Plexal partners with the Secret Intelligence Service, opening SIS Technology Challenge to startups and SMEs

In keeping with our mission of closing the gap between organisations and using technology to deliver national security and prosperity, we’re pleased to announce Plexal is a key partner for the Secret Intelligence Service (SIS) – also known as MI6 – as part of the SIS Technology Challenge.

SIS wants to discover creative, interesting and novel solutions for a series of technology challenges. Aiming to take advantage of a thriving science and technology ecosystem, SIS recognises the opportunities this presents for national security, with the support of Plexal’s experience creating collaborative ecosystems for startups, government, industry and academia.

Could your product help protect the UK? Make your mission matter with the SIS Technology Challenge. This opportunity is designed to encourage non-traditional suppliers to work in the national security space, especially startups and SMEs with solutions that can be applied to one of six key challenge areas including:

Artificial Intelligence and Machine Learning Architecture 
To use diverse AI and ML technology most efficiently, SIS intends to underpin and streamline the onboarding and development of new algorithms by building a robust and cross utility AI and ML IT enterprise architecture.  

Assurance of Classified Information sharing
SIS shares classified information in a wide variety of formats, including voice, video, text-based messages, text documents and many other formats. Sharing information is part of a collaborative approach, allowing SIS partner(s) to share and edit documents and classified information between them in real time.  

Communications with Minimal Infrastructure 
SIS officer safety is paramount, from generic crime to more targeted threats such as state actor interference, and officers must be contactable at all times. This requires a communication device.  Communicating either locally or back to the UK becomes problematic where cellular services are patchy, or when officers are working in disaster areas and war zones. 

Inconsistent Access to Data  
To build reports, SIS ingests a wide variety of legally obtained information and data. The data landscape can be large and extremely varied, structured or unstructured.  It includes audio-visual information, financial records, travel records and many more.

Advanced Data Querying
SIS needs to be able to access, query and federate data across a disparate number of databases, which often sit in different network domains, are implemented in different technologies, have different query syntax and different security and access models. 

Single, Automated View of Data
To develop situational awareness and understanding, SIS analysts process and combine different data sets and information stored in a range of places and formats (for example, corporate records, emails, analytical tools etc.)  The aim is to reduce the manual overheads of sorting, collating and switching between systems, so our analysts can spend more time analysing and conducting assessments.   

Applications for the SIS Technology Challenge close at 23.59pm on Tuesday 9th January, so don’t delay. Submit your details for consideration now and further your company’s mission in support of the UK’s national security.