Simon Newman

Cyber-attacks are one of the biggest threats faced by businesses. Large companies should already have in place control measures to survive cyber security breaches and recover quickly from their impact. Small size companies, however, don’t have such privilege, leaving them particularly vulnerable. According to Verizon Data Breach Investigation Report, 58% of cyber-attack victims are small businesses and a single breach can cost approx. 3 million dollars. This could be catastrophic for many small businesses and may result in the failure of an organization. To minimize the impact evolving cyber threats pose to small businesses, the Police Digital Security Centre was established to raise awareness among the business community about the importance of understanding how they might be at risk to a cyber-attack or breach.

Below are highlights of the interview conducted between Insights Success and PDSC:

What led to an inception of the company?

In 2015, the Mayor’s Office for Policing and Crime (MOPAC) recognized that cybercrime presented a significant threat to London’s small business community. While many larger organizations had the skills and capability to protect themselves against the most common types of cybercrime, small and medium sized enterprises

(SMEs) were often left behind. In response to this threat, MOPAC established the London Digital Security Centre (LDSC). In 2018, LDSC became part of Police Crime Prevention Initiatives (PCPI), a not-for-profit, police-owned company and given a broader remit. It was also renamed as the Police Digital Security Centre (PDSC).

Could you throw some light on your mission and vision statement?

PDSC has a simple vision – to reduce the vulnerability of SMEs to cybercrime and fraud. It does this through education and awareness, focusing on helping SMEs make small changes that can prevent the overwhelming majority of cybercrime.

Describe your company and its cutting-edge (domain of the respective project) solutions which address all the needs of your customers.

PDSCs work is focused around three core activities. Our award-winning community outreach program brings cyber security to the high street. Working alongside uniform police officers, we visit business owners at their place of work to provide practical advice about cyber security. We also offer two certification schemes which we have developed in collaboration with the British Standards Institution. The first of these schemes is an online assessment tool aimed at helping SMEs take the first steps on their cyber security journey. The second scheme is aimed at companies who offer cyber security products, services or consultancy to SMEs.

Give a detailed description of the featured person’s influence over the company and the industry.

Simon is responsible for setting and managing the delivery of PDSCs strategy in partnership with Government, academia and industry. As Head of Cyber and Business Services for PDSCs parent organization, Simon is also responsible for ensuring PDSCs core messages are embedded into other crime prevention initiatives across policing.

How are you contributing in the evolution of the cyber security industry?

Our role is two-fold. Firstly, we support the Government’s overarching Cyber Security Strategy by helping SMEs improve their security posture. Secondly, we identify and promote innovative cyber security companies whose products, services or consultancy address known risks affecting SMEs.

What are your company’s future aspirations? What strategies are you undertaking to achieve those goals?

Our main aspiration is to deliver a step change in the way SMEs address the threats posed by cybercrime so that they are better protected against the most common types of crime. Education and Awareness is at the heart of this strategy.

Give us a few testimonials of your clients that accurately highlight your company’s position in the market.

“We’re delighted to be working with the PDSC in order to help organizations improve their digital security and are committed to supporting organizations with this challenge. Through awareness, training, testing and other information security-minded practices, we help organizations to capture the opportunities that digital business can bring, minimize their risk and enhance resilience.” -British Standards Institution (BSI)

“The Police Digital Security Innovator certification process through PDSC and BSI has given us that level of scrutiny, trust and credibility in the UK and Global markets we need in order to offer our solutions to the public and businesses alike. Online Child Safety can never be taken too seriously, and we aim to continue to improve and offer even better online protection as technology evolves. We are extremely proud to receive such an accolade.”– Child Safe VPN Ltd

 “As an established, highly qualified provider of Information Security services and skills our Digital Security Provider status, underpins our credential and we look forward to engaging with the PDSC to help organizations to protect themselves in a proactive way, avoid the risks associated with cyber-attacks and grow their businesses confidently, assured that data and information is secured using best practice.”– Marathon Information Technology

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