Politicians at Holyrood are to receive a cybersecurity ‘briefing’ next month following a series of online incidents including honeytraps and hacking.

Members of the Scottish Parliament will get their first briefing on May 22 after the Liberal Democrats raised fears that politicians are being potentially targeted by hostile nations.

The briefing will cover the use of devices, both personal and parliamentary, as well as personal security.

Alex Cole-Hamilton, party leader, said: “Recently we have seen the attempted hacking of MPs’ emails, a hack on the Electoral Commission and a honeytrap scandal in Westminster.

“Some of these incidents may originate with hostile foreign nations, others will be the work of more prosaic scammers.

“MSPs are privy to an awful lot of confidential and personal information and by dint of our positions may be attractive targets for malign actors. It’s essential that every member is now offered formal training on how to recognise the work of hackers and scammers and the risks we may face.”

At Westminster, SNP MP Stewart McDonald was among elected members told last month that they had been targeted by China in a string of cyberattacks on politicians and peers.

The Electoral Commission itself fell victim to a data breach in August 2021, but the compromise wasn’t detected until October 2022.

Chinese hackers were blamed for the hack by the UK government as fears were raised that 40 million voter records may have been accessed or copied.

More recently, a strange series of anonymous texts were sent to MPs and Westminster aides, in what was thought to be a ‘honeytrap’ or romance scam to lure victims.

William Wragg, the Tory MP, resigned the Conservative whip at Westminster this month after admitting to handing out colleagues’ phone numbers when he fell prey to a “spear-phishing” attack.

Cole-Hamilton added: “I have asked parliamentary authorities to set up these briefings in order to help myself and my colleagues navigate the traps and the risks.

“I have warned before that we may already be in the early days of a new Cold War. In those circumstances, ratcheting up our levels of care and caution is only sensible.”

John Pullinger, the Electoral Commission’s chair, said: “The cyberattack has not had an impact on the security of UK elections. The UK’s democratic processes and systems are widely dispersed and their resilience has been strengthened since the attack. Voters have, and should continue to have, high trust in the process of voting.

“The data accessed when this attack took place does not impact how people register, vote, or participate in democratic processes. It has no impact on the management of the electoral registers or on the running of elections.”