New report reveals UK as world leader in online safety innovation

Reports | Technology

The UK’s rapidly-growing safety tech sector is helping make the online world safer for millions of people, a report published today shows.

The independent study, ‘Safer technology, safer users: The UK as a world leader in Safety Tech’, highlights significant growth within the sector, with the number of dedicated online safety firms doubling in the last five years and investment increasing more than eight-fold in 2019, making it a record year.

It shows there are almost two thousand people working in more than 70 companies across the UK, including in London, Leeds, Cambridge and Edinburgh.

Leading UK firm Crisp, based in Leeds, has created new technology that is used to detect and remove harmful content from social media and online games, contributing to the safety of an estimated two billion worldwide users each day. While London-based SuperAwesome helps more than 300 of the world’s top brands ensure their online engagements with children meet strict data privacy requirements.

The research, carried out between September 2019 and March 2020, comes as the government launches a Safety Tech Innovation Network, the world’s first forum for safety tech providers to collaborate and showcase their work, alongside a scheme to boost exports.

Minister for Digital and Culture, Caroline Dinenage, said: “We are all spending more time online during the pandemic and this new report shows the value the safety tech sector could add as we look to power growth out of it. Its innovative products, many of which are developed in towns and cities across the country, are being used globally to help companies make their online platforms safer. The government is leading the world, developing online harms laws and it’s great to see our brilliant British tech industry is part of the solution.”

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