While government organisations such as the NHS are slowly waking up to the reality that security attacks are here to stay, implementing a SOC is only one of many challenges that they face. By issuing an invitation to tender, does the idea of outsourcing to a partner company imply that the NHS wishes to drop all responsibility and accountability for future attacks?
Timely that this decision is made after the recent budget in a pre-GDPR era. And while real-time monitoring is a great step forward, the fact remains that many medical and clinical devices and systems that are in dire need of replacement are simply not part of this £20m spend. Also how much of that £20m will actually be put to good use by the time consulting and management fees are deducted?
While a SOC will help with monitoring, alerting and analysis for network infrastructure, servers and endpoints, it will not solve the challenge of keeping old medical equipment in play as many of these devices are so old and require big spending to update to newer equipment that no amount of technology and budget can solve all security problems without physically replacing equipment.
And there lies the problem. The foundations were laid many years ago by neglecting government spend on securing networks and systems. Yet it will cost many more millions to replace the medical and clinical devices which often cause security problems due to outdated hardware and software that simply cannot be upgraded any further, which are still very much being neglected.
In a statement, Dan Taylor, head of the data security centre at NHS Digital, said the centre would create and run a "near-real-time monitoring and alerting service that covers the whole health and care system"