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Wednesday, 3 October 2012

National security strategy unveiled

  • Published: Monday, 18 October 2010

The government has published its national security strategy. This includes where the greatest threats to the UK’s national security come from and how the Armed Forces, police and intelligence agencies will be equipped to deal with these threats. Among the most pressing risks identified were terrorism and a cyber attack.

'A Strong Britain in an Age of Uncertainty'

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'The National Security Strategy: A Strong Britain in an Age of Uncertainty' identified 15 priority risks to the UK’s national security.

The most pressing of these, referred to as ‘Tier 1’ risks are:

  • acts of terrorism affecting the UK or its interests
  • hostile attacks on UK Cyber Space
  • a major accident or natural hazard (eg, influenza pandemic)
  • an international military crisis between states, drawing in the UK and allies

To help manage and prepare for these risks, the national security strategy outlines eight key actions. These are to:

  • identify and monitor national security risks and opportunities
  • tackle at their root the causes of instability, both home and abroad
  • exert influence to exploit opportunities and manage risks
  • use British law and strengthen international rules to act against those who threaten the UK and our interests
  • protect the UK, and our interests at home, at the border and internationally to tackle physical and electronic threats from state and non-state sources
  • help resolve conflicts and create stability – where necessary intervene overseas, including the legal use of force to support UK interests and protect our overseas territories and people
  • prepare for all kinds of emergencies so we can recover from shocks and maintain essential services
  • work in alliances and partnerships wherever possible to produce stronger responses

The new national security strategy follows a speech by Jonathan Evans, the Director General of the Security Service (MI5), where he outlined specific threats to national security. He said that the UK faces a growing security challenge in Northern Ireland, a sustained risk from espionage and "continues to face a real threat from Al Qaida-related terrorism".

To read the new national security strategy in full, follow the link below.

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