Tech startups will have the chance to join the U.K.’s cybersecurity experts in their mission to keep the country safe online thanks to a new initiative.
The National Cyber Security Centre (NCSC) – a part of GCHQ – has formally opened applications for NCSC for Startups, where tech companies can apply to help develop products to defend critical areas of the economy and society.
Tech innovators which are accepted onto the program, from early-stage startups to established scaleups, will develop and pilot technology to protect the country from malicious activity, including phishing and ransomware attacks.
NCSC for Startups is the successor to the NCSC Cyber Accelerator, a program which helped more than 40 tech companies raise in excess of £100m in external investments.
While the Cyber Accelerator program involved startups taking part in 10-week program at set times during the year, NCSC for Startups will involve the continual onboarding of companies throughout the year as they apply to work on specific projects. This will create the potential for a greater number of collaborations than ever before.
NCSC for Startups is a collaboration between the NCSC and Plexal, the innovation center. The program will be supported by CyNam.
Successful applicants will be onboarded throughout the year, where they will work from the NCSC for Startups HQ in Cheltenham as well as remotely. They will also be eligible to apply for funding to help them develop their ideas.
The chosen companies will receive direct support from Plexal’s cyber innovation team and leading experts from the NCSC and GCHQ. Startups will also gain access to wider technical and commercial opportunities with Plexal’s industry partners across the U.K.’s cybersecurity ecosystem. Startups will keep all intellectual property and equity created during the program.