Innovate UK announce £6 million funding to improve cyber security in the Internet of Things


Innovate UK have announced up to £6 million funding to support new ideas that can help keep connected devices and applications safe and secure.

The competition will develop new products and services that tackle cyber security in the Internet of Things.

Connected devices and sensors in our homes and workplaces – known as the Internet of Things (IoT) – offer huge potential for improving how we live and move around. We can measure health data, travel habits and energy use, predict demand for public services and support planning and management of critical national infrastructure.

But as more devices become connected, the more vulnerable they are to sophisticated cyber security threats. This becomes even more important as critical applications for the IoT emerge.

Innovate UK has up to £6 million to invest in organisations with ideas that address industry-focused cyber security-related challenges.

The investment forms part of the UK Research and Innovation Strategic Priorities Fund, which supports the highest priorities identified by researchers and businesses.

It is part of a set of measures by UK government to build increased security and protections into digital devices and online services. As well as this programme, this includes an up to £70 million investment through the Industrial Strategy Challenge Fund to tackle digital security by design.

More resilient, intelligent systems

The competition aims to join up the UK’s research base with industry to transfer knowledge and develop new products and services that tackle cyber security in the IoT.

Projects should include artificial intelligence or machine learning and have a clear plan for commercialisation.

They should focus on at least one of the following:

  • Operational resilience technologies that can protect and recover data.

  • Intelligent control systems for industry, commercial and public sector buildings.

  • Protection of people living in digital homes and their smart systems.

Projects could also look at complementary technologies, such as distributed ledger technologies that support the sharing of data across multiple locations, or 5G mobile networks.

Competition information

  • The competition opens on 18 February 2019 and the deadline for applications is at midday on 1 May 2019.

  • UK-based businesses of any size can lead a project, working with other businesses, research organisations, public sector organisations or charities. Collaboration should involve at least one academic partner and one small or medium-sized enterprise.

  • Businesses could receive up to 70% of their project costs.

  • Total eligible project costs can be between £2.5 million and £4 million.

  • Projects must start by 1 December 2019 and can last between 18 and 24 months.

  • Projects that pass the written application stage will be invited to an interview panel between 1 and 5 July 2019 to present their ideas.

Find out more about the competition and apply

Originally published 4 February 2019 on the GOV.UK website.