35 cyber startups join largest UK government-backed accelerator

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35 startups, SMEs, and scaleups are joining the Cyber Runway accelerator programme, taking on challenges like ransomware, zero-day attacks, and secure authentication.

The programme has been designed to strengthen the UK’s cyber ecosystem and accelerate the growth of a new generation of breakthrough cyber startups to improve national security, stimulate innovation and drive economic growth. It’s part of the government’s mission of making the UK a responsible and democratic cyber power, as laid out in the National Cyber Strategy 2022.

Currently in its second year, Cyber Runway is the largest government-backed cyber startup accelerator in the country. Funded by the Department for Digital, Culture, Media and Sport, it’s run by Plexal, Deloitte, and the Centre for Secure Information Technologies (CSIT).

The 2022 Cyber Runway cohort is set to take on challenges like ransomware, zero-day attacks, secure authentication, incident response, and improving cyber awareness. Its members include CyberMind, which is using AI to help cyber workers deal with their mental health, and Worldr, which secures employee data through zero-trust architectures.

“We are backing businesses on the frontline defending the UK against cyber threats,” said cyber minister Julia Lopez. “Our investment in these innovative British startups helps create skilled jobs and a more diverse workforce, which strengthens our national security as well as our booming tech industry."


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45% of the programme’s members are based outside of London and the South East of England. 65% have women in their leadership teams and 28% are run by founders from black, ethnic or minority backgrounds. Cyber Runway will also be delivered in person and virtually to maximise its nationwide reach.

Startups are set to benefit from business masterclasses, mentoring and engineering support from CSIT, technical product development support, and opportunities to connect with international cyber hubs. They will also be able to attend regional events and connect to investors and corporations to fuel growth.

Applications for the second cohort opened on 5 July 2022, after the first round saw 107 entrepreneurs benefit from the initiative. Cyber Runway said that up to 100 more startups would be accepted into the programme which will run over the course of six months.

Zach Marzouk

Zach Marzouk is a former ITPro, CloudPro, and ChannelPro staff writer, covering topics like security, privacy, worker rights, and startups, primarily in the Asia Pacific and the US regions. Zach joined ITPro in 2017 where he was introduced to the world of B2B technology as a junior staff writer, before he returned to Argentina in 2018, working in communications and as a copywriter. In 2021, he made his way back to ITPro as a staff writer during the pandemic, before joining the world of freelance in 2022.