Signal IT Solutions

A Message from Lord Pickles and Lord Blunkett, followed by Signal IT Solutions's best practice article

The ability to listen and learn from one another has always been vital in parliament, in business and in most aspects of daily life. But at this particular moment in time, as national and global events continue to reiterate, it is uncommonly crucial that we forge new channels of communication and reinforce existing ones. The following article from Signal IT Solutions is an attempt to do just that. We would welcome your thoughts on this or any other Parliamentary Review article.

Blunkett signature Rt Hon The Lord David Blunkett
Pickles signature Rt Hon The Lord Eric Pickles

Operations Manager
Specialists in cybersecurity design,
consultancy and education
Signal IT Solutions is a leading provider of cybersecurity
consultancy, management and education services.
Operations Manager Steve Wagner outlines the
company’s commitment to helping SMEs harness enterprise-
grade cybersecurity.
The rise of cybersecurity awareness
The relentless rise of cyberattack sophistication, state actor involvement and
an ever-increasing burden from regulators has led to a dramatic increase in
cybersecurity awareness within enterprises. As a result, cybersecurity is now a
primary concern for many organisations thanks to the risks and the potential for
company destruction resulting from a cybersecurity breach. The cybersecurity
industry has traditionally favoured enterprises due to budget and resource. At
Signal, we are passionate about levelling the playing field for SMEs.
As the cybersecurity landscape has expanded in terms of both threats and
sophistication, the response measures adopted by enterprise-sized businesses
and developed by cybersecurity vendors have also matured. Targeted and
proficient cybersecurity operations within many enterprises is now commonplace.
This typically incorporates a chief information security officer reporting
directly to the board. Increased, ringfenced cybersecurity budgets allow for
leading-edge talent, training, tools and platforms. Even against this backdrop,
enterprises have – as evidenced by many reported landmark cases – still been
subject to high-profile cybersecurity breaches, often with significant damage to
»Operations Manager:
»Managing Director:
»Founded in 2000
»Located in Portishead, near
»Services: Cybersecurity
consultancy, management and
»No. of employees: 17
Signal IT Solutions
Highlighting best practice
What about SMEs?
While the SME markets undoubtedly
benefit from understanding and
adopting the initiatives and strategies
undertaken by the enterprises in the
long run, the contrasting aggressive
pace of cybercrime advancement
means uptake is not happening
Additionally, the supply chain network
is often fulfilled by smaller businesses
inherently resulting in the “weakest
link” scenario with vulnerabilities
affecting vertically up the chain.
At Signal IT Solutions, we have
observed – with increasing alarm – an
effective “cybersecurity class system”
emerging between the enterprise and
SME markets.
We strongly believe this should not
be the case. We elevate SMEs to a
position of excellence in cybersecurity.
A touch of CLASS
Our mission is to make security
accessible to all businesses through a
comprehensive security programme
based around five key pillars:
»Community – collaborative,
strategic and relatable cybersecurity
information and advice
»Layering – comprehensive and
targeted layering of cybersecurity
response strategies
»Awareness – provision of
cybersecurity awareness, training,
education and compliance
»Standards – application and
adherence to best practice in
cybersecurity practices and
»Solutions – blending of appropriate
platforms and solutions to identify,
protect, detect, respond and
Managing Director
Richard Collins
With their
Signal IT
Solutions has
developed a
unique and
service which
will greatly
assist any
business looking
for a mature
approach to
Kenny Thornton
Head of Infrastructure
BTG plc
Where we face challenges
The disparity between the enterprise
posture and the typical SME posture is
stark and evident.
Many SMEs have become primary
targets as they do not have a sufficient
level of cybersecurity awareness,
expertise or a co-ordinated strategy to
prevent and respond, yet are sufficiently
large to be an attractive and valuable
target. The resultant impact for these
businesses is potentially devastating.
SMEs are often under the misconception
that they adhere to best practice
and have a coherent strategy while
simultaneously being unable to
objectively evaluate their approach
thanks to lack of a comprehensive
understanding – also known as the
Dunning-Kruger effect.
In other cases, business can be observed
undertaking accreditation or alignment
against frameworks including ISO
27001 and Cyber Essentials with their
underlying objective solely being to
secure a contract or to restore trust
following a breach. Often, these
businesses apply the minimum effort
required, maintaining few of the core
controls and principles that underpin
Our assertions are evidenced by the
increasing number of businesses
reported daily that are breached who
have stated adherence.
It should be noted that the accrediting
bodies themselves perform a robust
function given the limited time
allocation and visibility to fully evaluate
all controls in place.
How we respond and operate
At Signal IT Solutions, we understand
that cybersecurity is about blending
function and control to ensure
a layered cybersecurity strategy
that drives the most appropriate
posture with relation to risk, cost
We take a holistic view, undertaking
a gap analysis against existing best
practice to determine where our clients
are “actually” positioned. From this
point, we can help a client outline their
strategy and response to the risks they
face and select the most appropriate
approach and blend of solutions.
In addition, we provide a virtual chief
information security officer, or vCISO,
function for businesses who aspire
to implement a comprehensive, multi
layered strategy to cybersecurity
protection and response while
avoiding the high costs and
challenges associated with attracting
and retaining a proficient in-house
cybersecurity function.
About Signal IT Solutions
We were founded by Richard Collins in
2000, borne out of a desire to deliver
digital transformation to SMEs who
aspire to elite performance, scalability
and security without compromise.
With a reputable client base including
some household names, both in the
UK and globally, we recently launched
our CLASS programme cybersecurity
initiative – aimed at bringing affordable
and comprehensive managed
strategies for cybersecurity to SMEs.
Our strength and reputation are
built on a mission to deliver and add
value to every client engagement and
relationship. This is driven through
the passion and commitment of our
leadership team.
What is our goal?
At Signal IT Solutions, we have taken
significant time to reflect and focus on
our identity, strengths, core values and
priorities, with high-quality, affordable
and understandable cybersecurity
emerging as our primary focus.
We have identified a number of key
initiatives in 2019 to promote this
mission, including engagement with
regional police cybercrime units, our
virtual CISO service launch, building
relationships with key stakeholders
and vendors within the cybersecurity
industry and development of
a comprehensive cybersecurity
programme – CLASS – to address
We have taken
significant time
to reflect and
focus on our
strengths and
core values, with
emerging as our
primary focus
Richard Collins
Managing Director
CLASS programme
– comprehensive
cybersecurity for SMEs
Layered cybersecurity
blending function and

