Consortium gets $80 million to oversee Canadian Cyber Security Innovation Network

Ottawa is putting up to C$80 million over four years into a group called the National Cybersecurity Consortium (NCC) to oversee the fledgling Cyber Security Innovation Network (CSIN)’s goal of boosting this country’s academic research, application and hardware developers as well as training more cybersecurity workers.

The money will help CSIN enhance cybersecurity research and development, increase commercialization and develop skilled IT talent, the government said this morning.

“This funding will help foster a strong national cyber security ecosystem in Canada and position the country as a global leader in cyber security,” the government said in a statement.

“By encouraging partnerships between academia and industry, the network will help address the shortage of cyber security specialists. And by leveraging Canada’s highly skilled workforce, world-class universities and growing cyber security industry, CSIN will support Canada’s leadership in cyber security.”

The National Cybersecurity Consortium is a federally-incorporated not-for-profit founded in 2020 by five Canadian universities (Concordia University, Ryerson University, University of Calgary, University of New Brunswick, and University of Waterloo). Its goal is to work with the public and private sectors to lead world-class cybersecurity innovation and talent development.

Hopefully, NCC says, cutting-edge intellectual property will be generated by Canadian cybersecurity researchers, leading to commercialized products and services.

Organizations that want to work with the CSIN can contact the NCC directly.

The network will be required to provide a 1:1 cost-matching of the federal contribution, for an additional $80 million over four years, to be provided in the form of a combination of cash and/or in-kind contributions. The matching contributions will be expected to come from a combination of non-federal government partners (e.g., private sector, provincial/territorial/municipal governments, and others, such as not-for-profit organizations and Canadian post-secondary institutions).

“Demands on the digital economy continue to rapidly grow, and cyber security is an ever-increasing concern for Canadians and Canadian businesses,” Minister of Innovation, Science and Industry François-Philippe Champagne said in a statement. “That’s why it is vital to support and invest in a strong, secure and resilient Canadian cyber ecosystem. Through this investment, the Cyber Security Innovation Network will not only help drive Canada’s prosperity, security and innovation but also help build a nation of cyber security trailblazers.”

“We believe that under the NCC’s leadership, CSIN will become a major force for the advancement of cybersecurity innovation in Canada,” the consortium’s executive team said in a statement. “As a nation-wide network, CSIN is poised to meaningfully advance cybersecurity across all sectors and in all regions of Canada. CSIN opens a new chapter of collaborative innovation in Canadian cybersecurity, and we are looking forward to working closely with all stakeholders as we build CSIN over the months ahead.”

The government news release said that according to Statistics Canada, the Canadian cybersecurity industry contributed over $2.3 billion in GDP and 22,500 jobs to the Canadian economy in 2018.

Canadian businesses reported spending $7 billion in 2019 to prevent, detect and recover from cyber security incidents, the government added.

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Howard Solomon
Howard Solomon
Currently a freelance writer, I'm the former editor of and Computing Canada. An IT journalist since 1997, I've written for several of ITWC's sister publications including and Computer Dealer News. Before that I was a staff reporter at the Calgary Herald and the Brampton (Ont.) Daily Times. I can be reached at hsolomon [@]

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