NEWS IN BRIEF

FutureScot’s round-up of what’s happening in Scotland’s digital and public technology sectors. Updated daily with news from FutureScot and other trusted sources.

Justice
03/07/2020
Success as Police Scotland targets online child abuse
One hundred suspects have been arrested in the past six months by Police Scotland in a crackdown on online child abuse. Read.

Built Environment
03/07/2020
Scottish Futures Trust looks to boost BIM uptake across school building programme
The Scottish Futures Trust (SFT) has launched a new Standard Information Management Plan (SIMP) which will enhance infrastructure delivery and performance within the Scottish government’s Learning Estate Investment Programme. Read.

Data
03/07/2020
App boosts role of women in peace processes
A mobile app has been launched to help embed women’s rights in peace negotiations in the Arab world and beyond. Read.

Education
03/07/2020
Safe return for all students to college and university
New guidance has been published to help Scotland’s colleges and universities prepare for a safe and phased return to campus. Read.

Health
03/07/2020
First rollout of AI-based cancer detection for NHS patients
LDPath will deploy Ibex’s Galen™ Prostate, an AI-powered solution to support pathologists in enhancing diagnostic accuracy and efficiency. Read.

Education & Energy
03/07/2020
AI set to deliver safer offshore work environments
A team of engineers from Heriot-Watt University’s, Smart Systems Group (SSG), say their ambitious project will protect lives and help prevent offshore disasters. Read.

Health
03/07/2020
Heriot-Watt launches pioneering assisted living lab.
Scientists from Heriot-Watt University are launching what is believed to be the world’s first open and remote access living lab to research and create solutions for Ambient Assisted Living (OpenAAL). Read.

Education
03/07/2020
University of Glasgow’s receives £1m from the Wolfson Foundation for work on quantum and nanotechnology
The University of Glasgow is to benefit from a £1m award from the Wolfson Foundation for its work on Quantum and Nanotechnology which will be a key focus of its new Research Hub in the Western campus. Read.

Business
03/07/2020
Shaping Scotland’s sustainable recovery
The Data-Driven Innovation initiative has contributed to a major Scottish government report on the economic recovery from Covid-19. Read.

Infrastructure
03/07/2020
5G to support Scotland’s fourth industrial revolution.
5G can underpin the next revolution in Scotland’s manufacturing base, with the development of a first-of-its-kind, private testbed at a pioneering R&D facility acting as the initial step, according to industry experts. Read.

Infrastructure
03/07/2020
Scottish Government backs 5g to boost Scotland’s economic recovery
The Scottish Government says 5G technology is critical to Scotland’s prosperity over the next decade as we recover from the economic impact of Covid-19. Read.

GREENHOUSE GASES IN GLASGOW’S AIR TO BE MONITORED IN REAL-TIME
03/07/2020
A network of sensors installed across Glasgow schools will monitor levels of the greenhouse gas (GHG) carbon dioxide (CO2) in the city’s air, which contributes to climate change.
The network of 25 sensors will be installed by scientists from the University of Strathclyde as part of a trial to provide Glasgow City Council, for the first time, with real-time information on emissions of CO2 and various noxious gases in the city’s air.
SOURCE: University of Strathclyde

RoS and HM LAND REGISTRY TO SHARE INSPIRE DATA UNDER OPEN TERMS
03/07/2020
The datasets will together map over 23 million title extents across Scotland, England and Wales under new, less restricted terms from the beginning of this month (July).
The new terms will broaden commercial use, creating opportunities and fuelling innovation in land and property, utility and infrastructure related industries.
The news follows the Geospatial Commission’s April announcement of the Public Sector Geospatial Agreement (PSGA), including Ordnance Survey’s (OS) new freedoms for the publication of property extents.
Source: Registers of Scotland

FUNDRAISING ROUND SUPPORTS SCOTTISH DEVELOPER OF SOCIAL DISTANCING TECH
03/07/2020
Reactec, the Edinburgh-based tech company that recently launched its innovative SAFE-DISTANCE device to enable social distancing among workers, has completed a further £700,000 round of fundraising for the ongoing development of its innovative personal monitoring equipment and reporting technology.
SOURCE: Scottish Enterprise

PIVOTAL MEMBER OF THE DATA LAB’S TOP TEAM PROMOTED TO DEPUTY CEO
03/07/2020
A founding member of the leadership team at The Data Lab, Scotland’s innovation centre for data and artificial intelligence, who has been key in driving its growth has been given a new senior role.
Brian Hills has been promoted from head of data to deputy chief executive and head of service design. He will deputise for chief executive Gillian Docherty, and lead the scaling of The Data Lab’s impact across Scotland through the growth of existing services and developing an “array” of new business opportunities.
Source: The Scotsman

UK GOVERNMENT HINTS AT U-TURN ON HUAWEI ROLE IN 5G TECHNOLOGY
03/07/2020
UK Culture Secretary tells defence committee US sanctions likely to affect Chinese firm’s viability
The government may be close to announcing a U-turn on its controversial decision to allow Huawei to supply 5G technology, the culture secretary has hinted by saying US sanctions appear likely to affect the Chinese company.
Oliver Dowden told members of a special defence select committee scrutinising Huawei that an emergency review ordered last month was close to running its course and that a change in policy would probably be necessary
Source: The Guardian

 TSB ADDS 80 STAFF TO CAPITAL SITE
03/07/2020
TSB has recruited almost 80 of the 100 new staff that will work – flexibly- in its new technology centre in Edinburgh.
The announcement comes after the bank in January said it was creating 100 high-skilled technology focused jobs as it unveiled plans for a new technology hub at its HQ in the centre of the city.
Source: The Scotsman

STRATHCLYDE TEAM INVOLVED IN QUANTUM ENTANGLEMENT DEMONSTRATOR
03/07/2020
In a critical step toward creating a global quantum communications network, researchers have generated and detected quantum entanglement onboard a CubeSat nanosatellite weighing less than 2.6 kg and orbiting the Earth.
The University of Strathclyde is involved in an international team which has demonstrated that their miniaturised source of quantum entanglement can operate successfully in space aboard a low-resource, cost-effective CubeSat that is smaller than a shoebox. CubeSats are a standard type of nanosatellite made of multiples of 10 cm × 10 cm × 10 cm cubic units.
Source: University of Strathclyde

Local Government
26/06/2020
Aberdeen City Council and Microsoft launch Chatbots
Aberdeen City Council have worked with Microsoft Services to launch a chatbot that will respond to queries from employees, and questions from citizens helping to cut down on the number of calls coming into Council services departments. Read.

