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COP26 threatened by cyber hackers who may sabotage Glasgow’s train network

COP26 is being threatened by cyber hackers.

Glasgow’s infrastructure – including the underground and train network – has been put on high alert by police and security experts.

They believe there is a viable threat to sabotage the 12-day climate change summit at the SEC in November.

COP26 will see 196 world leaders attend, possibly including US President Joe Biden, and 30,000 delegates gather.

IT systems of large companies and government bodies are also under threat.

The Sunday Mail can reveal that Police Scotland has set up a specialist team.

Strathclyde Passenger Transport (SPT) is also increasing security measures over fears that the hackers may target the computer systems used to operate Glasgow’s underground rail network.

Alex Dowall, Detective Superintendent for Cyber Investigations at Police Scotland, said: “We know criminals will exploit any opportunity for their own gain and COP26 will be no different.”

Measures to combat a cyber attack were revealed in an SPT meeting.

The authority plans to ramp up security with Gordon Dickson, head of business strategy and delivery, saying: “We’ve got a separate group looking at cyber security.

“In terms of the Subway, we are having to look at our security requirements for that and working closely with emergency
services, security and police on the plans.”

The most common cyber threats target websites, social media and email passwords, with bogus emails asking for security information and personal data.

The Scottish Business Resilience Centre operates out of Linlithgow, West Lothian.

It advised: “With less than 100 days to go until COP26, businesses should already be taking steps to protect themselves – both physically and online.”

Glasgow City Council has hired its own cyber crime consultant and is planning an exercise to test its response.

The Scottish Government is working with the UK Government, the UN, Police Scotland and the National Cyber Security Centre (NCSC) to resist any attacks.

An NCSC spokesman said: “The NCSC plays an active role in supporting the security of events such as COP26 and we work closely with the Scottish Government and Police Scotland to identify and respond to a range of threats.”



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