Digital Economy Minister Ed Vaizey has outlined a new voucher scheme designed specifically to protect small businesses from cyber attacks.
The cyber security innovation vouchers scheme will offer micro, small and medium sized businesses up to £5,000 for specialist advice to boost their cyber security and protect new business ideas and intellectual property. The scheme will be overseen by Innovate UK.
The vouchers also enable firms to access services from the UK cyber security industry and will help businesses to adopt Cyber Essentials, the Government’s flagship scheme to protect businesses online.
The launch of the scheme is part of a package of initiatives designed to increase the resilience of UK businesses to cyber-attacks. There’s also a new “Inspired Careers” online skills and career hub to tackle the UK’s skills shortage in cyber security. The UK cyber security industry is strong and growing – worth £17.6bn and employs over 40,000 people – but constantly needs to add more skilled people.
It is good to see that the Government recognises that SMEs are key to the IP supply chain and that it has a serious role to play in supporting the building of IT security at all levels of the UK business community. The voucher scheme is in itself a small gesture – but it is a step in the right direction.
Graham Carberry, Director at Livingstone, commented: “It is good to see that the Government recognises that SMEs are key to the IP supply chain and need to start to support the building of IT security at all levels of the UK business community. Whilst this is a small gesture, it is a step in the right direction.”