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GCHQ Ties Up With Startups For UK Cybersecurity

GCHQ Cyber Accelerator officially launched with seven startups, which will work closely with the UK intelligence agency.

GCHQ Cyber Accelerator, a British government scheme in which seven cybersecurity startups will work alongside Government Communications Headquarters (GCHQ), was launched yesterday to protect the country against cyberattacks, BBC News reports. These startups, located in Cheltenham and specializing in different techniques to counter cyberattacks, are CounterCraft, Cyberowl, Cybersmart, FutureScaper, Spherical Defence, StatusToday, and Verimuchme.

The companies were each given a £5,000 grant. They will work closely with GCHQ and have access to its staff and government tenders, BBC adds.

"What GCHQ and the government recognize is that it's no longer just the big companies where you will find innovative ideas on cybersecurity," says cybersecurity expert Prof Alan Woodward of the University of Surrey.

Prof Anthony Glees, director of the Buckingham University Centre for Security and Intelligence Studies, views the tie-up as a "twin-edged sword" because it would require GCHQ to manage the risks of exposing itself to outside companies.

GCHQ is mindful of the risks, says the agency's spokesperson, adding "All of the companies have been selected through a rigorous competition and have been subjected to appropriate background checks."

Read details on BBC News.