flag that is half British and half EU photo

As the dust settles from the vote for the United Kingdom (UK) to leave the European Union (EU), many are rightfully focusing on the economic and political impact this will have on the financial markets, leadership and the overall stability of the EU.  One major issue not being discussed is what does the departure of the UK from the EU have on global cyber security and cybercrime prevention?

The UK was a critical player in the establishment of much of the cyber security framework and privacy laws throughout Europe.  In addition to the leadership, the UK is also a $18 Billion dollar annual contributor to the EU and held the top spot in defense spending amongst EU member countries a significant percentage of which was allocated to cyber security and cybercrime efforts both ongoing and investment in future technologies, techniques and information sharing platforms. 

This is not to say the UK will vacate its commitment to global cyber issues.  It could however lead to new and or different treaties needing to be established for information sharing, investigation and jurisdiction protocols, and a host of other agreements related to conducting cyber security and cybercrime operations, particularly if more countries decide to withdraw from the EU or were opposed to previously established agreements.  This potentially could set back not only ongoing investigation but could also create roadblocks to the pursuit of future cyber criminals.  

So what does this mean to the millions of businesses, organizations and institutions who rely on the internet and cyber space for the success of their operations?  Having a strong, progressive cyber security program in place is more important now than it ever has been.  Based on the recent events and potential risks that may result, it is highly recommended that organizations take a proactive approach and:

  1. Conduct regular and more frequent audits, assessments, and stress tests of network security systems to prevent data breeches and network takeovers 
  2. Conduct more frequent employee cyber security awareness training
  3. Take inventory of your data assets and where the  these assets are currently located and stored on the network
  4. Review network user access privileges
  5. Review third party user agreements and privileges
  6. Review log files on a more frequent basis to detect any possible changes or anomalies

For more information or assistance with these recommendations, please contact Neustar Professional Services, Security Services