Nick Thomas-Symonds Written Questions

14 Questions to Cabinet Office tabled by Nick Thomas-Symonds


Date Title Questioner
21 Dec 2017, 4:21 p.m. Public Sector: Pay Nick Thomas-Symonds

Question

To ask the Minister for the Cabinet Office, what assessment he has made of the equity for workers of the outcomes achieved by the pay review bodies that determine public sector pay.

Answer (Chris Skidmore)

The remit of the Pay Review Bodies continues to be to provide evidence based advice on pay. We will consider their recommendations when they report from Spring 2018. Our assessment of public sector pay shows that wages in the public sector are roughly equivalent to those in the private sector, and, in addition, public sector workers benefit from more generous pensions.


In line with their duties under equalities legislation, Ministers fully consider equalities impacts and implications when setting the Government’s pay policy. It is for Departments to consider the equalities impacts of their proposals on workforce strategy and pay.

19 Oct 2017, 12:20 p.m. Action Fraud: Finance Nick Thomas-Symonds

Question

To ask the Minister for the Cabinet Office, with reference to the National Cyber Security Strategy, how much funding has been allocated to the Action Fraud helpline.

Answer (Caroline Nokes)

In November 2016 the Government published a new five year National Cyber Security
Strategy 2016 - 2021, which defines our vision and ambition for the future: a UK that is
secure and resilient to cyber threats. The strategy is being implemented through the
National Cyber Security Programme (NCSP), which allocates transformative investment to
lead government departments to support delivery of the objectives set out in the strategy.

In 2017/18, we have committed £30 million of NCSP money for law enforcement and
combating cyber crime. Of this, £4,801,300 has been allocated to the City of London
Police, which includes £3,200,000 funding specifically for Action Fraud.

In 2016/17, the City of London Police received £3,153,296 NCSP funding, of which
£2,775,000 was spent on funding for Action Fraud.

The Home Office also separately funds the Action Fraud/ National Fraud Intelligence
Bureau (NFIB) capability. In 2016/17 this totalled £7,443,000. £8 million has been
allocated to this capability in 2017/18.

16 Oct 2017, 10:10 a.m. Cybercrime Nick Thomas-Symonds

Question

To ask the Minister for the Cabinet Office, when the cyber security standards set out in paragraph 5.3.11 of the National Cyber Security Strategy were implemented.

Answer (Caroline Nokes)

The Government is committed to ensuring that the commitments set out in the National Cyber
Security Strategy 2016 – 2021 are carried out and that we accurately monitor and regularly report
on progress in meeting them. The Cyber Security Standards, which define the minimum security
measures that departments must implement with regards to protecting their technology and digital
services to meet HMG Security Policy Framework obligations, are due to be issued in November
2017.

19 Sep 2017, 9:33 a.m. Cybercrime: Finance Nick Thomas-Symonds

Question

To ask the Minister for the Cabinet Office, with reference to the National Cyber Security Strategy, if he will list spending on each project supported by the Cyber Investment Fund.

Answer (Caroline Nokes)

The Government has allocated £10 million to establish a Cyber Innovation Fund which will support the UK’s national security requirements by providing innovative start-ups with financial and procurement support. This investment forms part of a suite of innovation initiatives within the National Cyber Security Strategy that will develop the cyber security sector and support the UK’s national security requirements in cyber. The mechanism to deliver funding is currently under evaluation in consultation with industry partners.

19 Sep 2017, 9:31 a.m. Cybercrime Nick Thomas-Symonds

Question

To ask the Minister for the Cabinet Office, when the security ratings for new products set out in paragraph 5.2.6 of the National Cyber Security Strategy were implemented.

Answer (Caroline Nokes)

The Department for Digital, Culture, Media and Sport is considering the need for the right incentives to be in place to build security into internet-connected products and services. The National Cyber Security Centre website provides clear information to consumers directly and via its website, for example on the use of password managers.

19 Sep 2017, 9:30 a.m. Cybercrime Nick Thomas-Symonds

Question

To ask the Minister for the Cabinet Office, how many suppliers have adopted the cyber security standards set out in paragraph 5.3.11 of the National Cyber Security Strategy.

Answer (Caroline Nokes)

On 1 October 2014, Government required all suppliers bidding for specified sensitive and personal information handling contracts to be certified against the Cyber Essentials scheme. Cyber Essentials is a government-backed scheme to help organisations protect themselves against common cyber attacks whilst demonstrating their compliance with appropriate cyber security standards.

As of August 2017 there have been 7,907 Cyber Essentials certificates issued to UK businesses. We do not specifically track the number of certified government suppliers.

20 Jul 2017, 1:16 p.m. Public Sector: Torfaen Nick Thomas-Symonds

Question

To ask the Minister for the Cabinet Office, (a) how many and (b) what proportion of people in Torfaen constituency worked in the public sector in each year for which data is available.

