Cyber security boost to the NHS as NHS Digital joins forces with IBM

NHS Digital must be quoted as the source of this information.

NHS Digital has entered into a three-year strategic partnership with IBM to provide a range of new and improved services to health and care organisations. These services will enhance data security and cyber security response and provide additional defence against increasingly complex, evolving threats.

The additional services will expand NHS Digital’s existing Cyber Security Operations Centre (CSOC)3 and enhance NHS Digital’s current capability to monitor, detect and respond to a variety of security risks and threats across the NHS, and offer expert advice and guidance.

The CSOC expands on the existing cyber security services provided by NHS Digital and will include:

  • Enhanced services, such as vulnerability scanning and malware analysis, allowing NHS Digital to offer tailored and specialist advice to individual NHS organisations
  • Enhancement of NHS Digitals current monitoring capability enabling the analyses of data from multiple sources to detect threats across NHS Digital’s national systems and services
  • Access to IBM’s X-Force repository of threat intelligence to provide insight, guidance, and advice so health and care organisations can take appropriate action to prepare for, or mitigate against, identified risks and threats.4
  • Security monitoring pilots across selected NHS organisations, to test a range of security technologies and identify appropriate solutions that could be rolled out across the NHS estate
  • An innovation service which will allow NHS Digital to quickly access new tools technologies and expertise to address new threats as they emerge and to allow it to adapt services to meet the changing needs of the health and care sector.

Dan Taylor, Programme Director, Data Security Centre at NHS Digital, said:

“This partnership will enhance our existing Cyber Security Operations Centre which is delivered from NHS Digital’s Data Security Centre. It will give us, during times of increased need, the ability to draw on a pool of dedicated professionals from IBM.

“It will build on our existing ability to proactively monitor for security threats, risks, and emerging vulnerabilities, while supporting the development of new services for the future and enabling us to better support the existing needs of local organisations. This will ensure that we can evolve our security capability in line with the evolving cyber threat landscape.

“This partnership will allow us to share knowledge and skills from the information security industry, whilst continuing to develop our internal expertise and supporting health and care organisations to build their own cyber resilience.

“This partnership will strengthen how we help to keep patient information and services safe and secure, enabling NHS staff and patients to have confidence in the security of our system.”

Rob Sedman, Director of Security, IBM UK and Ireland said:

“IBM is excited to partner with NHS Digital and bring enhanced detection and incident response co-ordination capabilities to its Data Security Centre”.

ENDS

Notes to editors

  1. NHS Digital is the national information and technology provider for the health and care system.  Our team of information analysis, technology and project management experts create, deliver and manage the crucial digital systems, services, products and standards upon which health and care professionals and citizens depend.  Our vision is to harness the power of information and technology to make health and care better. The Health and Social Care Information Centre is a non-departmental body created by statute, also known as NHS Digital. We provide ‘Information and Technology for better health and care’. Find out more about our role and remit at www.digital.nhs.uk
  2. IBM Security offers one of the most advanced and integrated portfolios of enterprise security products and services. The portfolio, supported by world-renowned IBM X-Force® research, enables organisations to effectively manage risk and defend against emerging threats. IBM operates one of the world's broadest security research, development and delivery organisations, monitors 35 billion security events per day in more than 130 countries, and has been granted more than 8,000 security patents worldwide. For more information, please see www.ibm.com/security, follow @IBMSecurity on Twitter or visit the IBM Security blog www.securityintelligence.com
  3. NHS Digital’s Cyber Security Operations Centre monitors the national Transition Network and Health and Social Care Network (HSCN) providing protection and monitoring services for known cyber threats and vulnerabilities and supports NHS organisations to mitigate against them. Services also include incident response support for NHS organisations, ranging from remote advice to rapid on-site deployment of a specialist team of cyber experts in the case of a significant cyber security incident
  4. IBM’s X Force captures threat intelligence from a range of sources to broaden NHS's visibility into potential threats
  5. For media enquiries please contact media@nhsdigital.nhs.net or telephone 0300 30 33 888.