13/06/2019: B SECURE Launch Press Release

Launch of BSecure Scheme – Government will be investing €250,000: ‘A golden opportunity for businesses to educate their personnel, and evaluate, plan, and enhance their cybersecurity posture’ – Parliamentary Secretary Schembri

Parliamentary Secretary for Financial Services, Digital Economy and Innovation Silvio Schembri launched the BSecure Scheme aimed at helping the private sector to step up its game and be prepared for cyber threats.

‘As a government, we sought to invest €250,000 in this scheme which will serve as a golden opportunity for businesses to educate their personnel, evaluate, plan and enhance their Cyber Security posture’, said Parliamentary Secretary Schembri.

He explained that, in view of the ever-changing landscape where cybersecurity threats are constantly evolving, one of the main priorities is to ensure the security of our economy.

‘Beefing up our cybersecurity profile is not only our collective responsibility but also in everyone’s best interest. This will ultimately place Malta in a better position when it comes to cybersecurity preparedness. Understandably, this will not be attained through a one-time exercise, but this scheme can serve as the basis for further strengthening. Malta is now renowned for its advancements in the application of innovative technologies; our aim is to safeguard our cyberspace and, in the process, ensure that Malta will be held in high regard by other countries in the security domain’, said Parliamentary Secretary Schembri.

He explained that through this scheme would provide training sessions, conduct risk assessments, and provide consultancy in cybersecurity.

‘Local businesses will be receiving consultancy and risk assessments thus such commonality and equivalency in the methodology will be beneficial for Malta. I thank MITA, Chamber of Commerce and Acronis for being part of this much-anticipated scheme.

Tony Sultana, MITA’s Executive Chairman, said that everyone is aware of the impact cybersecurity incidents can have on today’s digitally dependent economies especially on businesses whose online and digital presence is fundamental for their successful operation.

‘In view of this global new scenario, over these last years, MITA has embarked on an ambitious program to protect the ICT infrastructure of the government, by training our human capital, invest in specialized security tools and re-strengthen our policies and processes.

We are now extending the cyber security awareness to the private sector. Through the B SECURE Scheme launched today, the private industry can apply for assistance to assess the posture of its digital assets against the latest cybersecurity threats and further train its workforce, giving them the possibility to earn certifications recognized worldwide in the cyber security domain. We are committed to enhancing on a national level a robust cybersecurity nation’, said Tony Sultana

Vice President for Acronis Cloud Europe & Middle East Bertil Brendeke explained that the volume and sophistication of ransomware attacks have risen steadily over the past few years, becoming one of the most pervasive and expensive online criminal threats in history. The quick detection and termination of a ransomware attack are important.

‘The faster the threat is shut down, the less time it has to destroy files by encrypting them. Restoring any ransomware-encrypted files is a useful technique, but its effectiveness depends on how frequently you perform backups. Organized criminal gangs have mimicked the business and technology models of the legitimate software-as-a-service industry, making it increasingly easy for low-skilled operators to get into the business of distributing and profiting from ransomware; and that is why awareness on those tactics and training of all employees is key’, said Brendeke.

“No business is too small to be at risk of a cybersecurity attack”, said Hugh Arrigo, Vice President of the Malta Chamber. Arrigo noted how each year global media were reporting increases in cyber- attacks around the world, and how Maltese companies were not immune to these hacks. “The B Secure Scheme will provide the private industry with the necessary assistance to leverage its cybersecurity posture.”

Further information can be found on www.cybersecurity.gov.mt/bsecure