UK cyber firms get £700k to boost skills and employment

UK Cyber Cluster Collaboration established to support tech firms across the country

Posted 13 July 2021 by Christine Horton

The government is giving £700k to cybersecurity firms to help develop skills, and boost employment in the sector.

The funding from the Department for Digital, Culture, Media and Sport (DCMS) has been awarded to UK Cyber Cluster Collaboration (UKC3), a network of 20 regional clusters of cyber businesses, employers and local organisations which work together to boost the UK’s cybersecurity sector. 

The organisation was established to help cybersecurity businesses build partnerships and programmes to address issues such as the skills gap and a lack of business support.

DCMS said the fund will be used by the UKC3 to provide opportunities for “networking, knowledge sharing and funding to help develop skills and spur innovation.”

Minister for Digital Infrastructure Matt Warman announced the new funding today at industry event InfoSec. He launched the UK cybersecurity sector’s “magnificent growth”. The sector is currently worth £8.9 billion.

“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,” he said.

New national cyber strategy

UKC3 Chair Richard Yorke said there was an 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,” he said.

In a statement DCMS said the funding is part of the government’s efforts to develop the UK’s strength in cyber, as the UK builds back after the pandemic.

It added that “work is well underway” to develop a new national cyber strategy, which the government intends to publish later this year. 

Examples of cyber clusters across the UK include:

  • The CNI in Wales cyber security cluster helps organisations share intelligence and tackle cyber security challenges in Critical National Infrastructure (CNI)
  • Women in Cyber Wales Cluster provides networking opportunities and support to women working or hoping to work in the Welsh cyber sector
  • The ScotlandIS Cyber cluster represents and supports Scottish cyber security businesses and organisations, helping them to grow and collaborate 
  • The North West Cyber Security Cluster brings together cyber security and IT industry professionals and organisations across Cumbria, Lancashire, Manchester and Merseyside.
  • The South West Cyber Security Cluster is a ‘not for profit’ collaboration raising cyber security awareness for business protection, innovation and skills in the south west of England.
  • NI Cyber brings together cyber security companies based in Northern Ireland which are developing world-leading cyber security technologies.

A full list of cyber clusters can be found here