New gov initiative aims to give small security businesses a boost

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The UK needs more cybersecurity businesses and the UK government is taking steps to make that happen.

As reported by IT Pro, the government has kickstarted the Cyber Runway program, the goal of which is to support at least 160 organizations in the cybersecurity industry.

The program was developed by the Department for Digital, Culture, Media and Sport (DCMS), while Plexal, the innovation center and coworking space company, will be charged with bringing it to life. CyLon, Deloitte, and the Centre for Secure Information Technologies (CSIT) are also major partners.

The program will be split into three stages, allowing businesses and startups in different stages of their lives to participate. The first aims to support entrepreneurs who wish to turn their ideas into business models, the second one is for young start-ups in need of support, while the third is for already established businesses looking to scale.

Addressing the skills gap

According to the DCMS, the cybersecurity industry is hugely successful in the UK, with revenues increasing by 7% in the last financial year alone. The number of companies that serve the industry grew by more than a fifth (21 percent) in the same period, with the sector now being valued at more than $12.3 billion.

However, with most businesses pivoting to digital-first operating models due to Covid-19, the skills gap being as wide as ever and compliance remaining a challenge, it’s no wonder the UK government is looking to strengthen further.

The program will seek to support businesses “from a diverse range of backgrounds”, it was said. And the UK government wants to see more “underrepresented groups” in the country’s cybersecurity industry. 

An expression of interest in the program can be submitted via this link.

Sead is a seasoned freelance journalist based in Sarajevo, Bosnia and Herzegovina. He writes about IT (cloud, IoT, 5G, VPN) and cybersecurity (ransomware, data breaches, laws and regulations). In his career, spanning more than a decade, he’s written for numerous media outlets, including Al Jazeera Balkans. He’s also held several modules on content writing for Represent Communications.