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 British Government Communications Headquarters (GCHQ)

Government Communications Headquarters (GCHQ) is an intelligence and security organisation. A Civil Service Department, we report to the Foreign Secretary and work closely with the UK's other intelligence agencies (commonly known as MI5 and MI6). Our primary customers are the Ministry of Defence, the Foreign and Commonwealth Office and law enforcement authorities, but we also serve a wide range of other Government Departments.


GCHQ has two missions: signals intelligence (Sigint) and Information Assurance.


Our Sigint work protects the vital interests of the nation: we provide information to support Government decision making in the fields of national security, military operations and law enforcement. The intelligence we provide is at the heart of the struggle against terrorism and also contributes to the prevention of serious crime.


Information Assurance helps keep Government communication and information systems safe from hackers and other threats. We also help those responsible for the UK's critical national infrastructure (power, water, communications etc.) keep their networks safe from interference and disruption.

Government Communications Headquarters (GCHQ) is an intelligence and security organisation. A Civil Service Department, we report to the Foreign Secretary and work closely with the UK's other intelligence agencies (commonly known as MI5 and MI6). Our primary customers are the Ministry of Defence, the Foreign and Commonwealth Office and law enforcement authorities, but we also serve a wide range of other Government Departments. GCHQ has two missions: signals intelligence (Sigint) and Information Assurance. Our Sigint work protects the vital interests of the nation: we provide information to support Government decision making in the fields of national security, military operations and law enforcement. The intelligence we provide is at the heart of the struggle against terrorism and also contributes to the prevention of serious crime. Information Assurance helps keep Government communication and information systems safe from hackers and other threats. We also help those responsible for the UK's critical national infrastructure (power, water, communications etc.) keep their networks safe from interference and disruption.
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updated Sun. September 19, 2021

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The tech-savvy pupils are only 13, but it's hoped the event will inspire the next generation of cyber security experts. Chris Enshor is from the National Cyber Security Centre, he says the girls competing are "the future defenders of the UK" and that many of them will likely work for GCHQ as adults.
The security services are trying to recruit teenage computer hackers who have fallen foul of the law to defend the country against cyberattacks. A series of boot camps has been organised by Cyber Security Challenge UK and the police with support from the National Cyber Security Centre (NCSC), which is ...

Michael Burton, president of the Investigative Powers Tribunal, told the court that the Intelligence Services Commissioner, Mark Waller, who provided independent oversight over the intelligence agency had been aware of GCHQ's use of contractors, but appeared not to have been told that GCHQ was ...
Russian cyber attackers are targeting Britain thousands of times each and everyday, the former head of GCHQ has told LBC. Robert Hannigan said it was “clear” a number of the “countless” attacks were state-sponsored. He was speaking after Theresa May announced 23 Russian diplomats would be ...
Former boss at Brit electronic spy agency GCHQ, Robert Hannigan, has called for the application of "unexplained wealth orders" and economic sanctions against Russia rather than cyber attacks. Appearing on Radio 4's flagship Today programme this morning (Tuesday from 2:20-2:25), Hannigan said ...
Insurance brokers must play a more direct role in helping financial institutions and energy companies map and quantify cyber risk, a former director of the UK security agency GCHQ has said. Speaking at a Marsh Energy Insurance Conference in Dubai, Iain Lobban said insurance brokers should attend ...

GCHQ has warned that the charity sector is “particularly vulnerable” to cyber attacks, with rogue nations considered a specific threat. David Emm, Principal Security Researcher at Kaspersky Lab commented below. David Emm, Principal Security Researcher at Kaspersky Lab: “The threat of cyber-attacks is ...
The documents – from the National Security Agency and its British counterpart Government Communications Headquarters, or GCHQ – offer a unique insight into how U.K. and U.S. intelligence agencies responded in the aftermath of the London bombings. They reveal how the attackers may have been ...
In 2016, the UK's Government Communications Headquarters (GCHQ) announced it was launching its first ever startup accelerator. It was founded with the goal of 'supporting the growth and development of the next generation of cyber security companies, growing capacity and capability nationally.' ...
GCHQ has previously denied in court hearings that external contractors from companies that supply software and computer equipment have administrator rights to live computer systems holding some of the most sensitive data gathered through electronic interception of people's internet and phone activity.
There should be an international treaty on cyberwarfare that sets clear boundaries for nation states around hacking computer infrastructure, the former director of GCHQ has said. In a wide-ranging interview, Robert Hannigan spelled-out the growing threats cyberwarfare, Russia, and artificial intelligence ...
GCHQ's National Cyber Security Centre is backing a Cambridge, UK initiative to find the best ethical hackers to bolster global cyber security defences. GCHQ says it is supporting Inter-ACE – the biggest cyber security competition for university students in the UK – at Cambridge University on March 16 and ...
As The Intercept reported in 2014, the hack turned out to have been perpetrated by U.K. surveillance agency Government Communications Headquarters, better known as GCHQ. The British spies hacked into Belgacom employees' computers and then penetrated the company's internal systems.
Spies from GCHQ were brought in to help catch a paedophile who was blackmailing victims on the internet and forcing them to carry out degrading and humiliating acts. Cambridge graduate Matthew Falder used the dark web to target vulnerable men, women and children online, getting them to send ...
GCHQ's National Cyber Security Centre claims that its strategy of "actively defending" the UK against high-volume commodity attacks is working. The Active Cyber Defence (ACD) programme aims to "protect the majority of people in the UK from the majority of the harm, caused by the majority of the attacks, ...
The wording of Section 94 directions disclosed in court implied that requests would be signed either by the director of GCHQ or by a senior member of the SRT, rather than a secretary of state. At least one of the directions gave powers to a nominated GCHQ official to “make, renew, or modify requests”.
The National Cyber Security Centre, part of GCHQ, has published advice for charities on how they can protect themselves against cyber attacks such as fraud and extortion. It is based on a threat assessment on the sector. This is the first threat assessment that the NCSC has carried out for the sector.

