Job Descriptions

24 Oct 2021

Senior Information Assurance and Security Advisor

Dstl Stand: S37 Badge Sponsor


Dstl Porton Down or Dstl Portsdown West

About the job


The Defence and Security of the UK is built upon, and depends on, its digital information and infrastructure foundations. These foundations need to be deep, rock solid and thoroughly trustworthy. Information Assurance, encompassing Information and Cyber Security, is the key discipline in ensuring the soundness of the foundations and the systems they support. Ministry Of Defence (MOD), and wider UK Government, rely on access to, and exploitation of, professional and expert technical advice and the latest technology developments to maintain and develop this dependability and trustworthiness.

Dstl is MOD’s primary provider of scientific and technical expertise in this area, together with access to relevant ground breaking research and development, no matter its source (eg in-house, Industry, Academia, International collaboration). Dstl’s Information Assurance and Security (IAS) Team is a focus for these activities.

Dstl requires an expert Information Systems professional who is passionate about information and cyber security, and has experience in engaging with and influencing senior stakeholders to communicate complex technical and policy issues in straightforward and persuasive ways. The role also requires someone with current knowledge and experience of developing, undertaking and driving innovative research programmes in this fast moving and often under-appreciated critical field.

Key functions of this role are enabling decision makers with specific, but non-security, backgrounds to understand the security consequences of their decisions, and influencing their approach to the acquisition and provision of enterprise and operational systems and services that are properly secure. This is part of Dstl’s role in supporting MOD in being an intelligent customer.

The role encompasses the need to establish and maintain close working relationships with a number of related Government agencies, as well as industry and academia, in order to provide the most comprehensive and up-to-date insights and guidance on the latest security concepts in policy, technology and product offerings as they relate to UK-wide Defence and Security.

Job description

The successful candidate will engage in a range of multi-faceted activities in the field of information and cyber security. This will span providing consultancy and advice, generating innovative and novel ideas and approaches, guiding research and development work in Dstl and externally, carrying out original analysis and development work, and understanding and inputting to policy and guidance generation.

In detail, the successful candidate will:
• provide expert IA technical advice to a range of stakeholders including the MOD Strategic Command and Defence Equipment & Support (DE&S) by delivering professional contribution and support across a range of research projects carried out by Dstl or through technical partnership with academia and industry;
• ensure their currency and Subject Matter Expertise through a variety of means, including first party research, maintaining a broad and detailed industry and academic awareness, and understanding the threat landscape and potential risks or opportunities;
• manage, guide and contribute to external research with industrial and academic partners and communicate the results to stakeholders by means of presentations and summary reports. This will also involve identifying and encouraging exploitation of developments to maximize the benefits of research;
• engage with internal and external stakeholders to understand and interpret requirements, and to deliver knowledge and expertise in a variety of formats, including reports, papers, direct stakeholder involvement and consultancy. This may involve challenging existing and emerging policies, processes and practices, and communicating effectively in difficult situations.


Dstl and, in particular, the IAS Team are looking for someone who has demonstrated experience or understanding in:
• using or recommending security technologies, policies and processes in support of both technical and non-technical stakeholders;
• security risk management;
• information and cyber security Science, Technology and Research;
• effective communication, in written and verbal format, of research outcomes and solutions that is adaptable to a number of different audiences, including the robust delivery of difficult messages;
• leading and participating in exploratory research teams;
• wide collaboration with other expert technical and scientific groups, and with policy and process developers.

In addition, the post holder may have experience of:
• defining and specifying secure end-to-end information systems architectures;
• current and emerging cryptographic and VPN techniques and their application in secure systems architectures;
• the UK Defence and Security environment;
• information and cyber security standards and policy (Government and/or Industry);
• industry awareness of and support to military systems.

Important Information
Our work in defence, security and intelligence requires our employees to be British Citizens who are able to gain a high level of security clearance to understand the work you will undertake to protect us from any security threats. For this reason, we regret that only UK Nationals will be able to apply for this role. If you are an international or dual-national candidate, and you think you have the skills we need, please consider applying to any of our government, security or defence partners.

This role will require full UK security clearance and you should have resided in the UK for the past 5 years. For some roles Developed Vetting will also be required, in this case you should have resided in the UK for the past 10 years.

If you are a current Dstl employee, you are encouraged to inform your line manager of your application as they can support you through the process and should you be successful it will help in negotiating a release date.

Work location
Dstl is strongly encouraging blended and flexible working either at one of our sites or from home or both. We want to empower you to undertake your duties at the most appropriate location for the task, however you will be allocated a Dstl site as a base. You may be required to travel to other Dstl and MoD sites as required.

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