UK government launches the IT Security Awareness for Everyone website

Feb 25, 2005

ITsafe, a new initiative to protect home computer users and micro businesses from viruses and other threats online, was launched on Wednesday 23 February by the UK Government. The IT Security Awareness for Everyone website – www.itsafe.gov.uk – offers free advice as well as virus and threat alerts allowing computer users to surf the net and send and receive emails more safely.

The service, a Home Office funded initiative, uses information provided by the National Infrastructure Security Co-ordination Centre (NISCC) - the Government’s centre for electronic defence. It aims to reassure users by advising them on how best to protect their
personal and business data.

Home Office Minister Hazel Blears said: “There is a clear need for easy-to-understand and simple independent advice for non-technically minded people who use computers either at home or at work. The purpose of this new Government service is to ensure computer users are aware of the risks involved and how to deal with them easily and effectively without causing alarm.

“Use of the Internet in homes and small businesses across the country has increased dramatically. Government statistics have shown that more than half of all households own a home computer and in 2004 it was estimated that almost 13 million of these were able to access the net. Many of us use the web and send emails every day without a second thought but there are risks and dangers we should be aware of.

“Every day more and more viruses make their way on to the Internet and into people’s home computers, arriving with little or no warning with the potential to corrupt, wipe out or steal valuable data. “Defending yourself against this type of threat is where ITsafe comes in. Signing up to this service will give users an extra level of defence in two key ways; by providing general advice on IT security and issuing official alerts if and when it is felt there is a serious enough threat from a particular virus or other form of threat.”

To sign up users can simply visit the website where they will be asked to provide their email address. For those who prefer, a text message service to a mobile phone is also
available. Alerts will consist of an email or text outlining specific threats and what damage they can do. Users will then be directed to clear, step-by-step advice on how to respond and therefore maximise the security of their computers, software and personal or business data.

Roger Cumming, Director of NISCC, said: “In our work we deal with threats to the Critical National Infrastructure – those computer systems that affect every aspect of our lives, from the banking system to the health service. “ITsafe will take our technical expertise and use it to help home users understand the risks and keep their computer systems, mobile phones and a range of related consumer electronic items, safe.”

Sir David Omand, Security & Intelligence Coordinator in the Cabinet Office, said: "The UK is an information society. Three quarters of public services are now online, e-commerce is thriving and around 13 million homes now have internet access. This brings significant social and economic benefits to thenation but, as with everything in life, there are also some associated risks which must be addressed.”

“It is essential that all IT users take precautions to protect themselves when they are online. ITsafe will alert home computer users about significant threats to their systems and give them advice and information to help them to go online safely and with confidence".

Explore further: Google searches hold key to future market crashes

add to favorites email to friend print save as pdf

Related Stories

JIBO robot could become part of the family

Jul 17, 2014

JIBO, measuring at about 11 inches tall and weighing approximately 6 pounds, is a robotic device designed for people to use as a companion and helper at home. , The team behind JIBO aims to bring it to market ...

Soundhawk brings out system for smarter listening

Jun 26, 2014

On Tuesday, Cupertino, California-based Soundhawk announced they were unveiling their Smart Listening System and taking pre-orders. The set allows the user to make the most of sounds in everyday living, letting ...

Recommended for you

Google searches hold key to future market crashes

8 hours ago

A team of researchers from Warwick Business School and Boston University have developed a method to automatically identify topics that people search for on Google before subsequent stock market falls.

Lenovo's smart glasses prototype has battery at neck

10 hours ago

China's PC giant Lenovo last week offered a peek at its Google Glass-competing smart glass prototype, further details of which are to be announced in October. Lenovo's glasses prototype is not an extreme ...

Amazon launches 3D printing store

13 hours ago

Amazon announced Monday the launch of an online store for 3D printed items to allow consumers to customize and personalize items like earrings, pendants, dolls and other objects.

User comments : 0