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Government launches new cyber security export strategy

The government has unveiled a new strategy intended to make it easier for British cyber security firms to sell their products and services overseas.

On Monday, International Trade Secretary Liam Fox revealed the government’s new Cyber Security Export Strategy, which is aimed at promoting and strengthening the UK’s defence capabilities.

The strategy will attempt to thwart mounting cyber attacks against businesses in the UK and Nato countries. The government said it will “ensure they have the best security possible”.

Through the framework, Britain’s 800 cyber security companies will be able to “win contracts that provide security for high profile international buyers and protect networks across the world”.

In 2016, British cyber security exports reached £1.5 billion. However, that is a tiny fraction of total global spending on IT security. 

Today’s announcement forms part of the wider National Cyber Security Strategy, which has so far ploughed more than £1.9 billion of investment into the sector.

Fox said that the strategy is crucial in ensuring that the UK and its allies can fight a “diverse range of threats from hostile state actors”.

He added: ” It is vital that we improve our cyber capabilities, which are crucial for national security and prosperity.

“The strategy I am publishing today will support UK companies to export our world-leading cyber security expertise, which will help strengthen our capabilities, and protect our country and our allies from those who wish us harm.”

Over the past few months, he continued, the government has been working directly with the cyber security industry to develop “export control regimes that will safeguard human rights”.

The strategy is also backed by ADS, the UK’s official security sector trade association. The organisation said it will “help the UK’s world-leading cyber security companies reach new markets and continue to grow”.

Paul Everitt, chief executive of ADS, said: “Public and private organisations in the UK and around the world are facing rapidly evolving cyber security threats.

“In the UK we have a diverse range of companies able to provide world-leading expertise and innovation to combat these threats.

“The UK’s cyber security exports are already worth £1.5bn a year and we expect this area of activity to continue offering the strongest export growth in the security sector in the years ahead.

“This new strategy announced today can help the sector continue to grow, make a greater contribution to national prosperity, and protect the UK and our allies from threats in cyberspace.”

 

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