The National Cyber Security Centre and the FBI will be among key global organisations to highlight the growing threat of cybercrime during CyberScotland Week, which kicks off at the end of the month.

David J Scott, deputy assistant director, FBI Cyber Division, Federal Bureau of Investigation, will join expert speakers as international keynote for the Cyber Security 2023 conference, which is part of the week’s programme of events.

Lindy Cameron, chief executive of the National Cyber Security Centre, will also join a panel of experts at Strathclyde University’s Technology & Innovation Centre on Monday, 27 February.

The NCSC reported that it had stopped 2.1 million malicious cyber attacks in 2022, meaning that it is more important than ever that awareness around cybercrime is high.

In parallel, the UK government’s most recent Cyber Breaches Survey found that 39 per cent of UK businesses identified a cyber attack – though noted less cyber mature organisations may not be reporting everything. As a result, the true number of organisations who have faced an attack is likely higher.

To increase awareness of cyber threats nationally, the CyberScotland Partnership is calling on businesses and individuals across Scotland to get involved with the fifth annual CyberScotland Week

The partnership, which is backed by Scottish Government and includes organisations such as Police Scotland and the Scottish Business Resilience Centre, is encouraging as many organisations, charities and community groups to help spread awareness of cybersecurity incidents by hosting an event during CyberScotland Week, taking place from 27th February – 5th March.  

For those without cyber experts, the CyberScotland Partnership is offering specialist guest speakers to come and talk free at events– which can take place online or in person.  

Jude McCorry, chair of the CyberScotland Partnership, said: “What started five years ago as a week of events, has grown into a month of efforts with various fringe events now taking place, each with the goal of increasing cyber awareness and resilience. It’s brilliant to see the spread of face-to-face events this year: from Alloa to Africa where a Ghanian high school’s cybersecurity club has asked to link in with our activities. 

“Anyone interested in a particular security topic, but lacking the expertise to lead an event themselves, should get in touch. We have a bank of brilliant speakers we can connect you to, to lead the conversation at your event about a topic of your choice.” 

Around 40 events have been confirmed so far for the 2023 event with topics ranging from managing your digital footprint to maximising your relationship with a cyber assurance partner and understanding threats aimed at charities. Confirmed events include:  

·       Public Sector Cyber Security Scotland 2023 in Edinburgh, for public sector cyber security professionals  

·       Cyber Security 2023 Conference in Glasgow, looking at government policy around digital security  

·       OT & IT Cyber Summit in Aberdeen, for those working in the critical infrastructure sector  

Jude added: “Each of us – regardless of age, employment status, or technical expertise – must be cyber conscious in today’s digital world. At the same time, we know that not everyone is able to host an event during one specific week, so we welcome fringe events so that more people can get involved in raising awareness of the impact of cyber related issues at a time that is convenient for them.” 

Those looking to get involved and be a part of this year’s programme should look at events relating to improving knowledge and awareness of cyber security; showcasing the incredible work and innovations being done in the sector; and promoting skills development and careers in cyber. 

For more information, host an event, or request a speaker, visit the CyberScotland Week website.