Forecasts by the Department of Digital, Culture, Media and Sport (DCMS) expect that the average UK household contains fifteen consumer Internet of Things (IoT) or ‘smart’ devices. However, a significant proportion of these devices lack basic cyber security provisions. As smart devices become an increasingly common feature of people’s lives, consumers need to have confidence in the many smart devices they buy and use.
This programme aims to catalyse the development and uptake of industry-led assurance schemes for consumer IoT products. This can be achieved in a number of ways, including:
- Increasing the number of consumer IoT products that undergo formal security assessment.
- Ensuring that the assurance schemes available are of a high quality.
- Ensuring that schemes are accessible and affordable to all manufacturers, including start-ups and SMEs. Self-assessment as well as external assurance should be an option for manufacturers.
An assurance scheme can achieve these objectives in a number of ways and DCMS is open to different proposals. For example, it welcomes schemes that cover the full spectrum of IoT and those that are sector-specific (eg just for children’s toys, or just for smart TVs). Funding issued under this programme can be used to modify existing assurance schemes or to set up new ones.
There is £400,000 available in total. Applicants can bid for a grant worth £170,000 at a maximum.
This fund is open to individual companies, or a consortium of organisations that can deliver the intended grant objectives in the United Kingdom. Bidding organisations must have at least some experience in designing and/or operating a consumer product assurance scheme or a cyber security assurance scheme. This includes either experience with product assurance and/or self-assessment.
The deadline for applications is 30 June 2020.
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