NATO member governments have been preparing and responding for months to cyber attacks launched directly by the Russian military and its virtual collaborators.
The bulk of cyber defence systems are focused on financial institutions, power plants, communication systems and other vital infrastructures. These cyber defence systems are supported by law enforcement and military personnel, as well as a broad community of companies with expertise in different aspects of cybersecurity, such as hackers, computer scientists, specialist lawyers, and insurers.
Although this high level of activation is reassuring, it may be bad news for local authorities, which might be left vulnerable to cybercrime. In essence, most local authorities will not be able to rely on the usual support to defend themselves against cyber attacks and are likely to be virtually on their own for some time to come.
Moreover, municipalities that are attacked may have trouble recording what they have lost and it is doubtful that cybercrime insurers will be able to respond quickly to requests from all insured local governments. The best strategy now is to rapidly increase all prevention mechanisms and protocols.
So, which cybersecurity measures should councils prioritise?