Better protection from hostile cyber attacks for businesses

British businesses and the public are set to be better protected from hostile cyber attacks and online threats like disinformation and cyber bullying.

Business Secretary Andrea Leadsom has announced a new government-backed partnership with industry, through the Arm project, to develop new chip technologies that are more resistant to cyber threats, backed by £36 million in funding.

The project has the potential to prevent hackers from remotely taking control of computer systems as well as targeting cyber attacks and breaches, meaning more businesses providing online services are better protected. This partnership forms the next phase of the Government’s Digital Security by Design initiative, also backed by Google and Microsoft.

Leadsom said: “Cyber attacks can have a particularly nasty impact on businesses, from costing them thousands of pounds in essential revenue to reputational harm. Cyber criminals operate in the shadows, with the severity, scale and complexity of breaches constantly evolving. It’s critical that we are ahead of the game and developing new technologies and methods to confront future threats, supporting our businesses and giving them peace of mind to deliver their products and services safely. Investing in our world-leading researchers and businesses to develop better defence systems makes good business and security sense.”

The average cost of a cyber-attack on a business – where a breach has resulted in loss of data or assets – has increased by more than £1,000 since 2018 to £4,180.

A further project, backed by £18 million of government investment, through the Strategic Priorities Fund, will tackle some of the dangers of the online world from privacy abuses and wrongful use of data like disinformation and online fraud.

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