NCSC for Startups

NCSC For Startups

Delivering the NCSC mission to make the UK the safest place to live and work online 

Cyber Runway By Plexal Logo

Plexal is the innovation delivery partner for the National Cyber Security Centre (NCSC)

The NCSC For Startups programme looks for innovators to develop technology to solve the UK Government’s most pressing national security challenges.

3 month accelerator

NCSC For Startups is helping innovators develop products and technology with the government to solve challenges that are mission-critical to society and our economy. We help startups develop their solutions, adapt their current technology to a new cyber challenge set by the NCSC and then they pilot their solutions.

Throughout the three month intensive programme, startups benefit from support with product development and investment and to marketing, connections to private sector opportunities. It will involve spending time in Cheltenham – home to GCHQ and the NCSC – to create new cyber connections.


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Build solutions with the NCSC and Plexal

You’ll get advice and expert-delivered workshops to help you refine, test and prove your solution.

Business support

Business support

A community of mentors and business leaders are on hand to support you. From marketing to commercialisation strategy, you’ll have 1:1 support throughout.

Pilot technology

Pilot your technology

Chosen startups will work on pilots with our industry and government partners.



Each startup can apply for funding to work on specific projects.


Community and events

Startups will be connected to a UK-wide ecosystem of startups, investors, security experts, business leaders and policymakers.


Keep your IP

The NCSC, Plexal and our partners won’t take any equity or IP from startups. It’s yours to keep.


We’re inviting any startup with technology-led solutions that meet our challenge areas to apply. 

You don’t have to call yourself a cybersecurity company to get involved.  

We can work with you to adapt it to a new capability related to cybersecurity. 

NCSC For Startups is open to startups at all stages, from pre-Series A and beyond. 

NCSC Criteria

Meet the current intake

Cynalytica specialises in industrial control system (ICS), supervisory control and data acquisition (SCADA) and operational technology (OT) security. The business offers all-sources communication capture as well as advanced machine learning and AI-driven threat detection, protecting critical infrastructures with predictive cyber security and operation solutions.

Droplet is a server and application delivery platform securing modern and legacy environments for public and private organisations across military, nuclear, local government, central government, NHS and enterprise in a true isolation encryption layer running on any platform.

Iothic provides technology to enable post-quantum secure, smart networks to function without reliance on third parties or single points of vulnerability, which presents higher productivity and asset utilisation from broader operational connectivity – at lower risk and lower cost.

Kuro is simplifying the cloud through software that helps organisations overcome numerous barriers to accessing cloud capabilities, which can often result in non-expert users finding the cloud confusing and inaccessible.

OrbiSky is working to transform business operations through development of next-generation encrypted data management technology, doing so with creation of an innovative edge data unit.

Salt Communications provides a secure mobile solution for sharing sensitive information. Organisations using its solution can accelerate decision making, increase productivity and drive efficiency.


Our cyber innovation team are here if you have any questions about NCSC For Startups or your application


NCSC For Startups is a unique opportunity for innovative startups to explore new concepts and collaborate with the UK government, Plexal and a broad spectrum of industry and academic partners to develop, iterate and pilot solutions that the UK needs the most.

Saj Huq, Director of Innovation, Plexal

Saj Huq

Hear from our startups

Learn more about the challenges they’re solving and what they want to achieve with NCSC For Startups…

NCSC Startups

New Challenges

Infrastructure audits

How can we conduct real-time audits of changing cloud infrastructures to govern and control risks?

Secure cloud

How can we manage what is run in cloud environments and enable movement of code and data between high and low side environments?

Trusted endpoints

How can we secure networks and endpoints with zero trust?

Operational technology

Meet NCSC For Startups alumnus Rebellion Defence

Rebellion Defence is a British-American unicorn company that builds AI products for the defence and security needs of the UK, the US and their allies.

While taking part in NCSC For Startups, the company secured a healthy $150m in funding, which brought its valuation to $1bn. It also used the programme to hone its product-market fit by working closely with the NCSC’s technical architects.

Rebellion Defence

Meet the 70+ NCSC For Startups Alumni