Government invests £10 million to help make future technologies more secure


The government will provide £10 million over four years to develop groundbreaking cyber security technologies, Digital Secretary Oliver Dowden announced at London Tech Week Connects.

Nine grant winners have been revealed as the latest recipients in the government’s Digital Security by Design programme, which aims to help the tech infrastructure of UK organisations and digital devices be more resilient to cyber attacks.

The winning research teams that will share the £10 million investment include the University of Southampton’s HD-Sec solution, which aims to speed up the process and reduce errors and security vulnerabilities in software design that could have been exploited by hackers.

The University of Glasgow-led AppControl will also receive a share of the fund to leverage state-of-the-art microprocessors, developed earlier in the programme, to make sure vital systems that could be used in cars, medical robots or nuclear power plants remain digitally secure.

And the University of Birmingham has been awarded funding for leading the digital solution CAP-TEE, which will use prototype microchips to protect systems that shield sensitive, personal data from hackers.

The Digital Security by Design programme, launched last year, has the potential to prevent hackers from remotely taking control of digital systems such as autonomous cars, personal computers or smart home security systems as well as cyber attacks and data breaches, meaning people and online businesses are better protected.

Almost half of businesses (46 per cent) and more than a quarter of charities (26 per cent) have reported experiencing cyber security breaches or attacks in the last 12 months, according to the Cyber Security Breaches Survey 2020. The report estimates the average cost of a cyber attack on a medium or large-sized business has increased to £5,220.