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Electronic Warfare

Volume 508: debated on Wednesday 24 March 2010

To ask the Minister of State, Department for Transport what assessment he has made of the effects of an electromagnetic pulse strike caused (a) deliberately and (b) through solar activity on the critical infrastructure of his Department. (321758)

The Government's Cyber Security Strategy of the United Kingdom, published alongside and reflected in the National Security Strategy update of June 2009, considers a number of methods of cyber attack, including those that generate high levels of radio frequency power that can damage or disrupt unprotected electronics.

In addition, the Communications Electronic Security Group (CESG) provides Government Departments with advice and guidance on how to protect against, detect and mitigate various types of cyber attack.

It is not in the interests of the UK's national security for this Department to confirm whether it holds information about assessments of the effects of an electromagnetic pulse. Such disclosure could undermine the integrity and security of the UK's critical national infrastructure and thereby expose it to potential threats, which is not in the public interest.