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Legislation needed to underpin cyber security capabilities - Darren O’Rourke TD and Ruairí Ó Murchú TD

26 May, 2021 - by Darren O Rourke TD, Ruairí Ó Murchú TD

Sinn Féin TDs Darren O’Rourke and Ruairí Ó Murchú have called for the state’s cyber security apparatus to be established on a statutory footing and for the appropriate funding and resourcing to be allocated to it.

Darren O’Rourke TD said:

“The ransomware attack on the HSE has had a devastating impact on the provision of health services across Ireland.

“This despicable attack highlights the serious vulnerabilities in some of the state’s IT systems. Changes must be introduced to help prevent a similar attack occurring again.

“In recent days, before the Oireachtas Communications Committee, one expert witness after another highlighted the extent to which they believed the state’s cyber security systems are under-resourced. This is very concerning.

“From the comments of expert witnesses, though, it is clear that a much wider focus on the structure, governance, funding and resourcing of cyber security is now needed. The ongoing review of the NCSC will help inform this.

“It is essential we boost protections now to help protect against further cyber-attacks."

Ruairí Ó Murchú TD said:

“We heard evidence at the Oireachtas Committee today that the National Cyber Security Centre is not on a statutory footing. This needs to be addressed immediately.

“New legislation is needed to underpin the state’s cyber security capabilities.

“A vulnerability assessment of other vital IT systems, such as the electricity grid and banking services, should also be undertaken as a priority, to identify any weaknesses that might exist in these essential areas.”

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