Government launches 3 new calls for views at CyberUK24

The Department for Science, Innovation and Technology is consulting on measures to encourage secure by design technology, improve supply chain security and develop the cyber workforce.

During the opening plenary of day two at the UK government’s flagship cyber security event, Technology Minister Saqib Bhatti announced two new government consultations which will further develop government’s thinking around ensuring AI models and software are Secure by Design.

The first is a call for views on a draft software vendor code of practice, which is designed to prevent common mistakes in software development and distribution and improve information sharing between software vendors and their customers. The ambition of this voluntary code is to reduce the likelihood and impact of software supply chain attacks and other incidents that continue to affect organisations across the economy, and government is seeking feedback on its proposed design as well as how it should be implemented.

The second, which is closely aligned with the software vendor code of practice, is a call for views on the cyber security of AI which includes a proposal for a voluntary code of practice which will form a new global standard. This code is based upon the NCSC’s guidelines for secure AI system development and includes practical steps for stakeholders across the AI supply chain, particularly developers and system operators, to protect end users. 

The Minister also announced that government is taking action on cyber skills to help develop the cyber workforce. This includes launching a call for views seeking feedback on the future direction of the successful CyberFirst programme, including on how it can be scaled to inspire future talent – potentially through the creation of a new alternatively-led organisation to take over delivery of the programme – and the continuing role of government to support scaled and sustained delivery.

In a further nod to the importance of the cyber skills pipeline the Minister also noted in his speech at CyberUK that the government is working with the UK Cyber Security Council to drive up professional standards in the cyber profession. Indeed, a statement, supported by industry through the Cyber Growth Partnership, has been published outlining the commitments that government, regulators and industry are making to embed professional standards in cyber security. 

All three calls for views are open until Friday 9th August. techUK welcomes the opportunity to respond to all three consultations and we will shortly advise members on opportunities to engage on these important topics.


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