Cyber security boost with 120 jobs from US and £38.5m R&D cash

CSIT director Dr Godfrey Gaston with Anomali CEO Hugh Njemanze and Invest NI CEO Alastair Hamilton
CSIT director Dr Godfrey Gaston with Anomali CEO Hugh Njemanze and Invest NI CEO Alastair Hamilton
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Northern Ireland’s global reputation as a major centre of cyber security development has been boosted by news of 120 new jobs and a significant investment announcement for Belfast.

US based cyber security firm Anomali is to create 120 jobs with the opening of its European Research and Development Labs in the city, while the Centre for Secure Information Technologies (CSIT) will generate investment of £38.5 million in research & development, further encouraging the growth of the cyber security sector here.

“Northern Ireland is enjoying a growing international reputation as a region of expertise and knowledge in cyber security,” said Invest NI CEO Alastair Hamilton.

“Today’s announcement of both a new inward investor, the Anomali R&D Labs, and a significant investment by CSIT will only see this reputation continue to grow.”

Given that the province is currently ranked the number one location in the world for cyber security inward investment, Mr Hamilton said it was no surprise that Californian based Anomali had chosen to invest here.

“This significant investment by Anomali will create 120 new jobs over the next three years, generating £4.1m in additional salaries for the Northern Ireland economy.

“The roles on offer will provide valuable opportunities for talented graduates and experienced staff across a range of disciplines, including software engineering and sales.”

Anomali provides cyber security solutions to help organisations identify and respond to security threats.

“Anomali has emerged as the leader in threat intelligence solutions, which has driven our rapid growth,” said CEO Hugh Njemanze.

“As our customer base expanded globally we looked for ways we can grow our own operations and serve the needs of the market. We are pleased to make Belfast the new base for developing new products and scaling our business in Europe and beyond.”

Invest NI has offered Anomali support of £780,000 towards the new jobs which are expected to be in place by the end of 2019, with an average salary of £34,445. 23 of the positions are already in place.

Invest NI has also offered CSIT £5.5m of assistance to support the next stage of its research strategy.

CSIT, the UK’s lead university centre for cyber security research, is based at Queen’s University and encourages collaboration among academics, researchers, engineers, industry and government to accelerate the results of cyber and physical security research through to commercial application.

“CSIT’s investment in R&D encompasses a very complex technology project which will be undertaken by a team of experts over a five year period and will help to grow the cyber security cluster in Northern Ireland,” said Mr Hamilton.

“The economic benefits of the cyber security industry to Northern Ireland are evident which is why we have identified it as one of our growth priorities within our new Business Strategy.”

Dr Godfrey Gaston, Director of CSIT at Queen’s said: “CSIT’s position as the UK’s national Innovation and Knowledge Centre for cyber security research reflects the critical mass of researchers who are working with industrially experienced engineers to accelerate the translation of new innovations in this area through to global markets.

“Through our CSIT Labs programme we are helping the next generation of cyber security start-ups and SMEs such as B-Secur and Uleska scale-up and compete internationally.”