Changes to the Government Protective Marking System

In 2012 the Cabinet Office announced plans to implement major changes to the Government Protective Marking System (GPMS) between April and July 2013.  The changes will be pan Government. A series of consultations have taken place with all government departments required to report back to the Cabinet Office in mid February.

Why are these changes being made? The original six tier Protective Marking system was designed for paper based working. As part of the Civil Service Reform Plan (June 2012) some adaptations to the modern workplace environment have been recognised; namely flexible and mobile working with improved IT tools.  The Government views these changes as straightforward, proportionate and providing a risk managed approach to the way that information is classified and protected.

Whilst the new scheme applies easily to information assets including documents & portable media.  Due to the varying confidentiality, availability and integrity requirements of larger assets, online services and infrastructure, their specific risks will continue to be considered ensuring effective management and protection of these assets.

The latest update from the Cabinet Office –  A finalised version of the new Classification Policy has been released to departments, who are currently conducting their impact assessments with the expectation of a go-live later this year. Government Departments should now have a reasonable understanding of how the new scheme will impact them.

What is the Regency position on these changes? Regency is ready to support current and future clients’ transition to the new system.  All Government departments will have to make substantial process and behavioural change and Regency is already making early engagements with our clients to begin to understand where we can add value.  The Regency security team are following developments closely to ensure that we are at the forefront of this major change.