Development of the Digital Security by Design Software Ecosystem

UK registered SMEs can apply for a share of up to £1.5m for fast-start short-term projects. Funding is to investigate requirements for adoption of Digital Security by Design (DSbD) technologies across the software development ecosystem.

Opportunity Details


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Your project’s total eligible costs must be between £40,000 and £80,000. This can be fully funded as a de minimis grant.


Innovate UK

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Innovate UK, part of UK Research and Innovation, will invest up to £1.5 million to support SMEs working alone in software development to explore and investigate the requirements, dependencies and range of potential complexities associated with the adoption of the Digital Security by Design (DSbD) technologies.

The aim of the competition is to enable the growth of the software ecosystem that will be crucial for the successful adoption of DSbD technologies.

Your project

Your project must:

  • have total eligible costs between £40,000 and £80,000
  • be no longer than 6 months in duration
  • start on or after 1 April 2021
  • end by 30 September 2021

Lead organisation

Your organisation must:

  • be a UK registered SME
  • carry out its project work in the UK
  • intend to exploit the results from or in the UK

This competition aims to enable the growth of the software ecosystem that will be crucial for the successful adoption of DSbD technologies.

Your proposal must focus on detailed investigation of a problem framed around a system and software stack concept. This could lead to a subsequent implementation that will benefit from the use of DSbD technologies.

Your proposal must:

  • describe your use case or cases and related scenarios, and explain how your area of detailed investigation will enable a full software stack approach to increased security
  • show how DSbD technologies will be incorporated into your detailed investigation work
  • frame your solution under investigation in the context of a full software stack and describe how your work will address identified technical challenges, requirements, dependencies and related complexities
  • explain how you will use the available Fixed Virtual Platform (FVP) model to inform your detailed investigation, or if you choose not to use it, explain your rationale and justify your decision
  • explain how DSbD security will enhance your approach to security, qualitatively and quantitatively, and how you will confirm if it is a viable way forward
  • identify and describe how you plan to overcome any dependence on other technology, ecosystem or business requirement for the transition and adoption of your innovation

You will have access to DSbD’s Morello Platform Model. This is a software-based, Fixed Virtual Platform (FVP) model representation of the DSbD technology platform prototype hardware-based platform. The model will initially be capable of building and running nano Android kernel (reduced headless) and user-space examples.

You will have access to the evolving support software in terms of toolchain, libraries, kernel development and user-space components. You can find additional details and download links in the public software releases and associated documentation.

We are looking to fund a portfolio of projects, featuring a mix of detailed investigation, use cases and technological approaches.

This competition is open to investigation of multiple approaches to applying DSbD security for fine-grained memory protection or software compartmentalisation.

Using a full software stack approach, projects can focus on one or more of the following aspects without intending to be an exhaustive list:

  • software frameworks
  • tooling
  • development environments
  • operating systems
  • language runtimes
  • libraries and ancillary support
  • middleware

An online briefing will be held at 11am on 27th November: click here to register.


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