The Role of Governments in Defending Against Growing Cyberthreats

The Role of Governments in Defending Against Growing Cyberthreats

Gov CIO Outlook | Thursday, May 12, 2022

It is unquestionably challenging to develop and implement a national cybersecurity plan.

FREMONT, CA: In growing geopolitical and geoeconomics tensions, state-sponsored cyber warfare is one of the most significant challenges nations face today. State-sponsored cyberattacks are invading the essential infrastructure of countries around the world, as evidenced by election tampering, the alleged attempted theft of sensitive COVID-19 vaccine research, and power outages for over a quarter-million people.

State and non-state actors alike possess more excellent technical proficiency, motivation, and financial resources than ever before to launch disruptive assaults against a nation's critical infrastructure. Any attack on a country's key infrastructure in one industry might cause disruptions in other sectors. For instance, an attack on a country's telecommunications infrastructure might impede electronic payments.

However, this is only a portion of the issue. Individuals and organizations rely on digital connectivity in nearly every area of their lives. Most individuals cannot envision even a few hours without internet connectivity. Every second, an estimated 127 new devices connect to the internet globally. Any interruption in digital connectivity is regarded as an impediment to progress.

Due to the COVID-19 pandemic, our reliance on all things digital has dramatically increased. As remote labor has become a vital part of our economies and medical care, the increasing dependence of citizens and businesses on all things digital will only increase.

However, as more devices, users, and businesses connect to the internet, the risk of cyberattacks rises. Societies and economies cannot flourish if a government cannot guarantee reliable and secure digital connectivity.

As a result, more than a hundred nations have devised national cybersecurity defense strategies to confront the cybersecurity threats that threaten their residents, enterprises, and critical infrastructure. To assist emerging governments, we analyzed and compared the cybersecurity plans of eleven nations.

Governments that prioritize these areas may be better able to prevent cyberattacks, reduce their harm, and defend their population, businesses, and critical infrastructure.

Nationally dedicated cybersecurity agency

Best-in-class nations assign a single organization—typically a national cybersecurity agency—to set and drive the cybersecurity plan for the entire nation. This entails developing a cohesive national cybersecurity strategy with a portfolio of initiatives, including protecting the country's critical infrastructure, mobilizing the response to cyber incidents, defining cybersecurity standards, enhancing cyber awareness among citizens, and developing the cybersecurity capabilities of professionals.

The NCA must possess the necessary technical skills and competence to fulfill these obligations. The NCA often partners with and mobilizes other government and business sector groups to fill any shortfalls in capability. The National Cybersecurity Agency of the United Kingdom, for example, collaborates closely with other government agencies, such as the Department of Digital, Culture, Media, and Sport, to enhance the capabilities of the nation's cybersecurity professionals.

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