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Security at home and abroad

Security at home and abroad

Overarching communication objective: Support the UK’s national security by promoting foreign and defence policies, challenging mis- and disinformation, and protecting the public from crime.

Campaign key performance indicators (KPIs):
• Dissuade potential migrants from using dangerous or illegal methods to reach the UK. 
• Maintain support for Ukraine among domestic and international audiences.
• Drive adoption of behaviours that protect against fraud.
• Build media literacy skills to support resilience against mis- and disinformation techniques.

Securing our borders

The Government has a clear plan to tackle illegal migration and stop the boats. To support this, the Home Office will deliver targeted communications which deter people from making illegal, dangerous, and unnecessary journeys before they have decided to leave their home country. Following a successful pilot in Albania, around two fifths of the target audience said they were less interested in moving to the UK after seeing the adverts, and one third said they have changed or reconsidered plans to travel illegally. 

Defending our interests and allies

The Ministry of Defence (MOD) and the Armed Forces protect the safety, security and interests of the UK, at home and abroad. From operating at the heart of NATO, the world’s most successful military alliance, to leading the international effort to support Ukraine, communication plays a key role in delivering as well as promoting key UK foreign and defence policy priorities.

The UK has committed £7 billion in military aid to Ukraine since the conflict began, including £2.5 billion in military aid in 2024/25. This will allow the Government to deliver advanced capabilities, equipment and training to the Armed Forces of Ukraine, through initiatives such as Operation Interflex, which has now trained over 52,000 Ukrainian soldiers under UK armed forces programmes. We will continue to use influential international and domestic communications to show our continued solidarity with Ukraine, working with global partners and allies.

2024 is a historic year for NATO, as the Alliance celebrates its 75th birthday. We will use this milestone to engage audiences of all ages and highlight NATO’s pivotal role in promoting global peace and stability since its foundation. 6 June 2024 also marks the 80th anniversary of the Normandy Landings. Working with the Commonwealth War Graves Commission, the Normandy Memorial Trust, the Royal British Legion and the British Embassy in Paris, the MOD will lead a communication campaign throughout the Spring to involve members of the UK public and overseas audiences in commemorating the anniversary, which will culminate in a series of events across the UK and in France.

Amidst recent rapid developments in technology and AI, more than 40% of the world’s population are due to vote in 2024. Work to guard against misinformation and disinformation has never been more important, and we will support cross-government efforts in this crucial area. We will help build awareness and understanding of manipulation techniques and educate UK audiences on how to protect themselves and others.

Strategic communication: a tool for global influence
Communication plays an increasingly critical role in modern national security, and communicators must therefore also be equipped with information statecraft capability in a rapidly-changing global environment. GCS developed the PITCH toolkit to provide a structured approach for planning and delivering effective communications internationally. PITCH shows how to use partnerships, insight, trusted voices, compelling content and honesty to tell our story well and truthfully. It brings together helpful context on the modern information environment, as well as best practices, principles and case studies. 

Tackling crime

Since its launch in 2022, the Government’s ‘Enough’ campaign has helped to tackle violence against women by delivering a shift in the attitudes and behaviours that underpin abuse. Utilising cutting-edge behavioural science and an innovative combination of communication channels and partnerships, the multi-award winning campaign will continue to deepen society’s knowledge of these crimes, encourage people to safely challenge abuse and prompt reflection among perpetrators. 

The Home Office is also continuing its work to support communities affected by neighbourhood crime through the delivery of the Government’s Anti-social Behaviour Action Plan. Teams are working closely with police forces, local authorities and other agencies to take action against neighbourhood crime and signpost those affected to advice and support. Local stakeholder channels as well as national, regional and social media are being used to reach key audiences and build confidence and resilience by demonstrating the real-world impact of interventions.

The UK is a world leader in online safety, and the new Online Safety Act will deliver the most powerful child protection laws in a generation, while ensuring adults are better empowered to take control of their online lives. DSIT will work with the communications regulator, Ofcom, to ensure the public and stakeholders, including social media companies, understand the changes being brought into force. Social media platforms will be held responsible for the content they host and will face significant fines if they do not act rapidly to prevent and remove illegal content and stop children seeing material that is harmful to them. The Act makes it a criminal offence to share intimate images without consent and new laws will further criminalise the non-consensual sharing of intimate deepfakes.
The Home Office and National Cyber Security Centre are working together to keep communities safe from fraud, an ever-increasing danger in our society with an estimated 3.2 million offences each year. The new ‘Stop! Think Fraud’ campaign, launched in February 2024, will educate audiences on how they can recognise and protect themselves from fraudulent activity. This campaign demonstrates the power of partnerships, not only between multiple government bodies, but also with a wide range of industry and third-sector stakeholders who will play an instrumental role in spreading the knowledge and tools needed to stay ahead of scams. It draws on the expertise of leading counter-fraud experts and includes an online fraud hub which will provide concise, simple to follow advice and signpost victims to relevant organisations for further support.