The UK Government has published its new National Cyber Strategy which sets out how the UK will solidify its position as a global cyber power.

This is the first major milestone following the publication of the Government’s Integrated Review earlier this year and includes £2.6 billion of funding, in addition to further funding for the National Cyber Force.

The cyber strategy builds on the significant progress made on cyber security over the last five years which has seen the UK cyber security sector grow rapidly, with over 1,400 businesses generating revenues of £8.9 billion last year, supporting 46,700 skilled jobs, and attracting significant overseas investment. 

The Cyber Strategy outlines five key strategic pillars encompassing all Government interventions and support for the sector, both in terms of National Security priorities and economic prosperity and nurturing the cyber eco-system:

  1. Strengthening the UK cyber ecosystem
  2. Building a resilient and prosperous digital UK
  3. Taking the lead in the technologies vital to cyber power
  4. Advancing UK global leadership and influence
  5. Detecting, disrupting and deterring adversaries

Through the cyber strategy, the Government is calling on all parts of society to play their part in reinforcing the UK’s economic and strategic strengths in cyberspace – this means more diversity in the workforce, levelling up the cyber sector across all UK regions, expanding our offensive and defensive cyber capabilities and prioritising cyber security in the workplace, boardrooms and digital supply chains.

Other key announcements include:

  • “Cyber Explorers”, a new online training platform which will teach young people cyber skills in classrooms.
  • Approval by the Queen of a new “Royal Charter” for the UK Cyber Security Council, which will help improve cyber careers and bring the cyber workforce into line with other professional occupations like engineering.
  • A reorientation of growth and skills programmes away from large, often London-based initiatives to a regionally delivered model which will mean more jobs and better opportunities for people across the U, including funding for Cyber Runway.
  • The establishment of the new National Cyber Advisory Board (NCAB) which will bring together senior leaders from the private and third sectors to challenge, support and inform the Government’s approach to cyber – further strengthening the public-private partnership.
  • The creation of a National Laboratory for Operational Technology Security which will bring Government, industry and academia together to make sure that the UK economy is built on the highest level of cyber resilience. 
  • Further support will also be made available to help regional firms to become world class exporters including through a new online “Export Faculty” Hub for SMEs in the defence and security sector.

The cyber strategy also outlines Government’s plan to keep citizens safe across the cyber domain by:

  • Bolstering law enforcement with significant funding so that they can ramp up their targeting of criminals;
  • Increasing investment in the National Cyber Force which represents the UK’s offensive capability to counter, disrupt, degrade and contest those who would do harm to the UK and its allies; 
  • Expanding GCHQ’s National Cyber Security Centre’s research capabilities, including the new applied research hub in Manchester; 
  • Implementing the Product Security and Telecommunications Infrastructure Bill to enforce minimum security standards in all new consumer smart products; and
  • Investing in public sector cyber security to ensure that key public services remain resilient to evolving threats and can continue to deliver for citizens who need them.

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