British PM pledges £800m cybersurveillance spend

Some of it on one aircraft

Surveillance Ahoy

David Cameron, the British Prime Minister, has committed to spend £800 million on cyber defence technology and a surveillance aircraft.

Writing in the Telegraph, he said that is part of a plan to get the latest in cyber warface, unmanned, aircraft technology and Special Forces capability.

It is likely though that a signifcant portion of that budget will be allocated to the surveillance aircraft which is likely to be the successor to the Sentinel R1 and associated ground components.

Incidentally, the total cost, in 1999, of the ASTOR (airborne stand-off radar) system (which comprised of five planes, eight stations and other equipments) was also about £800 million (more with inflation).

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The British PM added in his column "Having a modern, technological, advanced and flexible armed forces to protect and advance these interests is not national vanity – it is national necessity."

He didn't specify exactly how the money was going to be spent or whether that was previously earmarked budget being brought forward.

Cameron's announcement comes as governments worldwide are coming under attack for eroding civil liberties and apparently looking to circumvent data privacy laws.