Government Communications Headquarters certifies six more Masters degrees in cyber security

Ciaran Martin, director general for cyber security at Government Communications Headquarters (GCHQ), has announced that, as the National Technical Authority for Information Assurance, GCHQ has now certified six more Masters degrees focused on the subject of cyber security.

The new certified Masters are available at the University of Kent, Queen’s University Belfast, Royal Holloway (University of London), the University of Southampton, the University of South Wales and University College London.

This is the third time that GCHQ has awarded certification of Masters degrees in cyber security, and brings the current total to 18 certified Masters degrees from 14 universities.

Applications for certification were assessed by a panel of expert advisors drawn from across industry, academia and Government. The successful universities all had to meet the rigorous assessment criteria which demand a well-defined and appropriate degree content delivered to the very highest standards.

Digital forensics and computer science

In addition to certifying Masters degrees in general cyber security, this year – and for the first time – GCHQ has also awarded certification for Masters in digital forensics and Integrated Masters in computer science and cyber security.

With the UK being one of the most advanced digital economies in the world, GCHQ-certified Masters degrees assist employers in recruiting skilled staff and developing the cyber skills of existing employees in order to help make the UK one of the most secure places in which to do business in cyber space and also highly resilient to cyber attack.

GCHQ certification helps universities to attract high-quality students from around the world. Prospective students are able to make better-informed choices when looking for a highly-valued qualification.

McAfee unveils new Internet Security Hub

McAfee has unveiled a new Internet Security Hub – the Ultimate Guide to Security Threats – as part of a campaign designed to educate the general public about the increasing danger to their personal information online.

There were 5.1 million online fraud incidents and 2.5 million cyber crime offences reported in England and Wales in the last year alone. Despite this worrying level of crime online, McAfee has found that the average member of the UK public is still under-educated when it comes to protecting themselves in the digital space.

In a recent survey carried out by the Internet security expert, 90% of those taking part believed their online habits were secure. This was despite 35% of them either knowing someone who had been hacked or actually having been hacked themselves.

Incorrect signals of safety

McAfee also found that 27.7% of people haven’t updated their Internet security over the past 12 months, while only a third (34.6%) read the Terms and Conditions involved when downloading an app. When asked to identify a safe and secure web page, 90% of those questioned selected an incorrect signal of safety.

A spokesman for McAfee has commented on the data and the launch of the security hub. “Our survey reveals that there was a disparity between how safe we believe we are online and the reality of our online situation. 90% of us believe we’re secure online, despite almost a third of us having not updated our Internet security in over a year, in turn leaving those users susceptible to the worst viruses out there. The new Internet Security Hub is designed to help educate people on what to look out for when they’re online, and afford them a better understanding of why being safe and secure on the web is so important in this day and age.”

*Take a look at the Internet Security Hub: http://uk.mcafeestore.com/security-hub/guide-to-threats

About the Author
Brian Sims BA (Hons) Hon FSyI, Editor, Risk UK (Pro-Activ Publications) Beginning his career in professional journalism at The Builder Group in March 1992, Brian was appointed Editor of Security Management Today in November 2000 having spent eight years in engineering journalism across two titles: Building Services Journal and Light & Lighting. In 2005, Brian received the BSIA Chairman’s Award for Promoting The Security Industry and, a year later, the Skills for Security Special Award for an Outstanding Contribution to the Security Business Sector. In 2008, Brian was The Security Institute’s nomination for the Association of Security Consultants’ highly prestigious Imbert Prize and, in 2013, was a nominated finalist for the Institute's George van Schalkwyk Award. An Honorary Fellow of The Security Institute, Brian serves as a Judge for the BSIA’s Security Personnel of the Year Awards and the Securitas Good Customer Award. Between 2008 and 2014, Brian pioneered the use of digital media across the security sector, including webinars and Audio Shows. Brian’s actively involved in 50-plus security groups on LinkedIn and hosts the popular Risk UK Twitter site. Brian is a frequent speaker on the conference circuit. He has organised and chaired conference programmes for both IFSEC International and ASIS International and has been published in the national media. Brian was appointed Editor of Risk UK at Pro-Activ Publications in July 2014 and as Editor of The Paper (Pro-Activ Publications' dedicated business newspaper for security professionals) in September 2015. Brian was appointed Editor of Risk Xtra at Pro-Activ Publications in May 2018.

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