Government calls in Blue Rubicon to help fight cyber crime

The Government is on the verge of a major comms initiative to combat the £27bn scourge of cyber crime.

Cyber security: the govt steps up comms efforts
Cyber security: the govt steps up comms efforts

The Home Office has called in Blue Rubicon for what PRWeek understands is early-stage planning around a major cyber-security campaign.

It is believed the campaign will educate businesses and individuals on how to avoid becoming victims of cyber crime.

News of the appointment follows a Government survey that revealed cyber crime costs the UK economy between £18bn and £27bn annually.

Fears over hacking led to BAE Systems and Vodafone unveiling a five-year deal last month to work together to counter cyber crime.

They also prompted the Cabinet Office’s parliamentary secretary Chloe Smith to call for government, industry and academia to ‘work together’ in ‘cracking the problem’.

Blue Rubicon will work on strategy with the Home Office’s National Fraud Authority for the planned campaign, which is also understood to involve the Cabinet Office.

Its month-long brief follows the publication of the Government’s UK Cyber Security Strategy in 2011.

This committed £650m of extra funding to an overarching national cyber security programme.

It is believed the agency will also provide insight into which audiences should be targeted, although a focus on businesses and the public is expected.

A well-placed PR source pointed to recent efforts by the Government to drive much of its own day-to-day interaction with the public online as upping the ante.

‘There is great awareness of the threat of cyber crime on individuals and, more widely, industrial espionage. But as the Government moves online when it comes to things like collecting pensions, there is an increased need to raise awareness of the issue.’

A National Fraud Authority spokesperson said: ‘The National Fraud Authority is working with Blue Rubicon on a short-term project for the national cyber-security programme.’

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