Cluster

MI5’s cyber-attack warning

PG
Tuesday, 26-June-2012

 

LONDON: MI5 is working to counter "astonishing" levels of cyber-attacks on UK industry, the organisation's chief has said.
 
In his first public speech for two years, Jonathan Evans warned internet "vulnerabilities" were being exploited by criminals as well as states. The attacks were a threat to the integrity of information, he added.
 
Mr. Evans also warned the London 2012 Olympics was an "attractive target" for terrorist groups, but said security preparations were well under way.
 
For this reason the Games would not be an easy target even though there was no doubt some terrorist networks had considered carrying out an attack, he said.
 
In the speech on Monday night, Mr. Evans spoke of MI5's efforts to tackle "industrial-scale processes involving many thousands of people lying behind both state sponsored cyber espionage and organised cyber crime".
 
The head of MI5 presented an overview of the threats he says Britain faces through the Olympics and beyond.
 
He told the audience at London's Mansion House the Games would present an attractive target since London would be the centre of worldwide attention but said MI5 was "far from complacent".
 
Leave has been restricted at Thames House - MI5 headquarters - and a clock in the entrance foyer counts down to the opening ceremony.
 
Surface-to-air missiles could be deployed at six sites in London during the Games So far it is thought there is little credible intelligence of major threats and the overall threat level remains at substantial - a notch below the "severe" level which it stood at for many years.Half a million people have been checked as part of the accreditation process, which MI5 has helped with, and it is thought a number of individuals have been denied accreditation based on national security checks.
 
Mr. Evans cautioned against thinking the terror threat had evaporated in the wake of Osama Bin Laden's death.
 
"In back rooms and in cars and on the streets of this country there is no shortage of individuals talking about wanting to mount terrorist attacks here," he said.
 
In the past about 75% of counter-terrorist casework was linked in some way to Pakistan or Afghanistan. That had now been reduced to below 50%, he said.
 



    

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