Speaking at the 2017 InfoSecurity event in London, Rimington reflected on experiences from her time at MI5 tackling the likes of the IRA, declaring the current challenges facing the security services more difficult as a result of technology advances.
The government has been highly critical of large tech communication firms building end-to-end encryption into their products, a security feature which Remington singled out as making it harder for security services to obtain intelligence.
“The interception of communications and providing our [security] services with the legal base they need to continue to intercept communications as they change rapidly – and [as] encryption increases and increases – is one of the issues which is facing our current intelligent services, government ministers and those that give power to our intelligence services,” she said.
In the wake of the recent terrorist attacks, tech companies are worried that the government will force them to limit the amount of encryption tech firms employed on their products.
Rimington said: “I think we’re facing a very difficult world. We’re facing a world of cyber espionage which nobody really knows effectively how to deal with [and] we’re facing a world of very, very complex communications which make it very difficult for our intelligence services to keep pace. We’re facing hideous ideologies with a determination now merely just to kill people.”