This year, Naimuri are an exhibitor at CyberUK. A few of us from the company attended as delegates last year and all agreed it was fantastic, so we were clearly expecting a great conference. So far, we have not been disappointed. It is a well organised, informative, positive event that exudes a buzzing atmosphere from start to finish.
Day one of CyberUK this year is CyberUK strategy, which focuses, as the name suggests, on the strategy side of cyber security and is aimed at business leaders and decision makers.
What Are We Doing?
This year, at Naimuri, we are exhibiting our cyber security services aimed specifically at SMEs.
We are also attempting to stand out at the conference by using a concept of “communication through illustration”. We are asking some delegates to have a 5-10 minute discussion on relevant cyber security topics, whilst two students from Manchester School of Art illustrate the conversation. This provides a new and engaging way of displaying the information from the discussion, whilst encouraging the language and theme to stay clear and accessible.
The response to this so far has been great. People appear to be engaged and interested, whilst there has been a positive reception received from several key and well respected individuals from the NCSC and industry.
It validates our willingness as a company to look at things in a new way and we’re definitely going to carry on exploring these concepts.
What’s Happened So Far?
The morning kicked off with the plenary sessions, with introductions and keynotes from several senior people from the NCSC, as well as some senior people from industry and academia.
We began with the conference chair and CEO of the NCSC, Ciaran Martin, addressing the conference. As well as the usual thanks, welcomes and niceties, Ciaran underlined the importance of cyber security in the eyes of the Government and how much of a priority it is. He told the conference that “cyber security matters for our way of life” and underscored the point by telling us that around half of all UK crime is now cyber security related.
Next, there was an interview with Robert Hannigan, director of GCHQ. Robert reflected on his time at GCHQ since he became director and the change he has seen and implemented. He spoke of the skills shortage we face over the next decade and what he is doing to address it. He also stated the biggest challenge is “getting people to understand cyber security”, which has been something of a theme of the day.
Next up was a panel discussion on a range of topics from critical national infrastructure, skills shortages to engaging SMEs. My key takeaway was that the NCSC want to engage everyone, from citizens and SMEs, right up to Government departments and big business and although there’s still a lot of work to do, they seem much clearer about how to achieve that goal than they did last year.
The conference from this point is split into streams, each covering a different aspect. I chose to attend stream one: ‘Economy and Society’, due to our specific focus on SMEs. There was a talk on CiSP, the Government’s Cyber Security Information Sharing Partnership from the NCSC, as well as talks from other speakers. This included one from Hugo Rosemont of the British Retail Consortium, who shared what they’re doing to engage SMEs in the retail sector on cyber security.
In the closing plenary session, there was a great talk from Peter Wilson, from the Home Office Research Information and Communications Unit (RICU) who talked about how to change behaviour and attitudes towards cyber security. He drew similarities with other campaigns trying to change behaviour, such as adverts in the US aimed at trying to stop people using a phone whilst driving and the shocking stop smoking adverts.
Day one of the conference has been great at the Naimuri stand. We’ve had lots of interest, great discussion and attended some really interesting talks.
If you’re attending the conference, come by stand A25 for a discussion and have the conversation illustrated live. If you’re not, follow us on twitter for updates.