UK Government announces £700,000 fund to grow the cyber security sector
A £700,000 fund has been launched to grow the cyber security sector across the UK.
The funding from the Department for Digital, Culture, Media and Sport (DCMS) will go to the UK Cyber Cluster Collaboration (UKC3), a network of 20 clusters of cyber businesses, employers and local organisations, which includes ScotlandIS Cyber in Scotland.
UKC3 was established to help cyber security businesses build partnerships and programmes that break down barriers to growth, such as skills gaps and a lack of business support, and provide a focal point for engagement within the industry.
The new investment will help to provide opportunities for networking and knowledge sharing, as well as supporting skills development and innovation.
Announcing the funding, UK Government minister for digital infrastructure Matt Warman said: “Our cyber security sector is already worth £8.9 billion and we’re working tirelessly to take its magnificent growth to the next level.
“Our new UK Cyber Cluster Collaboration will help tackle the barriers to growth, boost people’s digital skills and give firms a new route to develop their business acumen.”
UKC3 chair Richard Yorke said: “The UK’s thriving cyber sector is recognised as world leading and through greater collaboration, innovation and skills development we have a real opportunity to deliver growth that benefits businesses and individual citizens across the UK.
“This is an exciting and pivotal time for the cyber industry and we encourage organisations to engage with us to drive growth in the sector.”
UK Government minister for Scotland Iain Stewart added: “Scotland is home to over 100 cyber security companies as well as an even larger base of cyber professionals working in the industry and academia.
“This UK Government funding will further strengthen Scotland’s thriving cyber sector and digital economy, helping businesses across the country to collaborate and develop people’s skills while stimulating business growth.”
ScotlandIS will also be taking a lead role in developing cyber clusters across the UK.
Ciara Mitchell, cluster manager for Scotland’s cyber cluster at ScotlandIS, has been appointed as ecosystem development lead in UKC3.
Mitchell will focus on supporting new and emerging cyber clusters, as well as connecting the clusters across the UK and ensuring the Scottish cluster has opportunities to build partnerships with organisations throughout the UK.
There is an increasing focus on clusters as a way to create business networks in different parts of the tech sector.
ScotlandIS Cyber recently joined Global Ecosystems Partnership in Innovation and Cybersecurity (Global EPIC), a network of cyber clusters aimed at facilitating global collaboration in cybersecurity.
And the Scottish Cluster Ecosystem Alliance (SCEA), set up by ScotlandIS to promote collaboration and knowledge exchange across different areas such as fintech, space, mobility, cyber and data, recently held its inaugural meeting.
Mitchell said: “As the value of clusters to the tech sector is becoming more recognised, I am delighted to be taking a leading UK role in the new UK Cyber Cluster Collaboration and to be participating in the Global Ecosystems Partnership in Innovation and Cybersecurity.
“There is a growing understanding of the expertise here in Scotland on cluster management and the opportunity to build on a thriving cyber sector.
“Scotland truly is a global leader in this regard, and we look forward to sharing our insights and delivering benefits to our members.”