Why do we need to focus on improving UK cyber security in the wake of Brexit?

Why do we need to focus on improving UK cyber security in the wake of Brexit?
Why do we need to focus on improving UK cyber security in the wake of Brexit?
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In 2017, cyber-attacks like mandate alone cost UK businesses £32.2 million. Cyber security is laced with various key social, political and economic challenges of the 21st century. The attack on UK health services NHS last year signifies that there is a strong need to focus on improving cyber defence of the country. With Brexit in view, it is imperative to understand its impacts on UK’s cyber security.

This article series surveyed and highlighted the current statistics of cybercrime in the UK. Moreover, the UK government efforts to reduce the cybercrime were also highlighted in this paper. It also contained imperative suggestions to prevent cybercrime. After Brexit, the cyber defence military relations of the UK will remain the same with Five Eyes and NATO. But, the cyber security industry could be affected by Brexit in various ways. Moreover, Brexit could also affect the governments cyber laws and policies as the UK will lose its position as a Cyber Law making country. This will be an adverse effect on UK cyber security as the UK will not be able to make laws but will have to abide by them which are made by the European Union. In the midst of Brexit negotiations, the UK and EU should not forget their mutual interest and focus on maintaining an efficient and effective cybersecurity system, as their nations stability relies on it.


The predominance of the sophisticated cyber-attacks is increasing exponentially across the globe. According to the Cyber Security Breaches Survey (CSBS) 2018 UK, 72% of large businesses noticed at least one security attack in the last 12 months. The average cost of these cyber attacks in large businesses was £9260 last year [1]. These figures alone showed that such attacks could not only destroy business industry but could also hurt government and other private institutes in UK. Therefore, it was imperative to keep an eye on cyber attacks figures and trends. So that appropriate preventive measures could be taken to avoid such attacks.

Cyber attack is an attack on organisations, employees and consumers which could access or destroy sensitive data or extort money. This could not only destroy businesses but also peoples personal and financial lives. Cyber Security is a state or process of preventing and recovering devices, networks and program from such cyber attacks. A strong and efficient cyber security system should have multiple layers of protection spread across devices, networks and programs. Such cyber security systems could be made more efficient by people who employ smart cyber defence choices [2].

As the debate on the UK leaving the European Union rages endlessly on, it looks as if one imperative question is being lost beneath all the hubbub is that what will be the impact on cyber security of UK after Brexit? Brexit has also brought up a dilemma of whether UK should remain in Digital Single Market of European Union or not. Although due to the current uncertainty about the future of Brexit, it seems like a fools errand to ponder about the future of cyber security, it would be extremely useful for UK consumers to analyse the risks and trends of cyber attacks and security in the wake of Brexit [3].

In today’s cyber world, almost every country is busy making apparatuses for defensive and offensive purposes including espionage and sabotage. The cyberspace is mostly dominated by military doctrine like for some countries national security depends on their cyber security. In a cy- berspace, capabilities of any country could be determined by its cyber attacks, cyber dependencies and cyber defence [4]. Therefore, it is imperative that UK should analyse and update its cyber security and stay vigilant for the aftermath of Brexit.

Although Brexit will not impact UK’s cyber security relationship with NATO and Five Eyes. It will have an adverse impact on workforce of UK’s cyber security industry. Due to the uncertainty of Brexit, the impact on UK’s cyber law like GDPR implementation is unclear. But, Brexit will be an adverse effect on UK’s cyber crime agencies framework as UK will definitely not be able to make or change cyber laws. Instead UK will have to abide by laws made by Europol due to maintained equivalency between UK and EU data protection frameworks. It is not in UK’s interest or the EU to terminate their long term cyber security partnership. Both sides should keep mutual benefit in mind during the negotiations of engagement and information sharing matters. The focus on mutual interest should not be deviated by political horse-trading or ideological intolerance. The Cyber security of UK and EU neighbour countries is too important to be a Brexit’s causality.

The UK’s basic goal should be to protect and promote national interest. For this taking, a long term strategic path for cyber security is imperative. The uncertainty of Brexit should be an opportunity for UK to test, alter and plan its cyber security ambitions for the future.

Let us know If you have any questions or suggestions about Brexit impact on Cyber Security in UK. Share your thoughts in the comments section!

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Muntaha Saleem
She is an Editor-in-Chief . She is a Telecom engineer and a blogger. She loves to blog about latest technology news and products.

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