Education
26/06/2020
Government investment of £100 million to tackle poverty attainment gap
Schools will return full-time in August if Scotland continues to make progress on suppressing coronavirus (COVID-19), Deputy First Minister John Swinney has announced. Read.

Data/Education
26/06/2020
Data scientists assist NHS Lanarkshire manage intensive care bed demand
Data scientists at the University of Strathclyde helped NHS Lanarkshire to predict and manage hospital bed capacity for COVID-19 patients during the most critical phase of the current pandemic. Read.

Health
26/06/2020
Research highlights advantages of digital blood pressure system
Patients who need a blood pressure test might not need to visit their GP thanks to a digital system that makes it easier to send results to their doctor. Read.

Education
26/06/2020
Virtual field trip first for students
Geology students at Heriot-Watt are participating in what is believed to be a first for the University – a fully virtual field trip. Read.

Cyber
26/06/2020
Cyber Resilience Bulletin
The Scottish Government’s Cyber Resilience Unit is producing a regular ‘Cyber Resilience Bulletin’ for private and public sector organisations, charities and the general public in collaboration with SCVO, SBRC and the Police Scotland Cyber Team. Make yourself Cyber Aware by checking out their latest bulletin here.

Education
26/06/2020
Heriot Watt ‘future made for success’ programme launches
Heriot-Watt University and leading businesses from a range of sectors have formed a unique global collaboration which aims to drive economic recovery while addressing the challenges faced by this year’s graduates. Read.

Education
26/06/2020
Immersive technology for teaching and learning piloted via existing video-conference software
The University of Glasgow and leading Scottish immersive technology company Sublime have combined virtual reality learning and video conferencing to help improve students’ remote teaching experience during the Covid-19 crisis. Read.

Government
26/06/2020
Now in their 10th year, the AbilityNet Tech4Good Awards recognise organisations and individuals who use digital technology to improve the lives of others and make the world a better place. If you know of any individual, start-up, charity, business, local authority, public body, school, college, university or any other organisation with a base in the UK that is doing great work with digital, be sure to nominate them today!

Education
26/06/2020
125 students selected to join city of Glasgow college’s worldskills team
The students selected are part of the WorldSkills National Training and Development Programme, preparing for the National Finals at WorldSkills UK LIVE. Read.

Business
26/06/2020
Significant funding boost for Scotland’s fintech cluster
The growing international role of Scotland’s fintech cluster was given a further significant boost today with the announcement of £22.5 million innovation funding for the Global Open Finance Centre of Excellence (GOFCoE) to be established in Edinburgh and the Central region. Read.

Education
26/06/2020
Collaboration underway between University of Dundee and Michelin Scotland Innovation Parc
The University of Dundee and Michelin Scotland Innovation Parc (MSIP) have announced a strategic partnership, with the signing of a Memorandum of Understanding. Read.

Infrastructure
26/06/2020
CityFibre moves forward with inverness’ digital transformation
Work is now well underway to build a future-proof full fibre network to reach almost every home and business in the city. Read.

Education
26/06/2020
The Learning Passport
As part of BT Skills for Tomorrow, The Learning Passport aims to help children and young people continue their education at home. Created by Unicef and Microsoft, it provides schoolchildren with online books and videos. There is additional support for parents of children with learning disabilities, as well as key resources for teachers and educators. Find out more about The Learning Passport by visiting the Unicef website here.

Justice
26/06/2020
Lord Carloway calls for legislation to address court backlog
The Lord President, Lord Carloway, said measures proposed so far had simply been “tinkering at the edges” of a major problem. He warned that if things continued as they had been, there could be a backlog of 3,000 jury trials in the high and sheriff courts by next March. Read.

Health/Education
26/06/2020
Project to tackle loneliness using VR, apps and video games
Abertay University has been awarded £276,000 as part of a ground-breaking international project aimed at using new technologies to tackle loneliness and social isolation. Read.

Cyber
26/0/2020
International study shows near six-fold rise in cyber losses
Cyber losses among businesses targeted in the past year have risen nearly six-fold, from a median US$10,000 (£7,990) per firm to US$57,000 (£45,546). But there are signs firms are responding with more rigorous security measures and higher spending, which increased 39%. These are among the findings in a study of 5,569 companies across eight countries, commissioned by insurer Hiscox. Encouragingly, while losses increased, the proportion of businesses targeted fell from 61% to 39%.
SOURCE: HISCOX

Connectivity
26/06/2020
Full fibre broadband appointment
Openreach has appointed Aberdeenshire businesswoman Rosanne Moreland to lead its large-scale commercial build of ultra-reliable full fibre broadband in Scotland. Rosanne will also be responsible for the rollout of full fibre in parts of Greater Glasgow; Kilmarnock, Ayr and Stanecastle; Edinburgh; and Bathgate, Broxburn and Whitburn in West Lothian. Openreach is currently considering locations for further investment in Scotland.
SOURCE: Openreach

Government
26/06/2020
Thousands of hours in delays to be saved as UK’s first mainline digital railway introduced
East Coast Main Line set to become Britain’s first mainline digital rail link thanks to £350 million of new investment. This huge cash injection – on top of £1.2 billion already earmarked to upgrade one of the country’s most important rail arteries – will fund the replacement of conventional signalling with a digital system that allows trains to talk to the track.
SOURCE: Gov.UK

Government
26/06/2020
The UK is set to launch a new digital strategy, again
The digital secretary Oliver Dowden is set to launch a new digital strategy positioning the tech sector at the heart of the UK’s economic recovery following the coronavirus crisis. Speaking at the virtual UK Tech Cluster Group conference today (23 June), Dowden will announce that the new strategy will be published in autumn, marking the second such publication in just four years.
SOURCE: ScotlandIS

