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Open Call: Autonomous Resilient Cyber Defence (ARCD) Intelligent Agents

Defence & Security
Digital, AI & Machine Learning
Project Size:

This IFA is open for submissions until 02 March 2022 when it will close.

In response to operational demands, military networks and systems are becoming more complex and interconnected, both internally and with allies, and with commercial and civilian infrastructure. In parallel, attacks are becoming more sophisticated, with potentially more impact on military operations. Identifying, selecting and carrying out cyber defence responses in a timely manner is essential.

Within this Emerging Innovation Competition DASA is expecting proposals with low Technical Readiness Level (TRLs 1- 4). We have two levels of funding:

  • Less than 6 month contract: up to £150K
  • 6 to 12 month contract: up to £300K

This Emerging Innovation IFA is open for submissions within the DASA Open Call until 02 March 2022. (See Para 9.1). Further competitions may be advertised

The Autonomous Resilient Cyber Defence (ARCD) project aims to research and develop self-defending, self-recovering concepts for military platforms and technologies. The goal is to deliver a new paradigm in Cyber Defence, reducing the time it takes to respond to incidents and ensuring freedom of action.

Key will be the development of autonomous agents which perceive their environment, take actions autonomously and improve its performance with learning. Such agents should respond to adversary / threat activity on networks and systems without human intervention. These agents will need to operate with incomplete or uncertain data, analyse a range of (potentially complex) response options, evaluate the risks and impact of selected approaches and continuously monitor for unintended consequences. These agents may need to operate in edge environments where computer capability is scarce and should be auditable by a human operator.

We require proposals to include Deliverables and where applicable to a specific deliverable, this must include source/object code.

We are not seeking proposals that:

  • provide solutions, which are already commercial products (or are included as part of commercial products / cybersecurity platforms)
  • focus on the detection of anomalous or malicious activity
  • aim to solely develop training environments for autonomous agents
  • aim to conduct literature reviews or outputs which are just a report.

Suppliers are strongly encouraged to submit a Innovation Outline prior to full proposal submission. To submit this outline, please visit the contact a DASA Innovation Partner page.

We will aim for the Innovation Partner to contact you within 10 working days of your Innovation Outline submission. Once the Innovation Partner has considered your outline, they will advise you whether your idea is suitable for DASA funding and provide you with guidance on the bidding process.

To increase the impact and likelihood of exploitation, the output of these proposals may be shared across UK government as appropriate. Furthermore, as deemed appropriate, proposal outputs may be shared with partner nation governments including Five Eyes (FVEYS) partners nations in accordance with the rights secured under DEFCON 705. However, DASA reserves the right to apply an alternative Intellectual Property contractual conditions if individual circumstances dictate, to be mutually agreed with you before a contract is awarded. Under the terms of DEFCON 705 any intellectual property generated under the contract belongs to the contractor. In return, the funding Authority obtains a set of rights to use the delivered technical information and associated intellectual property for specified purposes.

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