Government signals end to Public Services Network
The Public Services Network adds unnecessary complications to providing digital services and will be abandoned, according to the Government Digital Service.
PSN "can cause confusion and adds complexity for public sector organisations" - Photo credit: Fotalia
GDS director of technical architecture & head of technology James Stewart indicated in a blog post that technology leaders from government departments agree that, as more systems move to the cloud, using the internet is adequate for most services.
He said that the public sector is now on a ‘journey away from PSN’.
Civil service chief John Manzoni urges change as data revolution ‘comes for government’
GOV.UK to take more responsibility for local links as Local Directgov is retired
Unlocking the power of big data
The blog post said: “At a recent meeting of the Technology Leaders Network, we reviewed our position and it was clear that everyone agreed we could just use the internet.
“For the vast majority of the work that the public sector does, the internet is ok.”
Stewart emphasised the importance of ensuring the basic security of technology used by suppliers and government.
But he said that PSN no longer provided the best option for ensuring trust in data systems.
He said: “As we move more and more of our systems to public cloud services the expectation that we’ll communicate over the PSN can cause confusion and adds complexity for public sector organisations and our suppliers.”
In future, government will need to apply basic application-level security whether or not services are on the PSN.
“This then opens up the question of whether the extra layer of complexity is really helpful,” Stewart said.
However, he warned that the change will not happen immediately and organisations will need to connect to PSN for some time.
“But from today,” he said, “new services should be made available on the internet and secured appropriately using the best available standards-based approaches. When we’re updating or changing services, we should take the opportunity to move them to the internet.”
Mark Smith, head of PSN, has been working with data scientists in GDS and the National Cyber Security Centre (NCSC) to prototype other ways of providing assurance data, Stewart said, with more details to be revealed in a future blog post.
The first of a two-part recap of 2017 looks at the biggest stories and most significant developments in the first six months of the year
Organisation building centralised team to help Whitehall manage the digital implications of leaving the EU while maintaining longer-term transformation goals
PublicTechnology talks to the think tank’s digital and data specialist Eleonora Harwich about how AI could help eradicate disparity in the quality of healthcare and why GDS needs to focus...
Concern still mounting about ‘most disturbing issue to hit the industry for decades’
BT's Amy Lemberger argues that having the right security in place to protect your organisation is no longer just an option. It is a necessity.
BT brought together some their top security experts and CIOs from well known UK organisations to discuss digital transformation and the impact that it’s having on organisations