Business
26/06/2020
Government must invest in UK space programme or lose skills and risk security
Unite, the UK’s leading union, is urging the government to commit to invest in the UK’s space programme in the interests of national security and to ensure that thousands of highly skilled jobs are not put at further risk.
SOURCE: UNITE

BUSINESS
26/06/2020
Edinburgh Airport selects Leidos antimicrobial security tray technology
Leidos, was awarded a prime contract by Edinburgh Airport Limited (Edinburgh Airport) to upgrade the airport’s security tray return systems with antimicrobial tray technology. The implementation of antimicrobial technology complements other measures Edinburgh Airport is taking to minimize the spread of bacteria in the airport. This is Leidos’ first order of the antimicrobial security tray technology introduced to mitigate the spread of bacteria from person-to-surface contact. 
SOURCE:Leidos

Health
26/06/2020
Edinburgh BioQuarter begins search for partner to realise expansion plans
Edinburgh BioQuarter has issued a prior information notice (PIN) in the Official Journal of the European Union (OJEU) signalling its intention to launch a procurement process to deliver a world-leading Health Innovation District for Edinburgh. A virtual bidders’ day for interested parties to learn more is planned for 1 September 2020. BioQuarter is a partnership between the University of Edinburgh, one of the top 20 universities in the world, Scotland’s second largest health board, NHS Lothian, the City of Edinburgh Council and Scottish Enterprise.
SOURCE: Scottish Enterprise

Business
19/06/2020
VR game promotes wind turbine safety
A university-developed virtual reality (VR) game could help save the lives of wind turbine technicians who are at risk of fatal accidents or serious injury without regular refresher training. Read.

Health
19/06/2020
Wearable technology that predicts health risks at home certified as medical device
A wearable solution that identifies health risks, enabling people to live independently at home for longer, has been certified as an official medical device after conforming with EU standards. Read.

Government
19/06/2020
9 common myths about service design
Service designers are part of the community of professions who work together to bring user centred design approaches to build accessible and inclusive services for citizens and colleagues. Read.

Business
19/06/2020
First ever rocket launched from the Shetlands
The launch was completed for educational purposes, collecting meteorological data, measuring wind profiles, analysing the vehicles trajectory and providing critical training in support of Skyrora’s future plans. Read.

Infrastructure
19/06/2020
Openreach calls for Scottish Government to prioritise digital economy
Openreach chief executive Clive Selley is encouraging the Scottish Government to prioritise investment in the digital economy during recovery from the Covid-19 pandemic. Read.

Health
19/06/2020
Chatbot provides new route for Scottish patients to access Covid-19 support
People across Scotland who need help and information about coronavirus can now get help using an online chatbot from NHS 24, the organisation that provides Scotland’s 111 service. Read.

Infrastructure
19/06/2020
Edinburgh castle 3d model give ‘visitors’ a virtual tour
People can log on and discover 40 different historic areas of the Castle including the historic siege cannon Mons Meg with its 20-inch-wide barrel, the statue of Field Marshall Sir Douglas Haig on the famous esplanade and St Margaret’s Chapel, the oldest surviving building in Edinburgh. Read.

Security
19/06/2020
As many as 1,200 covid-related domains are still registered each day
Phishing campaigns related to COVID-19 are becoming more targeted and difficult to identify as the pandemic progresses, a new report from privacy advocacy group ProPrivacy suggests. Read.

Infrastructure
19/06/2020
Commsworld makes history with completion of its own, unique £10m uk-wide optical core network
Commsworld has taken a historic final step in its transformation from telecoms disruptor to the UK’s largest independent network provider. Read.

Health
19/06/2020
VIDATEC works with university of Stirling on a carer support app
Mobile app developer Vidatec is developing a new platform to support informal carers during COVID-19 pandemic. The company has partnered with the University of Stirling on the project aimed at ensuring carers have access to real-time information to help them limit the risks associated with the outbreak and access support during the crisis. Read.

Data
18/06/2020
Edinburgh is Britain’s Biggest Bandwidth User
From the kids watching Disney+ to DIY tutorials on YouTube, the UK’s broadband network has been under immense pressure during lockdown, but which city is the UK’s biggest bandwidth user based on how often they search for top online streaming services? Read.

Business
12/06/2020
UK Tech Ecosystem Update
A recent report published on behalf of the UK Governments Digital Economy Council  shows the resilience of startups and growing tech companies in Scotland. Read.

Education
12/06/2020
Creative Informatics Innovation Showcase 2020
To mark the first year of the programme, Creative Informatics is holding a CI Innovation Showcase event online, on Wednesday the 17th of June. Read.

Education
12/06/2020
University of Glasgow set to launch Summer STEM Academy for lockdown learning.
The Summer STEM Academy is a series of online science and engineering workshops aimed at school pupils and teachers which has been arranged by Dr Margaret Ritchie from The University of Glasgow School of Chemistry. Read.

Justice
12/06/2020
The Scottish Police Authority publish £6m tender document.
In a tender notice published this week, the authority is inviting bids from software and services suppliers to create a virtual analytics platform, acquire a metadata management product and data discovery solutions for compliance purposes. Read.

Infrastructure
12/06/2020
National map of Scotland’s pavement widths.
The map has already been taken up by over 30 local authorities, including Glasgow, Stirling and East Dunbartonshire. Read.

Education
12/06/2020
City of Glasgow College bringing together the UK’s leading literacy experts and software developers.
The college is developing a new smartphone app as part of its ground-breaking City Phonics programme for adult literacy learners. Read.

Government
12/06/2020
The Digital Directorate has said that public cloud should be the default platform for user services.
The Digital Directorate has said that public cloud should be the default platform for user services, with partner organisations considering cloud before other options. Read.

