New plans to boost security of consumer smart devices

The government has launched a £400,000 funding pot for innovators to design schemes to boost the security of internet connected devices. Particularly, the programme aims to support the market of assurance schemes for Internet of Things (IoT) devices. These assurance schemes would demonstrate that a device has undergone independent testing or a robust self-assessment process to ensure consumers are able to make security-conscious purchasing decisions.

With the sales of connected devices on the rise, research suggests that there will be 75bn internet connected devices in our homes by 2025. Consequently, competitions such as this one help retailers ensure that they are stocking secure internet connected devices, and will mean that manufacturers can highlight that they have adhered to the Government’s Code of Practice.

These grants follow an announcement earlier this year that all consumer smart devices in the UK will have to adhere to the following three security requirements:

  1. Device passwords must be unique and not resettable to a universal factory setting.
  2. Manufacturers must provide a public point of contact so anyone can report a vulnerability.
  3. Manufacturers must state the minimum length of time for which a device will receive security updates.

Eligible organisations are encouraged to apply for grant funding. Please find the eligibility criteria and instructions here. All applications are due by 30 June.

Please note that the funding available through this programme is time-limited and must conclude by 31 March 2021. Due to state aid considerations, funding is limited to £170k per organisation or consortium.

If you have any questions about the application process, please do not hesitate to contact the Secure by Design team at securebydesign@culture.gov.uk

  • Sam Wyatt

    Sam Wyatt

    Programme Manager | Defence and Cyber Security
    T 020 7331 2169
  • Dan Patefield

    Dan Patefield

    Head of Programme | Cyber and National Security
    T 020 7331 2165

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