The storm before the calm?

By Alison Stone (Third Sector Cyber Resilience Coordinator, Scottish Business Resilience Centre) on 5th Feb 2021

All this week, I have been nagging myself, and promising my colleague and partner in Cyber Scotland Week crime Siobhan Mercer, that I would write a blog on all the brilliant stuff planned… BUT this brilliant stuff doesn’t plan itself and it has been a busy week getting our cyber ducks in a row.

I am delighted with the results though – there is a full week of fantastic events for the voluntary sector – some by the team here at SCVO, plus a wonderful series of events by our friends at Lead Scotland and numerous adhoc events by other partners.

All are worthy of note but it is worth highlighting a couple, just to whet your appetite. Firstly, from the SCVO stable…
Your digital footprint – what does the internet know about you? This joint presentation, by online harms expert Jess McBeath and ethical hacker Abdullah Khan, provides an insight into what can be done with the information we share online about ourselves. We gave Abdullah the name of a third sector “celebrity” and he will unveil the details he discovered when he used “OSINT” or open-source intelligence gathering. Will our celebrity be shocked and alarmed? No spoilers, but it should be a fantastic session.

Next up is the oddly named Avoiding scammers and schemers session. We are delighted to welcome Ian Murphy from CyberOff to join us for this fun and informative delve into scams. Ian is the face and voice behind some of cybers’ most engaging and entertaining education videos – they are interesting, humorous, catchy and sometimes less than PG in their content. Ian will be sharing his thoughts on why we fall for online scams, in his own unique manner, whilst Mike Smith of Police Scotland and I will be trying to reign him in and provide some scam spotting advice and signposting.

It is also worth blocking out a space in your diary for the OSCR-hosted event Crisis recovery: lessons learned for charities. This is a brilliant double-headed session with Martin Tyson, Head of Compliance and Regulation at OSCR, the Scottish Charity Regulator and Jim Preen at Yudu Sentinel. Loosely framed around the notifiable event reported by the Institute of Statecraft, which OSCR investigated in 2019, this session provides some excellent advice about how to manage incidents effectively and the benefits of having a structured plan and well thought out “crisis communications” well in advance. Compelling watching and helpful to boot!

It is not just educational webinars that are happening during Cyber Scotland Week – there are many other great initiatives too. The fabulous folk at SightScotland have produced the excellent guidance prepared by Get Safe Online into a braille format. Our friends at the Scottish Sports Association are producing safety videos to be shared with Governing Bodies of sport and their clubs. The piece de resistance is the launch on Monday 22nd February of the Cyber Scotland Partnership and Portal. The partnership is a collaboration of 10 organisations joining together to support one another and the cyber work we do (SCVO is a proud representative of the third sector). The portal will be the shop window to all cyber services going forward and is an exciting development for us all.

This blog has only just scraped the surface of the brilliant stuff available and, with only 17 more sleeps ‘til CSW, I have loads more to share with you. Full details of these and all the other events can be accessed via the Cyber Scotland Week website. Do join the party and book up soon.

Same time next week for another blog? Watch this space!