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26 February, 2014 - 09:13 By Tony Quested

Cambridge cybertech in UK power play

Darktrace CEO, Andrew France

A UK power generation giant is taking Cambridge technology as a next-generation defence against advanced cyber threats.

Drax has chosen a cyber intelligence platform from Cambridge headquartered startup Darktrace, backed by Mike Lynch.

Drax is the owner and operator of the UK’s largest power station, currently providing enough power to meet 7-8 per cent of the UK’s electricity needs. It is in the process of transforming the business into a predominantly biomass-fuelled generator through burning sustainable biomass in place of coal.

Amid a changing threat landscape, Drax is committed to protecting the integrity of its critical systems and information assets. The company wanted to further strengthen its defensive capabilities and implement a sophisticated, intelligence-led approach to give it the ability to outpace potential threats.

Drax selected the Darktrace Cyber Intelligence Platform (DCIP), based on Darktrace’s ground-breaking Behavioural Cyber Defence, which is uniquely capable of detecting new, emerging threats within the network in real time.

Powered by new Recursive Bayesian Estimation mathematics, DCIP does not require prior knowledge or rules about threats, instead using advanced mathematical modelling to detect ‘unknown unknown’ threats in real time.

“Behavioural Cyber Defence technology adds another level of sophistication to our defence systems, and has already identified threats with the potential to disrupt our networks,” said Martin Sloan, head of safety and security at Drax.

“It helps us stay ahead of emerging threats and better defend our key systems. We are pleased to be working on cyber innovation with Darktrace’s leading self-learning platform.”

Darktrace CEO, Andrew France added: “Behavioural Cyber Defence is leading the way to a new age of cyber defence that allows organisations to get ahead of emerging threats as they happen.

“As part of the national infrastructure, Drax is helping protect one of the UK’s key electricity production facilities in the most sophisticated and resilient way yet.”

Darktrace is made up of world-class cyber intelligence experts and mathematicians. The company is headquartered in Cambridge, UK, with offices in London, New York, Paris and Milan.

• PHOTOGRAPH SHOWS: Andrew France, CEO at Darktrace

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