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Bletchley Park To Host ‘Codebreakers’ Cybersecurity School

Tom Jowitt is a leading British tech freelance and long standing contributor to TechWeek Europe

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Winston Churchill’s top secret World War two installation to teach cybersecurity skills to next generation

Bletchley Park could become host a training college that will teach the next generation of youngsters much needed cybersecurity skills.

The training college would be housed within renovated historic buildings at the site, to provide “world-class facilities, on the country’s most iconic site for UK cryptography and codebreaking”.

The central thrust behind the National College of Cyber Security, which would open in the Autumn of 2018, is to teach cyber security skills to 16-19 year olds with no fees involved for the first 500 students.

Children, kids, education, censorship © alphaspirit, Shutterstock 2014

Cyber school

The three year curriculum will reportedly be mostly (40 percent) made up of cyber security lessons taught by experts in the field, alongside the subjects of maths, physics, and computer science.

The driver is behind the scheme is a non-profit group called Qufaro, which has been established by Cyber Security Challenge UK, The National Museum of Computing and BT Security.

It is reported that the college would be housed within G-Block, built in 1943 on the Bletchley Park site, but the building is currently in a sorry state of repair and will need £5 million spent in order to renovate it.

“Through initiatives such as the national college, we can effectively combine the principles of heritage, education and innovation for which everything on this site stands,” Margaret Sale, Qufaro’s non-executive director and founding member of the Bletchley Park Trust and the National Museum of Computing, told The  Guardian.

“Previous generations are deeply proud of their contributions at Bletchley Park. I am keen to see what the next cadre will achieve,” said Sale.

Skills Shortage

The UK needs more people with cyber security skills to tackle the growing threats the nation faces.

To help in this regard, earlier this month 42 amateur cyber security enthusiasts competed in a Cyber Security Challenge UK event in East London, which saw the contestants attempt to defend a fictional global energy firm from cyber attacks, launched externally and internally.

And the government has already pledged to invest £1.9 billion in boosting the UK’s cyber security defences and to develop cyber attack capabilities that would allow it to fight back if struck by a foreign adversary.

Chancellor Phillip Hammond said a strategy centred on the principles of defend, deter and develop would protect the country from outside threats, businesses from cyber crime and allow the UK to become a leader in the development of innovative technologies like the Internet of Things (IoT) and artificial intelligence (AI).

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