over five years, he said.

These resources would be lucky to pay for one or two major cybercrime cases a year at the most, Spinks added.

"It's important that the problems and the threats are realised at board level," the EDS boss told delegates.

If you ask board members and system administrators the same question about whether they have been victims of attacks, you will get a completely different percentage between the two. System administrators often know the risks, but they need more support from company heads to deal with the problem."

Spinks called for an open exchange of information about attacks, and said a co-ordinated effort between business and the authorities is the way forward in achieving this.

He revealed that enquiries received by EDS about business continuity and information protection plans had gone up well over 100% following the 11 September attacks on the US and the start of the war in Afghanistan.

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