Education
12/06/2020
£50 million to improve attainment

Schools and local authorities receive funding boost. Pupils living in Scotland’s most deprived communities will benefit from targeted funding from the Attainment Scotland Fund to help close the poverty-related attainment gap. Nine local councils with the highest concentrations of deprivation in Scotland, known as “Challenge Authorities”, will share £43 million of investment from the Attainment Scotland Fund. Source: Scottish Government

Infrastructure
12/06/2020
CityFibre announces 10,000 jobs boost
Thousands of jobs, targeted at both skilled and unskilled people, service-leavers and unemployed, to be created across CityFibre’s network of construction partners. Read.

Health
12/06/2020
Coronavirus: Ministers consider NHS contact-tracing app rethink
Concerns about the risks of deploying a go-it-alone UK coronavirus contact-tracing app are causing further delays.A second version of the smartphone software was due to have begun testing on the Isle of Wight on Tuesday, but the government decided to postpone the trial.
Ministers are considering switching the app over to tech developed by Apple and Google. SOURCE: BBC

Justice
12/06/2020
CCTV systems in Edinburgh to undergo £650k upgrade programme
Edinburgh’s ageing CCTV systems are likely to receive a much-needed spruce-up as part of a £650,000 investment programme, a recent news report in the local media has been able to suggest.
The council is exploring the use of current technologies and data systems to turn Edinburgh into a “smart city” in the future. The city’s updated CCTV network will likely be a key component of that upgrade.
SOURCE: CCTV Surveillance

AI
12/06/2020
‘Bat-like’ sensor could help social distancing as lockdown lifts
A disruptive Scottish start-up company based in the Edinburgh Business School Incubator has developed a sensor which allows an Artificial Intelligence (A.I.) to understand the physical world around it. Read.

Education
08/06/2020
8 Scottish education technology companies to watch
With growing demand for innovative tech solutions in education, Scotland’s smartest ed tech companies are rising to the challenge, supporting schools and education providers worldwide. Read.

Justice
05/06/2020
Criminals seek to exploit COVID-19 outbreak 
Criminals are exploiting the COVID-19 pandemic and playing on the fears of businesses and the public, Scotland’s Serious Organised Crime Taskforce has heard. Read.

Health
05/06/2020
Digital Pen that Detects Neuromotor Illnesses Gets Major Cash Injection
Manus Neurodynamica, a medical technology firm based in Edinburgh, has secured £750,000 in funding for its digital pen technology which provides an early warning of Parkinson’s disease. Read.

Health
05/06/2020
Yoti equips Volunteer Edinburgh with free volunteer digital ID cards
Volunteer Edinburgh is harnessing Yoti’s digital identity platform to remotely issue volunteers with digital ID cards directly to their phone. This innovative solution marks their commitment to safeguard recipients of the charity’s support and comes as part of Yoti’s free Covid-19 Pledge to organisations tackling the coronavirus crisis. Read.

Health
05/06/2020
Contact tracing information gathering
Information used by NHS Scotland contact tracers will be safely and securely gathered as part of the coronavirus (COVID-19) Test and Protect approach. Read.

Business
05/06/2020
Scottish Firm Utilising Technology to Make Ports Safer and Greener
The company developed it’s the software with grant support from Scottish Enterprise and is using the Montrose Port Authority as a testbed to refine the technology. Read.

Justice
05/06/2020
Impact of COVID-19 on crime
An analysis of the impact of the coronavirus (COVID-19) lockdown has shown a decrease in almost all areas of crime recorded by police. Read.

Health
05/06/2020
Amazon Helps World Health Organization Launch Covid-19 App 12 Months Early
The World Health Organization (WHO) and Amazon Web Services (AWS) have exclusively told me how they have teamed up to create an app that helps health workers respond to the Covid-19 pandemic. The app was designed around the needs expressed by 20,000 global health workers in a WHO Academy survey conducted in March.
Source: Forbes

Health
05/06/2020
Primary care is having its online banking moment
GP appointment stats show rapid digital switch during the COVID-19 pandemic. Statistics from EMIS GP clinical systems have confirmed a drop in face-to-face consultations with patients since COVID-19 – and highlighted the instant switch to digital working.
Their software is used in 57% of UK GP practices and shows that in the two weeks between 2 March and 23 March, when the UK went into lockdown. Consultations dropped by a third. Read.

Legal & Justice
05/06/2020
Edinburgh fintech firm Aveni secures £520,000 backing
Scottish fintech Aveni has secured seed investment of £520,000 for its video conferencing-based AI technology, which aims to transform client interaction in financial and professional advice sectors in the new age of ‘digital client service’.
The investment, will accelerate Aveni’s growth, initially focused on the financial services and legal sectors, while growing its team of specialist engineers.

Health
05/06/2020
Coronavirus: France’s virus-tracing app ‘off to a good start’
StopCovid France is designed to prevent a second wave of infections by using smartphone logs to warn users if they have been near someone who later tested positive for the virus.
But a last-minute launch delay led some citizens to download the wrong product.
England has yet to confirm when its own app will roll out.
Source: BBC

Health
05/06/2020
Social media firms fail to act on Covid-19 fake news
Hundreds of posts spreading misinformation about Covid-19 are being left online, according to a report from the Center for Countering Digital Hate.
Some 649 posts were reported to Facebook and Twitter, including false cures, anti-vaccination propaganda and conspiracy theories around 5G.
Source: BBC

Health
05/06/2020
Canadian contact-tracing app tackles users privacy concerns and could address Scots adoption concerns.
Mimik Technology Inc. a Canadian tech company with strong Scottish connections has developed a contact-tracing app it says will address privacy concerns. Read.

Education
05/06/2020
ThingLink launches a MEC course on creating visual learning materials for blended learning
Amanda Pickard, a primary teacher and MIEExpert from South Ayrshire in Scotland created this virtual classroom to make home learning simpler and engaging, and even enlisted the help of her trusty pooch to introduce tasks related to building sentences for her young learners. Explore the number tags to hear directly from Amanda and Travis! Read.

Justice
05/06/2020
Innovative thinking needed to support justice in pandemic.
All new trials across Scotland have been suspended due to the pandemic and many courts are closed, with cases before sheriffs taking place in 10 hub courts across the country. Read.

