The PSN is a network designed to enable public sector organisations to communicate with each other securely and cost effectively.
Although the Network is now being rolled out in numerous places, it has not been without challenges – many have reported that meeting security compliance rules has been difficult.
Socitm points out that all authorities connected to the PSN must undertake an annual Code of Connection compliance review.
Such reviews run in parallel with other required assessments and complement audits conducted by suppliers of PSN services.
The intention is to ensure safeguards are in place so that information transmitted across the Network is secure and no data is placed at risk.
“Last year’s compliance process was particularly challenging with the additional pressure of transitioning to a different carrier,” claimed Socitm.
“Councils going through the compliance process highlighted a number of issues to the sector’s representative bodies including Socitm, the Local Government Association (LGA) and Solace with worked with the Cabinet Office to more effectively provide support and advice to individual councils to help them through the process,” it added.
The organisation claims it recognises the positive impact that collaboration had on authorities achieving compliance, but there are lessons to be learnt from last year.
Socitm wants further clarification around specific business needs such as BOYD (Bring Your Own Devices) and the sharing of data with non-PSN organisations when required.
Other organisations have taken steps to ensure the process is improved from last year – CEO of LGA Carolyn Downs has exchanged letters with Cabinet Office COO Stephen Kelly about need for central and local government to work closely together.
Socitm has also created Task and Finish Groups to explore issues highlighted by local government.
It has also facilitated the Solutions Advisory Group (SAG) so that authorities can share knowledge and experience surrounding successfully achieving compliance.