The UK Parliament has initiated an inquiry aimed at improving the cybersecurity of critical infrastructure as concerns grow over vulnerabilities in internet-connected systems that underpin sectors like power delivery and healthcare. The Science and Technology Committee has called upon experts to provide insights as the United Kingdom stands among the most targeted countries for cyberattacks worldwide, following closely behind the United States and Ukraine.
Notably, Ukraine has dealt with multiple cyberattacks on its power grid, underscoring the severity of the issue. The cybersecurity of the UK’s critical infrastructure is a key concern in the government’s 2022 national cyber strategy and its broader plan for a cyber-resilient Great Britain by 2030. Recent incidents, including a breach of voter data at the UK Electoral Commission and the 2017 WannaCry attack on the National Healthcare Service, emphasize the urgency of addressing these vulnerabilities.
Concerns have arisen due to the majority of the UK’s critical infrastructure being in private corporate hands, potentially leading to conflicting priorities between the government and private operators in terms of cybersecurity strategies and investments. The call for evidence, open until November 10, will focus on the nature and types of cyberattacks affecting critical infrastructure in sectors such as communication, energy, government, and finance.
Additionally, the committee is seeking assessments of the effectiveness of the National Cyber Security Centre and other government agencies, along with insights into the role of emerging technologies in enhancing cyber resilience.