Answer (Chris Skidmore)

The information requested falls within the responsibility of the UK Statistics Authority. I have asked the Authority to reply.

18 Jul 2017, 2:25 p.m. National Cyber Security Centre Nick Thomas-Symonds

Question

To ask the Minister for the Cabinet Office, what plans the National Cyber Security Centre has to help universities (a) fight organised cyber-crime and (b) further prevent a cyber-attack.

Answer (Caroline Nokes)

We launched our five year National Cyber Security Strategy in 2016 to ensure that the UK has the right capability and capacity to defend our people, businesses, and assets; deter our adversaries; and develop the skills and capabilities we need across all sectors.

The NCSC regularly publishes advice and guidance for securing organisations’ networks operating in the UK, including universities, and it works closely with law enforcement partners to tackle all forms of cyber-crime.

18 Jul 2017, 2:23 p.m. National Cyber Security Centre Nick Thomas-Symonds

Question

To ask the Minister for the Cabinet Office, in what ways the National Cyber Security Centre interacts with Government Departments; and whether that Centre meets regularly with those Departments.

Answer (Caroline Nokes)

The National Cyber Security Centre (NCSC) regularly works with Government Departments and agencies to provide authoritative and coherent advice on how to protect their networks and manage the cyber risks to the data they hold. The NCSC has dedicated engagement teams which cover all economic sectors and departments. The NCSC draws on these relationships when coordinating the government’s response to national level cyber security incidents.

18 Jul 2017, 2:22 p.m. National Cyber Security Centre Nick Thomas-Symonds

Question

To ask the Minister for the Cabinet Office, if he will ensure that regular reviews of the National Cyber Security Centre take place and the outcomes of those reviews are placed in the Library.

Answer (Caroline Nokes)

The National Cyber Security Centre (NCSC) reports quarterly to the Cyber and Government Security Directorate (CGSD) of the Cabinet Office on the delivery of its objectives against the National Cyber Security Strategy (NCSS). CGSD manages the five-year National Cyber Security Programme (NCSP), and sets policy for Government.

18 Jul 2017, 2:22 p.m. National Cyber Security Centre Nick Thomas-Symonds

Question

To ask the Minister for the Cabinet Office, what plans he has to measure the effectiveness of the National Cyber Security Centre; and whether any targets have been set by his Department.

Answer (Caroline Nokes)

The National Cyber Security Centre (NCSC) reports quarterly to the Cyber and Government Security Directorate (CGSD) of the Cabinet Office on the delivery of its objectives against the National Cyber Security Strategy (NCSS). CGSD manages the five-year National Cyber Security Programme (NCSP), and sets policy for Government.

12 Jul 2017, 11:33 a.m. National Cyber Security Centre Nick Thomas-Symonds

Question

To ask the Minister for the Cabinet Office, what plans are in place for the National Cyber Security Centre to assist companies in fighting against organised cyber-crime and preventing cyber-attacks.

Answer (Caroline Nokes)

The cyber security of the UK is a top priority for Government. The Government are investing £1.9 billion in the National Cyber Security Strategy and have opened the National Cyber Security Centre who work with law enforcement and with public and private sector organisations to make the UK the safest place for everyone to live and do business online.

The NCSC provides guidance and advice on its website to a wide range of organisations including companies of all sizes. Advice is tailored to the type and size of company, with specific guidance being produced for small businesses. NCSC works closely with the National Crime Agency (NCA), Regional Organised Crime Units in awareness raising and, for example, NCA and NCSC recently published a joint assessment on the Cyber Threat to UK Business. NCSC also partners with Law Enforcement in responding to and investigating serious instances of cyber crime.

12 Jul 2017, 11:32 a.m. National Cyber Security Centre Nick Thomas-Symonds

Question

To ask the Minister for the Cabinet Office, what plans are in place for the National Cyber Security Centre to assist schools in fighting against organised cyber-crime and preventing cyber-attacks.

Answer (Caroline Nokes)

The cyber security of the UK is a top priority for Government. The NCSC provides guidance and advice on its website to a wide range of organisations including schools. NCSC technical experts provide a range of advice and guidance on the website on topics such as passwords, ransomware, malicious advertisements, phishing, and device security. This guidance and advice will continue to be developed in response to technological changes, assessment of risk and cyber security incidents.

NCSC is also building for the future, working with DCMS and DfE to grow a skills pipeline via its CyberFirst initiatives.

12 Jul 2017, 11:31 a.m. National Cyber Security Centre: Staff Nick Thomas-Symonds

Question

To ask the Minister for the Cabinet Office, how many people are employed at the National Cyber Security Centre; and what estimate he has made of changes to that number in each of the next five years.

Answer (Caroline Nokes)

The National Cyber Security Centre (NCSC) was established formally on 3 October 2016. At that time, the NCSC had a team of approximately 700 people. For reasons of National Security, we will not be providing further releases on staff numbers.