£70 million to increase security of digital devices

Up to £70 million in government investment through the Industrial Strategy Challenge Fund will help businesses and consumers benefit from increased security and protections built into digital devices and online services.

Marking Data Privacy Day, Business Secretary Greg Clark announced measures for the UK to become a world leader in the race against some of the most damaging cyber security threats.

The investment will support research into the design and development of hardware so that they will be more secure and resilient from the outset, aiming to ‘design out’ many forms of cyber threats by ‘designing in’ security and protection technology into hardware and chip designs. The hope is that this will eradicate a significant proportion of the current cyber risks for businesses and services in future connected smart products.

With cyber threats constantly evolving, the best defence in the future is seen as developing innovative solutions that can work independently and protect against threats even during attacks. Therefore, the government wants to ensure that every UK organisation is as cyber secure and resilient as possible. This includes a further £30 million to ensure smart systems are safe and secure. There are expected to be more than 420 million such devices in use across the UK within the next three years.

Clark said: “This could be a real step-change in computer and online security, better protecting businesses, services and consumers from cyber-attacks resulting in benefits for consumers and the economy. With businesses having to invest more and more in tackling ever more complex cyber attacks, ‘designing in’ security measures into the hardware’s fabric will not only protect our businesses and consumers but ultimately cut the growing cybersecurity costs to businesses.

“This is our modern Industrial Strategy in action. Building on the UK’s heritage and strengths in computing and cyber security alongside the government and industry investing together to ensure the UK capitalises on its position to become a leader in the growing markets and technologies of tomorrow.”

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