Global Cyber Alliance sets out plan to tackle top cyber threats

Originally appearing on the City of London Police website:

The Global Cyber Alliance (GCA), a non-profit organisation aimed at tackling the cyber threat set up by the New York County District Attorney, City of London Police and the Center for Internet Security, has identified the top four risks to the online world.

At a joint meeting held yesterday (Wednesday, 17 May) at London’s Guildhall, New York County District Attorney Cy Vance, Commissioner Ian Dyson and CEO of the GCA, Phil Reitinger spoke to businesses to update them on their work identifying the biggest cyber threats and the measures being developed to tackle them.

The GCA was formed in 2015 and is made up of cyber professionals that have set about to identify the top four cyber threats and begin to build solutions that will help businesses and organisations protect customers and the wider public.

The top four risks identified are –

  • Phishing
  • Risks arising from weak identity and authentication mechanisms,
  • Risks arising from vulnerable and compromised websites, and
  • Distributed Denial of Service (DDoS) attack.

Phishing is a social engineering attack in which a fraudulent email message is sent and appears to be coming for a legitimate organization or user. The goal of this attack is to either steal personal identifiable information (i.e. passwords, bank or credit card information) or to infect systems with malware, such as ransomware.

The GCA has decided to tackle phishing by driving the implementation of two solutions that have been shown to be effective. The first is domain based message authentication, reporting and conformance (DMARC). DMARC provides a mechanism for organisations to check that incoming mail is authorised by the body it claims to be from. This would prevent emails from ever arriving as those that aren’t authorised would be filtered out. The end user would then be able to trust that the source of the email as it would be authenticated.

The second solution being developed is known as a Domain Name Service Response Policy Zones (DNS RPZ). This is going to be an open source intelligence platform that collects and analyses cyber attacks against all members of the GCA so that they can be analysed and solutions shared with all members.

The mission of the GCA is to identify systemic cyber risks where significant and measurable progress can be made to tackle the threats. The GCA has offices in both London and New York and is being funded through a five-year investment by New York Country District Attorney Cy Vance.

The Global Cyber Alliance now comprises more than 50 international partners across 15 economic sectors, including security, defense, retail, healthcare, insurance, energy, aviation, education, law enforcement, government, and finance institutions.

Manhattan District Attorney, Cyrus R. Vance, Jr, stated: “The Global Cyber Alliance was formed through a shared commitment to reducing cyber risk worldwide and improving the security of an increasingly interconnected digital landscape.

“As a non-profit organization, GCA has no motive apart from neutralizing malicious cyber activity through the voluntary exchange of threat data and intelligence shared by more than 50 international partners in various areas of industry and practice.

“By developing innovative strategies to address key vulnerabilities, GCA is committed to improving cyber safety on a global level, ultimately benefitting many more than its constituent members.”

Commissioner of the City of London Police, Ian Dyson QPM said: “The cyber threat is one of the biggest threats we face throughout the world and it is only by recognising that the solution is also global that we can begin to solve the problem.

“Collaboration with business as well as law enforcement agencies worldwide will ensure we understand the threat better and the solutions already being developed by the Global Cyber Alliance can help to protect us all.

“This is a crime prevention initiative at its heart and investment in this area will help us reduce the cyber threat in both human and monetary terms.

Phil Reitinger, President and CEO of the Global Cyber Alliance said: “Systemic cyber risks are hard to define, understand and quantify but we do know that we can no longer stand on the sidelines admiring the problem. We must take action. We must do something.

“By joining together, regardless of sector and geography, we are able to identify and implement solutions and strategies to improve the global digital network.

“The support and partnership the Global Cyber Alliances has with the City of London Police and the District Attorney of New York exemplify the commitment needed to tackle these problems and eradicate cyber threats across the globe.”

Lord Mayor, Jeffrey Mountevans said,
“The cyber threat to the business community cannot be overestimated. It puts jobs, prosperity and security at risk, here and overseas. The work of the Global Cyber Alliance and the wider cyber security industry helps tackle the underlying causes and make us all safer.

“The threat to the two largest global financial centre’s in London and New York is the same. Working together will ensure a unified and effective response to that threat.”

The City of London Police is responsible for policing the City’s business district, the ‘Square Mile’ in the historical centre of London. In addition, it holds national responsibility for Economic Crime and under this remit is host to Action Fraud (the national fraud and cybercrime reporting service), the National Fraud Intelligence Bureau, the Insurance Fraud Enforcement Department and the Police Intellectual Property Crime Unit. The City of London continues to be one of the safest urban areas in the country.

The City of London Police press office can be contacted on 0207 601 2220.

For more information on the work of the Global Cyber Alliance go to –

For more information on the work of the Center for Internet Security go to –