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Government to unite 50 young British cyber security experts from 13 UK universities

The Department for Business, Innovation and Skills (BIS) has teamed with the high-growth business support service, the Accelerator Network, to bring together 50 British youngsters specialising in cyber security.
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The group will be selected from from 13 universities across the UK, which the Academic Centres of Excellence have recognised for cybersecurity research, and will be united in June for a three-day hackathon called the Cyber Agile Development Challenge.

During the period, candidates will collaborate for the benefit of businesses by creating ideas to tackle issues that companies and infrastructure providers are faced with. Mentors will lead tutorials and provide advice over the three days, encouraging participants to develop commercial products and apps for real security problems.

Ian Merricks, chair of The Accelerator Network, said: “Cyber security is the number one threat facing UK businesses and critical infrastructure providers. The real issue is that countermeasures are often developed by large teams bound by out-dated organisational structures, whereas attackers work together in disparate more flexible collectives. 

“We hope this event will help create a more informal ideas-driven approach to problem solving.  The Accelerator Network is delighted to be working with BIS to deliver such an event.”

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“Protecting and promoting the UK’s digital economy is a key part of the government’s long-term economic plan, so it’s crucial we have the skills to do this now and in the future,” said Ed Vaizey, minister for the digital economy.

“I’m pleased that the Department for Business is supporting the Agile Innovation hackathon, which will be a fantastic way of developing new talent and ensuring government and industry can tackle the cyber security challenges of the future.”

A pitch will follow the hackathon, calling on the teams to showcase their creations to partners and investors. Those interested in more information or attending the pitch event can find details at http://theacceleratornetwork.com/

In related pitch news, Richard Branson and Virgin Media Business have launched a £1m campaign with LinkedIn, calling upon startups and entrepreneurs to present to the British businessman.

Branson, said: “Pitch to Rich is a brilliant opportunity for UK businesses to make their mark on a global stage. If you think your business has great potential, then enter Pitch to Rich today, as you never know where it may lead you.”

Image via Shutterstock.

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Zen Terrelonge

Zen Terrelonge is the deputy editor of Real Business, specialising in media, innovation, technology and the digital sector. A media professional with eight years worth of experience he has worked for both startup and established publications.

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