Published on 16/07/2021
Cyber Security
  • Researchers from Aston University’s Cyber Security Innovation (CSI) Research Centre have been invited to respond to the call for evidence by the Department for Culture, Media and Sport (DCMS)
  • The centre works with businesses to help improve resilience to cyber attacks
  • It comes after a series of high-profile attacks on managed service providers affecting thousands of firms and compromising government agencies.

Experts from the Cyber Security Innovation (CSI) Research Centre at Aston University have responded to a call for evidence by the Department for Culture, Media and Sport (DCMS) on cyber security in supply chains and managed service providers.

The CSI centre works with businesses to help improve their security posture and develops state-of-the-art solutions for supply chain resilience and business continuity.

Recent research1 from the centre explored organisational approaches to supply chain management in the West Midlands, specifically in the times of remote arrangements and when traditional business continuity practices in supply chain management have been challenged.

It comes as two high profile attacks (SolarWinds and Kesya) on managed service providers threatened the world and brought to a standstill credit card processing for major retail chains in Sweden, while US government officials' personal data was compromised.

The €6.9m TRACE project, an EU-funded scheme of which Aston University is a key partner, addresses these issues and kicked off on Friday 9 July 2021.

Professor Vladlena Benson, director of the CSI at Aston Business School, recently attended a round table by the Minister of Digital Infrastructure.

She said:

“Based on the conclusions of our research, we make a recommendation that cyber security of any organisation, inclusive of its supply chain, should be promoted in conjunction with other organisational targets, such as profitability, productivity and financial/operational risk management.

“The identification and promotion of synergies between cyber security, profitability and productivity is a strong driver to ensure that, at a senior level, organisations take responsibility and accountability for effective cyber risk management.

Dr Donato Masi, from the CSI Centre at Aston University, said:

“Profitability or productivity are close to the competitive advantage of the firm and security of the supply chain of any organisation underpins its longevity on the market it operates in.

“Investment in cyber security measures, including supply chain risk assessment and counter-threat controls, should be viewed as a ‘cost of doing business’ and business success and/or longevity.”

1Find out more about the research of the CSI Centre here

Notes to Editors

About the Cyber Security Innovation Research Centre

The Cyber Security Innovation (CSI) Centre at Aston, established in 2020, brings together stakeholders from industry, government and leading cyber security research institutions with the aim to deliver industry-aligned research outcomes. CSI members include globally-recognised academics undertaking research projects that have impact and address real-world cyber security challenges through innovative solutions.

About Aston University

Founded in 1895 and a University since 1966, Aston is a long established university led by its three main beneficiaries – students, business and the professions, and our region and society. Aston University is located in Birmingham and at the heart of a vibrant city and the campus houses all the university’s academic, social and accommodation facilities for our students. Professor Alec Cameron is the Vice-Chancellor & Chief Executive.

Aston University was named University of the Year 2020 by The Guardian and the University’s full time MBA programme has been ranked in the top 100 in the world in the Economist MBA 2021 ranking. The Aston MBA has been ranked 12th in the UK and 85th in the world.

For media inquiries in relation to this release, contact Sam Cook, Press and Communications Manager, on (+44)7446 910063 or email:

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