Cameron announces £800 million investment in waging cyber warfare

Prime minister David Cameron has announced that £1.1 billion will be spent through the armed forces to fight new threats, with most of the money being used to wage cyber warfare.

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Prime minister David Cameron has announced that £1.1 billion will be spent through the armed forces to fight new threats, with most of the money being used to wage cyber warfare.

The money includes £800 million of investment in a new "Intelligence, Surveillance, Target Acquisition and Reconnaissance package", and investments of £300 million on existing capabilities, including a new E-Scan radar for the Typhoon fighter and the purchase of ice patrol ship HMS Protector.

The £1.1 billion of spending comes after the Ministry of Defence has slashed spending from other areas of the armed forces, including reducing the number troops to just over 80,000. The cyber warfare spending will include developing new systems to aid special forces that can be quickly deployed anywhere in the world, instead of concentrating on financing large armies that can wage major land battles.

Making the announcement at this week's Farnborough Air Show, Cameron also said a UK Defence Solutions Centre in Farnborough would be established to bring together industry, with support from government, to develop the "new defence technologies of the future" and "identify future market opportunities". The global defence market is expected to be worth around £82 billion a year to 2022.

In addition, he announced a £4 million UK Centre for Maritime Intelligent Systems based in Portsmouth. Government, industry and the Local Enterprise Partnership will bring together academics, scientists, engineers and naval specialists to develop "cutting-edge technology for use in autonomous unmanned boats, submarines or other vessels".

A new Defence Apprenticeship Trailblazer will also be used attract new graduates to the industry as well as up-skilling the existing workforce. This Trailblazer will develop a new Masters level standard in Advanced Systems Engineering.

Cameron said: "Having modern, technologically advanced and flexible armed forces to protect us and our interests is vital. Because of the difficult decisions we have taken to tackle the deficit we are able to make these vital investments in our defence capabilities."

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