Hollywood star Keira Knightley and former Doctor Who Matt Smith to play GCHQ whistleblower in film. Love Actually actress and The Crown star .... Reports say the English actress will take on the lead role about the woman who worked at GCHQ in Cheltenham. She was a Chinese linguist in the early years ...
South West Business. Expand. My Account; Subscriptions; Sign Out. Weather Image 3°CPartly Cloudy · Jobs · Psychotherapy · Book an ad · Buy a photo · Subscribe · Crosswords · Property · Motors · Buy/Sell · Directory · Family Notices · Dating · frontpage · News · Cheltenham News · GCHQ · News ...
On a windy hill in Scarborough, next to a slightly ramshackle sheep farm, one of Britain's most secret buildings sits behind a barbed-wire fence. It is a GCHQ base dating from the First World War, when our spies intercepted messages to and from the German fleet. More recently it spearheaded an ...
More than 746,000 phishing emails pretending to be from the NHS were blocked in just one month in 2017, the National Cyber Security Centre says. A report on the first year of the GCHQ unit's cyber-defence programme found that it removed 121,479 phishing sites hosted in the UK. This reduced the UK's ...
GCHQ's National Cyber Security Centre claims that its strategy of "actively defending" the UK against high-volume commodity attacks is working. The Active Cyber Defence (ACD) programme aims to "protect the majority of people in the UK from the majority of the harm, caused by the majority of the attacks, ...
The UK's mass surveillance programs haven't been treated kindly by the passing years (2013-onward). Ever since Snowden began dumping details on GCHQ surveillance, legal challenges to the lawfulness of UK bulk surveillance have been flying into courtrooms. More amazingly, they've been coming out ...
When terror attacks hit Paris in late 2015, British intelligence scrambled to find out what it could about the attackers - at the UK's spy agency, GCHQ, a team worked on tracing their communications while MI5 looked for connections to the UK. It was all a sign that modern threats - whether terrorism, cyber ...
The Government's mass surveillance programme to collect people's internet activity and phone records has been ruled unlawful by the Court of Appeal. Judges said the Data Retention and Investigatory Powers Act (Dripa) 2014 breached EU law as it allowed the data to be harvested for reasons other than ...
GCHQ has assured us that they have a strict policy on GPS enabled devices. A spokesman for GCHQ said: “We take the security of our staff very seriously, which is why we have very clear guidelines in place for the use of personal fitness devices”. In a statement, Strava said: “Our global heatmap represents ...
A secretive special air service base has been inadvertently revealed by a fitness app that has created a heatmap of running routes around the country. A SAS base in Hereford, along with a nuclear deterrent naval base and the government's spy agency GCHQ has been placed on a heatmap of Strava's ...
Among some of the opportunities being advertised there at the moment are information specialists at the Cheltenham-based Government listening station GCHQ. Swindon building society Nationwide is also recruiting, while the council has also sent adverts live for jobs within its library service. Despite the ...
Britain's GCHQ has developed a deterrent capacity of its own for use against other states, although the cost has been redacted in the intelligence and security committee's report. Cyber-attacks are far more urgent than the spectre of Russian tanks rolling towards underequipped British troops that has been ...
A TEENAGE computer ace has won £1,000 from GCHQ after decrypting secrets of an ancient mystery. James Hogge cracked a series of codes to secure first prize in the National Cipher Challenge, sponsored by the Government Communications Headquarters. The Abingdon School sixth former beat 8,255 ...
Robert Hannigan suggested tech companies were becoming more powerful than governments, and had a tendency to consider themselves above democracy. But he said he believed their window to change themselves was closing and he feared most were “missing the boat”. He predicted that if firms do ...
GCHQ put a puzzle on the radio to entice recruits — and you can try it here. The listening agency is pushing hard to recruit a more diverse staff, especially women. LONDON — GCHQ, the British government's listening agency, has broadcast a puzzle in an effort to encourage potential spies — particularly ...
In an attempt to boost these numbers and encourage more girls to explore cyber-based skills, the National Cyber Security Centre (NCSC), which is part of GCHQ, has opened registration for the online phase of the 2018 CyberFirst Girls Competition. It's open to girls in Year 8 in England and Wales, S2 in ...
The Intelligence Service Commissioner (ISC), in charge of external control of the British intelligence services, has extended GCHQ's capacity to use covert human intelligence sources (CHIS) in its operations. According to the ISC report published on December 20, in the future, GCHQ will be able to use ...
