Press Release: 08. September 2014

HP Strengthens UK Public Sector Supply Chain with Affordable Cyber Security Accreditation for SMEs

New IASME security standard enables SMEs to demonstrate best practices in IT security and compete for UK government contracts

MALVERN, UK, Sept 8, 2014 — HP Enterprise Services UK today announced that it has strengthened its public sector supply chain by enabling more than 600 small/medium enterprises (SMEs) to demonstrate their ability to protect their IT systems from cyber threats with the affordable new IASME (Information Assurance for SMEs) security standard.

Developed by the Malvern-based IASME Consortium Ltd and piloted with the help of West Midlands SMEs, the IASME standard helps SMEs compete for public sector contracts by offering a cost-effective route to compliance with ISO/IEC 27001:2013, the complexity of which can be prohibitive for smaller suppliers.

“HP Enterprise Services is one of the UK government’s largest suppliers of IT systems, with a supply chain that includes more than 600 SMEs, and we need to make it easier for them to attain security accreditation,” says Stuart Bladen, vice president and general manager, UK Public Sector, HP. “As well as ensuring that the IASME standard can be readily implemented in our supply chain, this agreement opens up a market valued at up to £250,000 to the IASME Consortium which will ripple through to a variety of other Worcestershire-based SMEs. It demonstrates the value that SMES can bring to the government, larger IT suppliers and the local business community.”

IASME provides a realistic and affordable way for SMEs to prove that they are following best practice in information security. Available either through self-assessment or assessment by an independent auditor, the IASME standard and its implementation process include certification against the UK government’s Cyber Essentials scheme and automatic cyber liability insurance for UK companies who have less than £20m turnover. The cyber liability insurance package included is unique to IASME and delivered in partnership with local Worcester-based broker, Sutcliffe & Co. The standard is regularly revised to keep pace with changes in the information risk ecosystem.

"I am delighted to see another company choosing to base itself in our growing cluster at the heart of ‘cyber valley’,” says local MP Harriet Baldwin. “The government’s long-term economic plan is delivering huge growth in this sector and is putting Malvern firmly on the map. I had discussions about the IASME standard when the Science Minister visited us in Malvern, and it is great the HP has already hopped on board. I wish IASME every success as it helps to ensure that SMEs are appropriately protected from cyber-threats.”

“Cyber security is an increasingly important for issue for every business,” said Andrzej Kawalec, chief technology officer, HP Enterprise Security Services. “Our research shows that SMEs in the UK are spending twice the amount of large enterprises when responding to security breaches. At HP, we recognise that our cyber security consulting services must be aligned to the need of organisations of all sizes.”

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