This article was sponsored by Signal IT Solutions. The Parliamentary Review is wholly funded by the representatives who write for it. The publication in which this article originally appeared contained the following foreword from Rt Hon Michael Gove.

Rt Hon Michael Gove's Foreword For The Parliamentary Review

By Rt Hon Michael Gove

This year's Parliamentary Review comes at a momentous time for parliament, as we collectively determine the destiny of the United Kingdom. 

On October 31, the UK will leave the European Union. The successful implementation of this process is this government's number-one priority.

Three years after a historic referendum vote, we will deliver on the decisive mandate from the British people. Trust in our democracy depends on it. Until that final hour, we will work determinedly and diligently to negotiate a deal, one that abolishes the backstop and upholds the warm and close relationship we share with our friends, allies and neighbours in the EU. But in the event that the EU refuses to meet us at the table, we must be prepared to leave without a deal.

As the Chancellor of the Duchy of Lancaster, it is my job to lead on this government's approach, should that scenario happen. Preparing for Brexit is my department's driving mission. But while I am leading this turbocharged effort, the whole of government is committed to this endeavour.

Ministers across Whitehall are working together to ensure that every possibility is considered, every plan is scrutinised and every provision is made. A daily drumbeat of meetings means that we are holding departments accountable, so that preparations are completed on time.

The chancellor has confirmed that all necessary funding will be made available. And we have mobilised thecivil service, assigning 15,000 of our most talented civil servants to manage our exit from the EU.

We will make sure that on November 1, there is as little disruption to national life as possible. Our trade relationships will continue to thrive, thanks to agreements with countries around the world worth £70 billion. Our country will remain secure, thanks to nearly 1,000 new officers posted at our borders. And the 3.2 million EU nationals now living and working among us can remain confident, with absolute certainty, of their right to remain in the UK.

Above all, our goal is to be transparent. Soon, we will launch a public information campaign so that citizens, communities and businesses are ready and reassured about what will happen in the event of “no deal”.

In my first few weeks in this role, I have travelled to ports and tarmacs, borders and bridges, all across the UK –from the seaside of Dover to the rolling green hills of County Armagh. I have heard from business owners and border officials, farmers and hauliers. They are ready to put an end to uncertainty. And they are ready to embrace the opportunities ahead.

Our departure from the EU will be a once in a lifetime chance to chart a new course for the United Kingdom. Preparing for that new course will be a herculean effort. But this country has made astounding efforts before. We can do it again.
Rt Hon Michael Gove
Chancellor of the Duchy of Lancaster