Continuity plans rise up the agenda

Business continuity planning was high on the agenda for many companies in 2005 after the London bombings exposed the unreliability of the mobile phone network for those firms near the blast area.

Business continuity planning was high on the agenda for many companies in 2005 after the London bombings exposed the unreliability of the mobile phone network for those firms near the blast area.

Sainsbury's began working with its suppliers to check their business continuity plans, and organisations were urged to consider the impact bird flu could have on their IT services.

The need for greater professionalism in IT security was highlighted, as leading IT academics and professionals laid the foundations for the UK's first professional body for IT security. After a year of studies, negotiations and fund raising, the Institute for Information Security Professionals is expected to be up and running by the end of January 2006.

Computer crime featured heavily during the year, with businesses facing losses of at least £2.4bn, and nearly 90% of firms experiencing at least one incident of computer crime, according to the Hi-Tech Crime Unit.

In March, news emerged that an organised crime group had attempted a £220m high-tech heist against Sumitomo bank. Insiders are believed to have installed hardware key-loggers on systems used to transfer money overseas.

In May, the National Infrastructure Security Co-ordination Centre, warned that groups in the Far East were attacking government and financial computer systems with targeted Trojans.

Two-factor authentication was another recurring theme, as online fraud rates from phishing and Trojans trebled. In October HSBC began trials of one-time password generators with 30,000 online banking customers.

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