Wales awarded first cyber security Centre of Excellence

Cardiff University has been recognised as an Academic Centre of Excellence in Cyber Security Research by the National Cyber Security Centre

Cardiff University has been named as an Academic Centre of Excellence in Cyber Security Research by the UK’s National Cyber Security Centre (NCSC), the first institution in Wales to be awarded the status.

The award will allow academics to feed directly into the UK Government’s strategy of making the country more resilient to cyber-attacks.

As a Centre of Excellence, the University will nurture more young talent and foster a pipeline for the next generation of cyber security professionals.

Launched in 2016, the NCSC was set up as part of GCHQ to help protect the UK’s critical services from cyber attacks, manage major incidents, and improve the underlying security of the UK internet through technological improvement and advice to citizens and organisations.

Since then it is reported to have prevented thousands of attacks, provided vital support for the UK’s Armed Forces and managed hundreds of incidents.

Cardiff joins such institutions helping to support the NCSC’s mission as the Universities of Oxford, Cambridge, Bristol and University College London.

Cardiff will specifically focus on how artificial intelligence can be used to monitor, identify and ultimately tackle cyber-attacks.

“As the importance of cyber security continues to grow, it is great to see that Wales will play such a vital role in developing the skills and building the capability needed to fight cyber attacks whenever and wherever they occur.”

Prof. Pete Burnap, Principal Investigator of the Centre of Excellence and Professor of Data Science & Cybersecurity, said: “We are delighted to receive this recognition as it evidences our long track-record of research excellence in cyber security.

“We are proud to be the first Welsh university to be recognised by NCSC for our cyber research capability, and we hope to build on the impressive expertise that already exists across the region between academia, government and business.”

Secretary of State for Wales, Alun Cairns said: “Cardiff University’s recognition as an Academic Centre of Excellence in Cyber Security Research not only cements Wales’ position as a world class provider of higher education, but also highlights Wales’ ambition to lead the way in training cyber specialists.

“As the importance of cyber security continues to grow, it is great to see that Wales will play such a vital role in developing the skills and building the capability needed to fight cyber attacks whenever and wherever they occur.”