Health
05/06/2020
Digital pen that detects neuromotor illnesses gets major funding boost.
Manus Neurodynamica, a medical technology firm based in Edinburgh, has secured £750,000 in funding for its digital pen technology which provides an early warning of Parkinson’s disease. The company says it intends to use the funding to grow its business, grow its product list, expand its team and move towards US clinical trials. Manus Neurodynamica is aiming to use the new funding to take its pioneering device to new markets. 

Education
05/06/2020
Glasgow tech firm develops mobile game to help children prevent spread of coronavirus.
A Glasgow-based technology company is developing a mobile game aimed at helping children prevent the spread of COVID-19. Read.

Business
05/06/2020
Data and AI is key to supporting sector through the energy transition.
The sudden requirement to work from home and therefore access data remotely has thrown many companies headfirst into digitalisation, whether they felt ready for it or not. Read.

Infrastructure
05/06/2020
Commsworld Chair calls for UK Government to invest in digital infrastructure.
The new chair of Edinburgh-based telecoms provider Commsworld says the UK must invest more in digital infrastructure to meet the challenges of a post-coronavirus world. Read.

Business
05/06/2020
CivTech 5.0 to launch in July.
CivTech are calling on government departments, NDPBs and the third sector to bring their problems, develop them into CivTech 5.0 Challenges and have them addressed by Scotland’s brightest innovators. Read.

Local Government
04/06/2020
The City of Edinburgh Council launches online platform for walkers and cyclists  
The Commonplace mapping tool, has been designed for the Edinburgh public to input into the best routes for maintaining physical distancing during the coronavirus pandemic. Read.

Education & Cyber
05/06/2020
Tycoon ransomware poses new threat to education, IT organisations
A new Java-based ransomware strain dubbed ‘Tycoon’ is being deployed using an uncommon data format in an effort to evade security defences.
According to research published by BlackBerry Threat Intelligence, in partnership with KPMG’s UK Cyber Response team, Tycoon is a multi-platform ransomware targeting both Windows and Linux devices.
The malware, first seen in the wild in December 2019, is deployed in the form of trojanised Java Runtime Environment (JRE) and leverages an obscure Java image in an attempt to “fly under the radar”.
Source: The Daily Swig

Health
03/06/2020
Amazon is using its logistics network to support  Government
Amazon teams worldwide are working around the clock to ensure they continue to provide important services, while keeping staff safe. This includes a new effort with the UK Government where industry partners, universities and research institutes are lending expertise to boost testing capacity. Read.

EduTech
03/06/2020
8 Scottish education technology companies to watch.
This is particularly relevant during the COVID-19 pandemic, where technology is providing a bridge to online learning and everyday communications. It can also help with issues such as teacher shortages, workload, pupil behaviour and improve factors such as inclusivity, mental health and children’s online safety and security. Read.

Health
29/05/2020
Switzerland’s coronavirus contact-tracing app says it has become the first to have launched a product incorporating a technology provided by Apple and Google. Read

Health
29/05/2020
Procurement Pathway for Digital Telecare launched to identify challenges and ensure a smooth, safe, transition to A digital service for citizens in receipt of telecare in their home environments.  Read

Business
29/05/2020
Scotland performs well in attracting Foreign Direct Investment (FDI), and has a solid base from which to sustain its flow of FDI in a post-pandemic world. 
However, there has been a big shift in the sectors responsible for most FDI in Scotland, with digital and business services no longer the leading sectors. Read

Infrastructure
29/05/2020
National connectivity infrastructure projects have been created by successful national policies but they need support from local bodies to deliver on promises. Read

Education
29/05/2020
Launch Partnership Signed Between University of Edinburgh’s Asteria Student Satellite Group and Responsive Access
A student-led satellite group from the University of Edinburgh has signed a Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) with Responsive Access. Read

Cyber
29/05/2020
New report reveals UK as world leader in online safety innovation
A study published this week shows significant growth of ‘safety tech’ businesses and their importance in plans to make UK the safest place to be online. Read.

Justice
29/05/2020
Morton Fraser has been appointed to deliver legal services to Police Scotland and the Scottish Police Authority.
The contract was awarded through a competitive tender process and will be delivered over the next two years, with two potential one-year extensions. Read.

Cyber
29/05/2020
Cyber review may spell end for Huawei 5G deal
The National Cyber Security Centre in the UK is expected to conclude that US sanctions against Huawei will make it impossible to use the Chinese company’s technology as planned for 5G networks. Read.

Built environment
29/05/2020
New technology transforms how Scotland’s historic buildings are managed, maintained and repaired  
A new software tool, which allows surveys and fabric inspections of traditional buildings to be carried out digitally, has been developed by Historic Environment Scotland (HES), The University of Edinburgh and Heriot-Watt University. Read.

Infrastructure
25/05/2020
Glasgow is Scotland’s busiest place on EE’s network for usage of apps during lockdown 
Glasgow was the busiest area in Scotland on EE’s network for usage of communication apps, including WhatsApp, Houseparty, Skype and Teams during the Covid-19 lockdown period. It came tenth in the UK overall.  Read.

Education
29/05/2020
Education Scotland praise local authorities for supporting learners 
Aberdeen City Council, Dundee City Council and North Ayrshire Council have received praise from Education Scotland. Read.

Infrastructure
25/05/2020
5G Cybersecurity: Preparing a Secure Evolution 
The National Institutes of Standards and Technology’s (NIST) National Cybersecurity Center of Excellence (NCCoE) is asking industry to demonstrate products and technical expertise to support its recently launched project. Read.

Health
22/052020
The Faculty of Clinical Informatics announces Mahmood Adil as Council Member till 2022 
Mahmood is Medical Director of Public Health Scotland, National Clinical Data & Digital Lead of Royal College of Physicians of Edinburgh and a doctor with over 25 years of medical, public health, executive management & policy experience in the NHS and USA. 

Infrastructure
22/05/2020
Capita’s SWAN programme  will see gigabit-capable connectivity installed across The Highland Region throughout 2020 and 2021
CityFibre, the UK’s third national digital infrastructure platform, is connecting 152 public sector sites in the Highlands to gigabit-capable full fibre broadband as part of a £7.5m contract to bolster digital services in the area through the SWAN framework. Read.

