Customers face threats from cyber criminals, scammers, fraudsters and online predators. We work behind the scenes to protect them, help them take steps to manage these risks themselves and offer an extra helping hand to people who need it, like children and the elderly.
We’re working hard to help our customers stay safe online. We start by protecting our own business from the ever-present threat of cyber-attacks like data theft, fraud, infrastructure damage or service interruption – all of which could affect our customers and harm our reputation.
The large amounts of personal data we hold – including call logs, bank and credit card details – makes us a tempting target for cyber criminals. The cyber threat to UK business 2017-2018 Report issued by the NCSC stated “the last year has seen no deceleration in the tempo and volume of cyber incidents, as attackers devise new ways to harm businesses and citizens around the globe”. We have seen the capability, sophistication and speed of innovation from the attackers also increase. In the 2017 calendar year, we saw around 250,000 cyber-attacks directed towards us.
Our strengthened automated defences were able to repel the vast majority of these attacks. Looking at the most significant incidents, the number needing manual intervention dropped by 33%. The 1.8% that got past our first line of layered defences were stopped by our highly-trained security teams.
We’re on constant alert and we share information about known threats with other companies and the UK Government through partnerships such as BT’s own Malware Information Sharing Platform, which we launched earlier this year. Last year, we became the first communications service provider to sign an intelligence-sharing agreement with Interpol, providing information about cyber criminals, cyber-attacks and malicious domain names to support the global fight against cyber-crime. This year we have strengthened our partnership with Europol through a joint Memorandum of Understanding on intelligence sharing.
We protect customers through our products and services such BT Web Protect, BT Virus Protect, PlusNet Protect and True Key help people detect viruses and choose strong passwords. We also provide free BT and PlusNet Call Protect to help prevent nuisance calls and allow customers to add numbers to a personal blacklist.
Recent BT cyber-security announcements and responses to public consultations:
- BT and INTERPOL unite to fight cyber-crime (October 2017)
- BT’s response to the Joint Committee on the National Security Strategy’s call for evidence for its inquiry into ‘Cyber security: Critical National Infrastructure’ (January 2018)