UK’s cyber security industry worth £8.3bn, report shows

Maria Nikolova

The UK’s cyber security sector is now worth an estimated £8.3 billion, with total revenues in the sector up 46% from £5.7 billion in 2017.

Ipsos MORI, in conjunction with Perspective Economics, the Centre for Secure Information Technologies (CSIT) at Queen’s University Belfast, and Professor Steven Furnell (University of Plymouth) were commissioned by the Department for Digital, Culture, Media and Sport (DCMS) in January 2019 to undertake an updated analysis of the UK’s cyber security sector.

The analysis builds upon the baseline UK Cyber Security Sectoral Analysis (published in October 2018) that provided an estimate of the size and scale of the UK’s cyber security industry. This provided a baseline (using 2015/16 financial data) for the number of UK cyber security companies; the cyber security sector’s contribution to the UK economy (through revenue and GVA); the number of personnel employed in the cyber security sector; and an overview of the products and services offered by these firms.

The analysis shows the UK’s cyber security industry is now worth an estimated £8.3 billion, with total revenues in the sector up 46% from £5.7 billion in 2017.

The report also reveals that the number of active cyber security firms in the UK has increased 44%, up from 846 in 2017, to over 1,200 at year-end 2019. This growth is the equivalent to a new cyber security business being set up in the UK every week.

Within the survey of cyber security companies, businesses were asked whether the products and services they offered were provided to any particular sectors. Just under a third (32%) of respondents noted that they did not have (or were not aware of) a sector focus.

For those businesses which could segment their main customers by sector, the largest customer segments were the Public Sector (30%) and ‘Financial or Insurance Activities’ (30% of businesses) followed by broader Professional, Scientific or Technical Activities providers (18%), as well as other IT or Communication firms (13%).

Over the last four years (2016-19), total investment identified within the cyber security sector has exceeded £1.1 billion, demonstrating how confidence has grown in the industry. Last year was a record one for the sector with more than £348 million of investment.

There are now approximately 43,000 full time employees working in the cyber security sector, up 37% from 2017.

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