Government
22/05/2020
SCOTLANDIS and the Scottish Government call on Scots tech firms to help build ‘digital nation’
ScotlandIS and The Scottish Government are calling on Scottish-based tech firms of all sizes to help increase the pace of Scotland’s digital progress and develop the critical national digital and data infrastructure the country needs. Read.

Government
22/05/2020
Scotland joins the Public Sector Geospatial Agreement (PSGA)
The Scottish Government and Geospatial Commission have agreed that from May 2020 Scotland will become part of the recently launched Public Sector Geospatial Agreement. Read.

Infrastructure
22/05/2020
BT start talks to sell stake in Openreach
BT has reportedly started talks to sell a multibillion-pound stake in Openreach, which runs the UK’s broadband network. Read.

Cyber
22/05/2020
UK Manufacturing most attacked industry as cyber criminals innovate and automate attacks
Cyber criminals are evolving their tradecraft with new innovations and increasingly automating their attacks. In the UK and Ireland, Manufacturing became the most attacked sector representing almost a third of all attacks, while Technology was the most attacked sector globally. Read.

Health
22/05/2020
Location technology developed for concerts, sports events and transport hubs
Statistics from the National Records of Scotland (NRS) show that more than half of the recorded coronavirus deaths in Scotland over recent weeks were in Wyld Networks is trialing a monitoring app with a company that promotes innovations in healthcare as a means of combating the spread of the coronavirus. Read.

Infrastructure
22/05/2020
The evolution of telecoms during the COVID-19 lockdown
As the world shuttered businesses and confined people to their homes in an attempt to slow the spread of COVID-19, our private and professional lives moved online – and we are unlikely to see a full return to “normality” anytime soon. Read.

Legal
22/05/2020
How should employers prepare for a return to work once lockdown lifts?
How confident can we be that employees are able to safely get to, and into, their place of work? What are the obligations on employers and employees? And, for workers whose only option is to commute, is it feasible to socially distance on a bus or train? Read.

Health
22/05/2020
Can NHS tracing app keep health data in shape?
As the UK Government tests the long-awaited NHS contact-tracing app, the Scottish Government initiates its track, trace, isolate and support scheme and employers start to monitor health data and test results, the public is asking pertinent questions about the lawful use of health data. Read.

Government
22/05/2020
The Scottish Government appoints Deloitte to support Social Security Directorate.
In September 2018, the Scottish Government established Social Security Scotland, a new Executive Agency of the Scottish Government. Social Security Scotland’s primary responsibility is the administration of devolved social security benefits for people in Scotland. Read.

Business
19/05/2020
SCOTLANDIS and the Scottish Government call on scots tech firms to help build ‘digital nation’
ScotlandIS and The Scottish Government are today calling on Scottish-based tech firms of all sizes to help increase the pace of Scotland’s digital progress and develop the critical national digital and data infrastructure the country needs. Read.

Health
18/05/2020
Contact tracing technology piloted
NHS Scotland Contact tracing technology will be tested in NHS Fife, NHS Lanarkshire and NHS Highland from Monday 18 May. The pilot, which is expected to last two weeks, will allow the health boards to test out the software which contact tracers will use to collect the information that they need digitally. Read.

Health
15/05/2020
Newly developed app built in 5 days provides latest NHS information on COVID-19
One of Scotland’s leading digital design agency’s has developed an app with Scotland’s national healthcare service NHS 24 to give users the latest information and guidance on Covid-19. Read.

Health
15/05/2020
NHS Louisa Jordan Hospital in Glasgow gets digital boost
Vodafone UK has boosted the capacity of its network to support the staff and patients of the NHS Louisa Jordan Hospital in Glasgow. The enhanced networt will give patients and NHS workers the capability to video and voice call their families and friends. Read.

Education
15/05/2020
UK First for Scottish Borders Council
Over 96% of young people are accessing learning resources through SBC’s  Inspire Learning programme. Read.

Justice & legal 
15/05/2020
What are the practical implications of online working for information security? 
No area of our life has remained untouched by the impact of COVID-19 and our information management practices are no exception. We are having to find new ways of working and adapt to the lack of face-to-face contact we are all used to. Read.

Infrastructure
15/05/2020
Edinburgh-based Reactec has devised Safedistance  to be used within construction, rail, manufacturing and other workplaces.
Safedistance  alerts workers if they have strayed to within two metres of a colleague. The device is also designed to inform employers of the frequency and severity of breaches of social distancing protocols and can help with contact tracing of those who’ve been close to employees who subsequently display Covid-19 symptoms. Read.

Infrastructure
14/05/2020
Scotland’s R100 Boss Talks Future Broadband Plans
The Programme Director for R100 (Reaching 100%) programme, Clive Downing speaks to ISPreview.co.uk. This is an excellent article which explains the current status of the R100 programme supported explanatory links. You can read the full interview on their website. Read.

Infrastructure
14/05/2020
Broadband firms stand firm during pandemic.
Average UK broadband speeds largely held up during the coronavirus (Covid-19) lockdown. This is according to recently launched Ofcom research, Home Broadband Performance Report, which shows how broadband speeds changed before and after the lockdown. Read.

Health
14/05/2020
NHS Dumfries and Galloway launches messaging solution lowering Covid-19 test result times.
NHS Dumfries & Galloway has adopted messaging technology from Netcall to support patients and staff communications on COVID-19 test results. Read.

Education
13/05/2020
Museums Galleries Scotland continue their work online. 
Although unable to open during the lockdown, museums and galleries have continued their work online with exhibitions and activities to help lift spirits and educate people about history. Read.

Health
13/05/2020
Historic Environment Scotland produce PPE for NHS Scotland staff.
The public body has repurposed technology at its national conservation centre, the Engine Shed in Stirling, to manufacture visors, for Glasgow’s Queen Elizabeth University Hospital (QEUH) maxillofacial department staff. Read.

Education
13/05/2020
A report has shed light on the extent of inequality still faced by women who work in STEM-related professions across Scotland.
Equate Scotland has published the findings of a report looking at the experiences of more than 400 women working in STEM (Science, Technology, Engineering & Maths) professions. Read.

