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Data's perfect storm

MBM Commercial recently hosted a data protection seminar in conjunction with the Cyber Academy at Edinburgh Napier University. The seminar, entitled ‘A Perfect Storm: dealing with data security in a changing legal landscape’, looked at some of the key issues affecting data security in the context of GDPR, the rise in use of mobile and cloud technology, and the corresponding growth in incidents of ransomware and other malicious security issues. The event was particularly timely given the focus of recent news headlines about the WannaCry ransomware attack which affected the NHS amongst others. 

I am delighted to report that the seminar was a great success, with over 70 attendees – due in no small part to the events exceptional speakers: Detective Inspector Eamonn Keane of Police Scotland, Stephen Hampton (CTO of Hutchinson Networks), our very own Andy Harris (who heads up our IP & Commercial Contracts team) and key-note speaker Professor Bill Buchanan. 

Eamonn Keane kicked things off with a riveting talk on the role of law enforcement in the current fight against cyber-crime, and the changing landscape of organised crime in the digital age. Throughout his engaging presentation, he emphasised the need for co-operation across the industry to help protect individuals and prevent digital crime.

He was followed by MBM Commercial’s Andy Harris, who provided an excellent summary of the GDPR and the key consequences for SME businesses. It was clear from the reaction in the room that GDPR is likely to impact almost every data driven business when it comes into force on 25 May 2018, and Andy succinctly highlighted some of the preparatory steps that organisations should be taking now.

After the break, Stephen Hampton deftly outlined some of the principal changes in the way digital solutions are being delivered, which he collectively referred to as the ‘Third Platform’. Stephen discussed some of the main challenges that the Third Platform presents to traditional approaches to network security, as well as some of the new approaches that can be taken to counter these.

Professor Bill Buchanan rounded off the seminar with an expert and very engaging look at cyber security risks. His take on ‘ransomware as a service’ was particularly unique and his fascinating real-time ransomware demonstration helped to illustrate the very real threat of these issues. I suspect I speak for the majority of attendees when I say that I was particularly looking forward to hearing from Professor Bill Buchanan, and his presentation was undoubtedly a highlight (possibly only topped by Andy’s profuse assurances that there would be no fire alarm test during the seminar….I’ll leave you to draw your own conclusions as to what happened there).

All in all, a really fantastic event and I look forward to MBM Commercial’s next project with the Cyber Academy at Edinburgh Napier University. For those who missed the seminar, you can find a link to the presentations at the following link together with the slides and MBM Commercial’s note on the key changes under the GDPR – and we hope to see you at the next event!

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