What is cyber security?

Cyber security is how we protect the electronic devices and online services we use every day. This includes devices like smartphones, laptops, tablets and computers. It also includes online services we use at home and at work.

Because of how often we use these services and devices, they hold a lot of data about us. This includes personal and sensitive data. Organisations also hold data about us.

  • Banks and financial service businesses have information about their clients.
  • Small businesses have information about their customers.
  • Charities have information about who is giving them money.

Whether the data is held by a company, a charity, or your own device: all this data is valuable to cyber criminals. They may want to steal, damage, or get access to to your data for financial gain. When they do, it’s referred to as a cyber attack.

But we can make it harder for criminals: we can protect our devices and the services they use. This is the core of cyber security.

Beginning section Why is cyber security important for Jersey?

Why is cyber security important for Jersey?

Although Jersey is small, cyber security is incredibly important for us. This is because we are unusual in several ways.

Despite being physically small, the Island manages its own critical infrastructure, including energy, water and transport.

Jersey is also home to a lot of financial and professional services companies. Each of these companies has access to a large amount of information about their clients.

Finally, the Island has a high number of small businesses and not-for-profit organisations. Each of these organisations holds information about customers, clients and service users. Many of them do not have the knowledge or staff they need for strong cyber security.

A successful cyber attack on any one of these organisations could affect many people. Any cyber attack can disrupt services, and cause financial loss. Successful attacks can lead to a loss of trust in businesses and institutions.

Depending on its target and the scale, a cyber attack could have more widespread consequences. In more serious cases, a cyber attack could cause environmental damage. In the worst cases, a successful cyber attack could pose a threat to people’s lives.

This is why it is important that we all do what we can to protect ourselves from cyber attacks. Protecting yourself will look different if you’re a business, a charity, or an individual. That’s why we produce information tailored to different parts of Jersey’s community.

 You can find more information on the National Centre for Cyber Security (NCSC) website.