Built Environment/Infrastructure
13/05/2020
CSIC has launched a webinar events series as part of its i-Con COVID-19 support initiative for the built environment. 
The event, which will take place on May 19 from 12 to 12:45pm, is the first of a series of collaborative online events and will explore ‘What change is needed for reset and recovery in the Built Environment’. Read.

Education
08/05/2020
Over 2000 primary and secondary school pupils in Scotland will have the chance to hear from Tim Peake
Sharing his story of space exploration, including experiments he undertook which couldn’t be done on earth, Peake will also place a focus on STEM subjects, explaining their importance as we look to the future and the unlimited career paths that they could open up for students. Read.

Education
08/05/2020
School fundraises to keep pupils learning
Teachers at a Scottish secondary are seeking to raise £10,000 to ensure that all their pupils have access to a device and a reliable internet connection so they can access the school’s Digital approach to Learning, introduced as a result of the COVID-19 lockdown.  Read.

Health
08/05/2020
All NHS staff in Scotland to use Microsoft Teams
NHS Scotland has rolled out Microsoft Teams to more than 160,000 workers, including health boards and those on the frontline in hospitals, NHS24, Health Protection Scotland and the Scottish Ambulance Service. Read.

Education
08/05/2020
Learning During Lockdown
Highland Council is one of the first local authorities in Scotland to recognise and develop a Schools Digital Learning Hub which provides a resource for staff, parents and pupils to support home learning.  Read.

Cyber
08/05/2020
Cyber warning issued for key healthcare organisations
Security agencies in the United Kingdom and United States have exposed malicious cyber campaigns targeting organisations involved in the coronavirus response – and given tips to stay safe. Read.

Government
08/05/2020
Cross sector initiative getting people online
A new £5 million programme will offer an internet connection, training and support, and a laptop or tablet to vulnerable people who are not already online during the response to COVID-19. Read.

Companies
07/05/2020
Relish is the brainchild of serial tech entrepreneur Lesley Eccles funding now totals £7.2m.
Relish, which has a key presence in Edinburgh, is the brainchild of serial tech entrepreneur Lesley Eccles, and is “on a mission to improve all human relationships”. It says it teaches active mindfulness, relationship skills, and “helps you learn new insights into yourself and your partner”, with new ideas for quarantine-compliant date nights. Read.

Education
07/05/2020
CodeClan have responded quickly in response to COVID-19 and adapting their campuses to virtual interactive classrooms.
CodeClan, Scotland’s national digital skills academy has pivoted to a virtual interactive classroom model via teams from its Edinburgh, Glasgow and Inverness campuses. Read.

Companies
06/05/2020
AgriTech partnership boost to City Region’s data innovation ambitions
The University of Edinburgh’s Roslin Innovation Centre (RIC) and Deep Science Ventures (DSV) have partnered to deliver Scotland’s first agricultural venture builder. Read.

Companies
06/05/2020
Leading Scottish Charities distribute hundreds of laptops and devices
HUNDREDS of Scotland’s most deprived families who are enduring daunting self-isolating home environments are benefiting from receiving vital communication lifelines including laptops and tablets after two of Scotland’s largest children’s charities joined forces with the Scottish Government’s ‘No One Left Behind’ scheme. Read.

Legal
01/05/2020
Solicitors Offer Free 20 Minutes Consultation for Tech Companies
In an attempt to help address some of the many challenges and difficulties posed currently by the Coronavirus pandemic, BTO’s Intellectual Property & Technology Team is offering an initial 20 minute consultation free of charge. Read.

Health
01/05/2020
Data harnessed to reveal Covid-19 spread in real time
A study that uses patient data to track the progress of the Covid-19 pandemic in near real time across Scotland is set to launch. The project – which has been awarded £500,000 of funding from the Medical Research Council – will also be able to track the effectiveness of any new treatments or vaccines. Read.

Health
01/05/2020
What COVID-19 tells us about strengthening global public health systems
Covid-19 is not the first time the international health systems have been tested for their resilience, and neither it would be the last time. The prime objective of every health system is to improve health (i.e. physical, mental and social wellbeing and not merely the absence of disease or infirmity) of its population with the means/resources in hand. Read.

Business
30/04/2020
ScotlandIS survey reveals Business still see opportunities for growth during pandemic
ScotlandIS has released the annual tech sector industry survey today which shows Scotland’s digital technology sector continued to grow in 2019 with an increase in sales and profit margins.
Despite Covid-19, many firms have identified opportunities for growth over the next nine months. Approximately one third of those surveyed believe business opportunities will rise due to increased or new demands related to Covid-19, particularly in cloud services, digital connectivity, remote working technology, and digital health solutions. Read.

Health
29/04/2020
The Scottish Tech Army initiative, designed to match Scottish tech professionals currently furloughed or unemployed due to the coronavirus pandemic with COVID-19 projects, is being rolled out in Scotland.
Instead, they can now use their skills and experience to support public sector organisations in developing digital projects to help tackle the outbreak and the management of the recovery process. Read.

Infrastructure
29/04/2020
Responding to recent reports of attacks on telecommunications infrastructure and network companies’ staff being targeted, Derek Boyd, interim director at The Scotland 5G Centre, said:
“Attacks on telecommunications masts and staff being abused demonstrate how the misinformation being spread about 5G online can have serious and dangerous consequences in the real world – particularly given the critical role they play during lockdown”. Read.

Education
28/04/2020
Robotical, the edtech start-up is working to deliver education to previously disadvantaged youths in South Africa.
The project will see Marty kicking, dancing and walking into townships across South Africa and is aimed at reaching children in South Africa’s poorest areas, making coding and programming accessible for all children across the country. Read.

Cyber
23/04/2020
CENSIS IoT Cyber Challenge Accelerator 2020
CENSIS is offering up to five Scottish-based companies or individuals a package of co-ordinated growth support over several months to help them accelerate an IoT cyber security or resilience product or service into the market. This event is part of the Scottish Enterprise and Scottish Government supported cyber challenge programme, launched by Kate Forbes MSP at the 6th CENSIS Technology Summit. Read.


