Cyber Essentials is changing: Everything you need to know

Posted on 09/01/2020

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From April 2020, the Cyber Essentials scheme is changing and will only operate through IASME Consortium. Find out more about the latest developments in the government-backed scheme below.

What is the Cyber Essentials scheme?

The Cyber Essentials Scheme is an information security standard, developed by the UK Government and National Cyber Security Centre (NCSC) to make the UK a safer place to live and do business online.

There are two levels to the certification – Cyber Essentials and Cyber Essentials PLUS – that allow businesses to demonstrate that they’re meeting government standards of cyber hygiene.


What’s changing?

Under the current scheme, businesses achieve accreditation through specialist external certification bodies, such as Air Sec. Each certification body is managed by an NCSC approved “delivery partner” of which there are five: IASME Consortium, CREST, APMG, IRM Security and QG.

The NCSC has announced that, as of Wednesday 1st April 2020, IASME will be the only delivery partner to manage the scheme.


Why is it changing?

Whilst the scheme has operated effectively to date, each of the five delivery partners has developed its own slightly different way of working.

To remove any discrepancies in the certification process, the NCSC has made the decision to simplify the scheme by appointing IASME as the sole delivery partner. This will ensure all organisations undertaking either Cyber Essentials or Cyber Essentials PLUS are working to the same standard.


Will my current Cyber Essentials certification be affected?

The Cyber Essentials Scheme will continue to operate in its current form until Tuesday 31st March 2020, with IASME taking responsibility from Wednesday 1st April 2020.

The NCSC has advised that any organisation looking to undertake the certification or re-certify should continue to apply in the existing way, regardless of which delivery partner oversees their chosen certification body, until April. After this point, all applications will be handled under the new version of scheme.

Any organisations who have started but not completed certification before April will be able to finish their existing application until Tuesday 30th June 2020.


Find out more about Cyber Essentials

As a Cyber Essentials certification body already operating under IASME, Air Sec offer full support and certification for both Cyber Essentials and Cyber Essentials PLUS.

If you’d like to find out more about the Cyber Essentials Scheme and other regulatory compliance, please contact us to speak to a specialist today.

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