Britain and the United States will increase cooperation on cyber security, Prime Minister David Cameron said, setting up "cyber cells" to share intelligence and conduct simulated attacks to test the defences of organisations such as banks.
Cameron is on a two-day visit to Washington focused on the economy and security, and is due to have a second meeting with President Barack Obama on Friday at the White House.
"We have got hugely capable cyber defences, we have got the expertise and that is why we should combine as we are going to, set up cyber cells on both sides of the Atlantic to share information," Cameron told the BBC in an interview aired on Friday.
The cooperation between Britain's GCHQ eavesdropping agency and the U.S. National Security Agency will include joint war games, with the first exercise later this year to involve the Bank of England and commercial banks in both the City of London and Wall Street, the BBC reported.
"This is a real signal it is time to step up the efforts and to do more," said Cameron.
The British leader said he also planned to discuss with Obama how the two countries could work more closely with big Internet companies such as Facebook and Google to monitor communications between terror suspects.
(Reporting by Kylie MacLellan; Editing by Dominic Evans)