The puzzle was passed on Monday (15 January) to BBC Radio 4's Today show as part of its Puzzle for Today slot. It was submitted by the National Cyber Security Centre (NCSC), a subdivision of GCHQ which is specifically focused on preventing cyber attacks on important parts of the UK's infrastructure.
In its annual report that was published in December, the British parliament's Intelligence & (ISC) openly criticised GCHQ and the Security Intelligence (SIS), or MI6's, handling of their office space needs. Confronted with a shortage of space, since 2014, both services have launched various initiatives to ...
LONDON — Government Communications Headquarters, the British government's listening agency, has broadcast a puzzle to encourage prospective spies, particularly young girls, to pursue a career in the highly classified organisation. The challenge was supplied to BBC Radio 4's "Today" programme, ...
Millie Graham Wood, a solicitor at Privacy International, said: “It is extraordinary that GCHQ has written to its independent regulator to ask if it and 'wider government' can work together, essentially to head off legal claims. It is a blatant attempt to bury embarrassing evidence and claims against them.” Fulford ...
GCHQ said in the letter, sent in November, that it did not wish to undermine Fulford's independence or prejudice court hearings, but it suggested exploring whether “there may be appropriate options for resolving any factual issues which may exist in relation to evidence currently before the IPT”.
An explosive new book claims former British Prime Minister Tony Blair told Donald Trump there was a rumour that UK intelligence services spied on the Trump campaign. Blair denies the allegations, with a spokesperson calling it "categorically absurd." A month after the disputed meeting allegedly took ...
An explosive new book claims former British Prime Minister Tony Blair told Donald Trump there was a rumour that UK intelligence services spied on the Trump campaign. Blair denies the allegations, with a spokesperson calling it "categorically absurd." A month after the disputed meeting allegedly took place, Trump publicly ...
He says through its social media manipulation operations, spy agency Government Communications Headquarters (GCHQ) tried to influence online activists during the 2009 Iranian presidential election protests, and the 2011 uprisings widely known as the Arab Spring. Al-Bassam told the Chaos ...
Four years ago, GCHQ informed Parliament that it had worked to put “more flexible reward packages” in place to attract technical specialists. In an update on the initiative, GCHQ noted that “[this] has worked up to a point. It stemmed the flow of people going out in particular areas at particular stages of their ...
Video: Nine security startups join fresh intake for UK intelligence's accelerator. Two years after launching a programme to build up its cyber-attack capabilities, the UK's spy agency GCHQ claims to have "over-achieved" in its mission to build its cyber-arsenal.
The UK has substantially increased its hacking capabilities in recent years, an official report says. This includes the ability to attack other country's communications, weapons systems and even infrastructure. The details were revealed in the annual report of the Intelligence and Security Committee, which ...
The UK has substantially increased its hacking capabilities in recent years, an official report says. This includes the ability to attack other country's communications, weapons systems and even infrastructure. The details were revealed in the annual report of the Intelligence and Security Committee, which ...
Software designed to detect phishing emails, a platform to help developers write secure code, and a company which investigates cybercrime involving cryptocurrencies are just some of the ideas behind the startups that will join the second incarnation of GCHQ's cyber-accelerator. Showcased at a launch ...
The flaws were discovered by the National Cyber Security Centre (NCSC), a unit of the UK's spy agency GCHQ, which dispenses cyberdefense advice to the government and public. Just last week, for example, the NCSC told UK agencies hosting information classified 'secret' never to use any Russian ...
The Cyber Accelerator, which forms an element of the UK Government's £1.9bn National Cyber Security Strategy, is a collaboration between the Department for Digital, Culture, Media and Sport (DCMS), the National Cyber Security Centre (NCSC), which is part of GCHQ, and Wayra UK, which is part of the ...
Intelligence agency GCHQ has advised the UK government to ensure no Russian cybersecurity vendors are protecting Whitehall networks critical to national security. In an update issued on Friday, National Cyber Security Centre (NCSC) CEO, Ciaran Martin, argued — as Prime Minister Theresa May did ...


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