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John Gilbert: Where was the Budget Update on Cyber Security Strategy?

This week’s Budget Announcement was quite light on technology and especially so on the UK’s cyber crime capabilities.

Authentication expert John Gilbert, General Manager UK of Yubico, has commented on the impact of this on the tech and cyber security landscape. Yubico invented the world’s first physical security key and John helps companies like Google to secure 85,000+ of its employees against online fraud, platforms like Gov.uk to help protect gateways against cyber criminals, and within the UK government and defence departments to secure their users.

“With the rise in cybercrime accelerated by the pandemic, I’m surprised at the absence of any information on last year’s announcement of £1.5bn to strengthen the UK’s cyber crime fighting capabilities – or even any updates as to whether this fund will be bolstered. However, as the Government’s current National Cyber Security Strategy runs out this year, I hope to see a cyber security specific budget update later this year.

In the meantime, the UK’s private businesses must continue to play their part, investing in new technologies and working on privately funded initiatives to ensure British businesses and citizens receive the greatest possible defence against today’s increasingly sophisticated cyber attacks.

“The Government clearly understands the risk that Brexit-fuelled uncertainty could pose to the competitiveness of British business – both domestically and abroad.  As such, it is great to see the UK technology sector playing a central role in the plan for growth, with adequate support promised in today’s Budget. We’re in good company here, as countries such as Sweden understand the value of supporting their homegrown operations, with a healthy ecosystem and monetary assistance to inspire entrepreneurialism and bring new technologies to market. Technology can rarely be considered without mention of the required digital skills to maximise ROI, so this much-needed support for home grown skills development, as well as fast-track visas to diversify the sector’s talent pool, is welcomed.”