Military badge of honour for cyber security consultancy Computer Network Defence

GRATEFUL: Andy Cuff of Computer Network Defence

Cyber security consultancy Computer Network Defence has received national recognition for its steadfast support of the military community.

Computer Network Defence is one of only 19 regional winners to receive the Gold Award in the Armed Forces Employer Recognition Scheme 2022.

Representing the highest badge of honour for civilian organisations, the award goes to companies and organisations which employ and support veterans and their families, as well as those in active service as reservists.

A signatory to the Armed Forces Covenant, Computer Network Defence is also a cyber security recruitment agency with 56 staff at its headquarters in Corsham and on the Isle of Man, with many staff working remotely throughout the UK.

Andy Cuff, chief executive and founder of Computer Network Defence, said: “The scheme salutes private and public organisations that provide exceptional support to the UK Armed Forces, going beyond the Covenant pledges.

“Gold is the highest accolade granted under the scheme and is reserved for businesses with the strongest commitment to supporting the military community; it is testament to Computer Network Defence’s dedication to actively engaging with and supporting the Armed Forces community.”

He added: “I am truly humbled to work with such a fantastic team here – nearly one-third of our permanent employees, and half of our sub-contractors, are veterans. The award is national recognition of our steadfast and practical support for the military community.

“It can be difficult for serving personnel and veterans to make the transition to civilian life – we hope other employers in the private sector will be inspired to help.”

Support programmes for reservists, military spouses and veterans have been embedded in the company, which received the scheme’s Silver Award in 2017.

These include a mentor pool of ex-military staff and experienced recruiters, who provide career guidance and training, and IT provision for spouses so they can carry on remote working whilst accompanying their serving partner during deployments.

Over the past 12 months Computer Network Defence has also introduced new initiatives, including an additional five days leave for cadet force volunteers and 10 days paid leave awarded to reservists to attend their training and mobilisation commitments.

Andy said: “We also expanded support for the Armed Forces by encouraging our suppliers to work with the defence community too.”

The Armed Forces Covenant is a promise by the nation ensuring that those who serve or who have served in the armed forces, and their families, are treated fairly.

Computer Network Defence, which also supports military charities, developed a website which is the go-to place for the world’s biggest security agencies – https://radar.securitywizardry.com/

The company provides cyber security services to a multitude of clients ranging from spacecraft to superyachts and from energy farms to offshore banks

The consultancy was founded in 2004 as a family business by Andy and his wife Amanda after he completed 23 years’ service in the RAF.

Within two weeks of leaving the RAF Andy was commissioned into the Royal Signals as an Army Reservist (Cyber), where he is still serving.

Prior to joining the RAF, Andy was a cadet with the Air Training Corps. It is this start which prompted Computer Network Defence to offer cadet force volunteers five days paid leave each year.

The firm believes in ‘Giving Back’ beyond the military; earlier this year the business was one of the first to pay an emergency energy cost bonus of £700 to each member of staff to help meet escalating domestic gas and electricity bills.

A number of Armed Forces veterans have paid tribute to Computer Network Defence.

One said: “Computer Network Defence has been an invaluable resource – the company has gone out of its way to ease my apprehensions in my transition to civilian life; they have provided me with CV support, interview techniques and even the opportunity for work experience.

“If there are any service leavers who are finding themselves lost on where to start and are looking to get into the cyber security industry it may well be worth reaching out. With a friendly and approachable team, I really cannot thank them enough.”

A global security operations manager said: “Computer Network Defence is quite literally the catalyst to my post-Army career. It was a Computer Network Defence contractor that sparked my interest in getting into cyber security. Andy and his team were helpful, approachable and totally the driving force that helped me transition from Army life to corporate life.”

And a supplier to the business said: “One of the big things that inspires me is the support and promotion of the Armed Forces Covenant; as a veteran myself this is something that is very close to my heart.”