• New Deal backs Investment in NI’s Cyber Security
    left to right are: Professor Máire O’Neill, Regius Professor in Electronics and Computer Engineering and Principal Investigator, CSIT; Will Drury, Interim Executive Director Digital and Technologies at InnovateUK, UKRI; Minister of State for Northern Ireland, Steve Baker MP; Dr Kedar Pandya, EPSRC Director for Cross-Council Programmes; David Quinn, Executive Director of Queen’s University’s Institute of Electronics, Communications and Information Technology and President and Vice-Chancellor of Queen’s University Belfast, Professor Ian Greer. (Credit: Northern Ireland Office)

News & Views

New Deal backs Investment in NI’s Cyber Security

Mar 27 2023

An £18.9 million investment in NI’s cyber security industry announced by Northern Ireland (NI) Minister of State Steve Baker, MP, includes £11 million funding from the New Deal for NI to support the creation of a new Cyber-AI Hub at Queen’s University Belfast’s (QUB) Centre for Secure Information Technologies Queens (CSIT), leading to new jobs and supporting the UK government’s £2.6 billion national cyber strategy.

Bringing together academia and businesses CSIT will also provide for a doctoral training programme and masters bursaries, helping to deliver on the government’s pledge of 5000 cyber professionals in NI by 2030.

An additional £3.3 million from the Engineering and Physical Sciences Research Council (EPSRC) will consolidate the benefits achieved over the past 2 phases of UK Research and Innovation funding, enabling CSIT to continue its work to linking industry, academia and government, protecting citizens and businesses and driving economic growth.

The remaining £4.6 million from project partners also builds on NI’s impressive track record of attracting investment in its cyber security sector ahead of Belfast hosting the UK’s flagship cyber security event, CyberUK 2023, 19-20 April.

Minister of State for NI Steve Baker said: “This funding will help to create jobs and strengthen Northern Ireland’s economy and ensure that NI continues to lead the way in cyber security.

“We have world-class talent and expertise in Northern Ireland and the government is committed to developing cyber security professionals, here and across the UK.

The funding will have an immediate positive impact on NI’s cyber security sector, and with Belfast hosting the UK’s leading cyber security conference in April, I’m looking forward to seeing Northern Ireland’s deserved recognition as a global cyber security hub.

President and Vice-Chancellor of Queen’s University Belfast, Professor Ian Greer, said:

“This funding boost will have a hugely positive impact on the cyber security sector locally, nationally and globally.

“Investing in a Doctoral Training Programme is vital for the future of our society. We are investing in the skills of the next generation of leaders in cyber security, as well as progressing the Northern Ireland economy.

“Over the last 15 years, Queen’s University has helped to put Northern Ireland on the map for digital innovation. We are proud of the work that takes place through the Centre for Secure Information Technologies (CSIT) and are looking forward to further developing cutting-edge research through the broader Belfast Region City Deal-funded Global Innovation Institute.”

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