The UK government has joined hands with nine of the world's biggest defence contractors and telecoms providers to bolster the country's cyber security, in an initiative aimed at tackling the growing threat of hacking and other such attacks.
Among the companies that would team up with the government to share information on tackling cyber threats are BAE Systems, Rolls-Royce, BT Group, Lockheed Martin and Hewlett Packard, the Ministry of Defence said on Friday.
The government and industry networks report around 70 sophisticated cyber attacks a month, with 15 per cent of these targeted at the defence sector, according to GCHQ, the government spy centre which was also involved in the scheme.
The partnership also comes with contractors including BAE building up their cyber businesses to cater to increasing demand from governments and companies, at a time when demand for equipment has been hit by defence budget cuts.
The so-called Defence Cyber Protection Partnership would look to implement controls and share threat in a bid to strengthen the defence supply chain security.
According to minister for defence equipment, support and technology, Philip Dunne, this was a clear demonstration that government and industry could work together.
Finmeccanica's Selex unit, EADS's Cassidian arm, Thales, and CGI Group are the other companies in the partnership.
According to the MOD, the partnership would lead to greater sharing of intelligence about the latest cyber threats.
According to officials, they hoped the plan would serve as a model for other sectors.
The partnership would also work towards establishing higher standards of security for smaller companies in the supply chain.
In 2010 the British government designated the protection of computer networks as one of the country's most important national security priorities, pledging £650 million of new investment over the next four years to continue tackling the problem as part of its National Cyber Security Programme.
In March, the government unveiled the Cyber Security Information Sharing Partnership aimed at helping businesses and government share information on cyber threats. This includes a secure web portal for sharing of information in real time.