OTTAWA, ONTARIO--(Marketwire - Oct. 23, 2012) - The Honourable Vic Toews, Canada's Public Safety Minister, today responded to the tabling of the Auditor General of Canada's Fall Report in the House of Commons. Chapter 3 offers an overview of the importance of cyber security to Canadians and Canada's critical infrastructure.
"The report itself recognizes the positive steps that Public Safety Canada has taken, and it acknowledges the progress that the Government has made since the launch of our cyber security and critical infrastructure strategies in 2010," said Minister Toews. "We have, in fact, made exceptional progress, particularly in recent years, in the midst of an evolving threat environment. We are confronted by real and significant threats, and while there is still more to be done, our Government is committed to working with our partners to ensure continued progress."
In 2010, as part of the Government of Canada's commitment to defending Canada's critical infrastructure and cyber security, the Minister of Public Safety announced both Canada's Cyber Security Strategy and National Strategy and Action plan for Critical Infrastructure. These plans work to ensure the resilience of cyber systems and critical infrastructure vital to Canadian security and economic prosperity.
"We have been deeply engaged with the Government of Canada on critical infrastructure and cyber security and have built a strong partnership that helps industry to protect those assets that are critical to the safety, security and economic well-being of Canadians" said Jim Burpee, President and CEO of the Canadian Electricity Association. "Among examples of this collaboration are the memorandum of understanding CEA has with the Canadian Cyber Incident Response Centre on information and intelligence sharing, and participation at the National Cross Sector Forum."
In partnership with industry and all levels of government, the Government has taken action to meet its commitment to keeping Canada's cyber systems secure and to protecting critical infrastructure, including the following:
-- Launched in 2010 the National Strategy and Action Plan for Critical Infrastructure, Canada's plan to address the full range of risks and threats to the infrastructure which forms the backbone of our economy, our security, our health and our way of life;
-- Launched in 2010 Canada's Cyber Security Strategy, which aims to secure Government of Canada systems, enhance partnerships with industry and other governments to protect vital systems, and help Canadians keep their personal information safe and secure;
-- Enhanced longstanding partnerships with critical infrastructure sectors, including energy, finance, and transportation, by creating networks for each critical infrastructure sector and also by creating a National Cross Sector Forum in 2010 to coordinate risk management activities across the sectors and across Canada;
-- Invested $155 million over five years to reinforce federal government cyber security capabilities, expand the operational capacity of the Canadian Cyber Incident Response Centre, and improve the detection of and response to continually evolving cyber threats for the benefit of all Canadians;
-- Created Shared Services Canada, which streamlines and consolidates the Government of Canada's IT infrastructure and services in the areas of email, data centres and networks and strengthens the security and safety of Government data; and
-- Launched Get Cyber Safe in 2011, the national public awareness campaign created to educate Canadians about Internet security and the simple steps individuals can take to protect themselves online. The campaign is a key component of Canada's Cyber Security Strategy.
"As we've shown with our recent $155 million investment to strengthen Canada's cyber defenses, our Government is continuously working to enhance cyber security in Canada by identifying threats and vulnerabilities, and by preparing for and responding to all types of cyber incidents," said Minister Toews. "We will continue to work to strengthen our capacity to protect our critical infrastructure from cyber threats, to better protect Canada and Canadians."
Mr. Burpee congratulated the Government of Canada for recognizing the imperative of partnership, noting that the Government recognizes that the majority of critical infrastructure is owned and operated by private industry or other levels of government. "Through the National Strategy and Action Plan for Critical Infrastructure, launched two years ago, all of these players are engaged and working together to address Canada's cyber security challenges."
Public Safety Canada's responses to the OAG's recommendations are included in the Fall 2012 Report. It is also posted online at: www.oag-bvg.gc.ca.
For more information, please visit the website www.publicsafety.gc.ca.
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