Cyber
23/04/2020
UK ‘Cyber Aware’ campaign launched to combat cyber security threats.
The NCSC recently launched their ‘Cyber Aware’ programme, which aims to provide advice to businesses and encourage citizens to report suspected email scammers. 
In the last two months, the cyber-specialised agency, which is part of GCHQ, has taken down 471 coronavirus-related fraudulent online shops, 555 sites spreading malware and 200 more dedicated to phishing, and 832 frauds in which an advance payment is sought on the promise of the return of a large sum of money. Read.

Data & AI
23/04/2020
The ICO to be less rigid when enforcing GDPR breaches.
The UK’s data regulator says it will relax its regulatory approach to enforcement during the COVID-19 crisis, in line with a commitment to being “pragmatic” and “proportionate”.
This flexibility allows the regulator to “recognise and engage with the unique challenges the country is facing”. “The data protection laws contain checks and balances to ensure that personal information can flow and be effectively utilised for healthcare.” Read.

Education
23/04/2020
Skills for tomorrow
As part of its Skills for tomorrow programme, BT has teamed up with Computing at School (CAS), to launch a range of activities, designed to assist parents develop their children’s digital skills at home.The series of activities is based on the Barefoot Computing programme, a programme funded and managed by BT in partnership with CAS, to help primary school teachers deliver free, curriculum-aligned lessons in fun and relatable ways. Read.

Data & AI
23/04/2020
Developing Scotland’s Artificial Intelligence (AI) Strategy – be part of it.
The steering committee would welcome your response to the consultation questions, on the proposed definition of AI for the purposes of the strategy, the draft vision for AI and the proposed approach to fostering the adoption of AI in Scotland. These points are outlined in detail within the scoping document. Scotland’s AI Strategy scoping document.
The Scottish Government Consultation closes on 8th May 2020. Read.

Health
23/04/2020
Glasgow tech firm CitrusLabs match suitable volunteer patients with scientists testing potential Covid-19 treatments
CitrusLabs is offering its services for free to organisations and researchers trying to find vaccines and drugs to treat Covid-19.  The company has helped with 200 clinical trials worldwide over the last five years. Read.

Health
23/04/2020
Omega Diagnostics has signed an agreement to make up to 46,000 Covid-19 antibody tests a day.
The Clackmannanshire-based business this week announced a material transfer agreement to allow Mologic access to its facility in Littleport, Cambridgeshire, to manufacture its Elisa test.
The test has been part-funded by the UK Government and is designed to indicate whether people have had the Covid-19 virus, may have immunity to it and could therefore return to relatively normal life. Read.

Infrastructure
23/04/2020
The Centre for Digital Built Britain (CDBB) – BIM Interoperability Expert Group Report
CDBB, a partner in the Construction Innovation Hub, has published The Building Information Modelling (BIM) Interoperability Report for public consultation. BIM Interoperability Expert Group.
It forms part of the Construction Innovation Hub’s work to grow the digital economy for the construction and infrastructure sector, and to develop and promote digital ways of working as enablers of greater whole-life-value in the built environment. Read.

Justice
23/04/2020
Civil justice in Scotland is now online!
The Scottish Courts and Tribunals Service has announced that new systems have been set up to maintain civil justice during the lockdown. Operating as a virtual court under the CISCO WebEx video conferencing platform, with a three-judge bench. Two channels will be available to each party for counsel and instructing solicitors.
Multiple channels will also be available to media and interested persons to view the entire virtual court proceedings. Read.

Justice
23/04/2020
Blogger’s appeal against Kezia Dugdale ruling heard in virtual courtroom
Three of Scotland’s most senior judges have heard arguments in a virtual courtroom about a pro-independence blogger’s alleged defamation by Kezia Dugdale. In a first in Scottish legal history, the panel met separately via video link while cases were put forward in the online Court of Session’s Inner House appeal.
Judges Lord Carloway, Lord Menzies and Lord Brodie heard the appeal via video link on Tuesday. Read.

Legal
23/04/2020
Free Legal Consultation for businesses who have taken up a (CBILS)
GILSON GRAY has announced it will provide free legal advice to Scottish businesses which have obtained offers of loans under the Government’s Coronavirus Business Interruption Loan Scheme (CBILS) programme. Read.

Business
23/04/2020
SnapDragon Monitoring wins Queen’s Award for Innovation
Online brand protection company, SnapDragon Monitoring, has received a Queen’s Award for Innovation, one of Britain’s most prestigious business accolades. 
SnapDragon Monitoring is one of just eight in Scotland to receive the honour, which in 50 years has rarely been awarded to technology enterprises. The company was born out of its founder’s own experience of fighting fakes when her baby-product was counterfeited and her thriving business brought to near ruin. Read.


Infrastructure
23/04/2020
Our infrastructure supports our communities, public services, wellbeing and economic growth. It encompasses all assets that enable the delivery of public services, including schools, hospitals, transport, digital connectivity and housing.
Improving its performance is a key enabler for the Scottish Government’s ambitions for a sustainable and inclusive net zero carbon economy. This ambition is relevant to both new and existing infrastructure, as most of the underlying infrastructure that will be used in 30 years’ time already exists today. Read.

Infrastructure
23/04/2020
The construction world is being reshaped by digital technology. Greater understanding of the data behind the design is leading to higher standards of infrastructure than ever before. At the centre of this transformation is building information modelling (BIM), which is enabling construction firms, architects, contractors and companies from right across the supply chain, to gather better data, work closer together – even enabling design problems to be fixed almost before they’ve occurred. Read.

Business
13/04/2020
Following on from the recent FutureScot exclusive that Huawei have confirmed 10,000 sq ft of Grade A office space in central Edinburgh, (surpassing their investment in  Manchester’s MediaCityUK), Chinese smartphone component designer AAC Technologies is to set up an R&D centre in Edinburgh creating 10+ jobs in addition to the possible 80 at Huawei. 

The move may not provoke as much concern with Nicola Sturgeon and Kate Forbes as it has in Westminster or Washington as Huawei has already forged close partnerships with Police Scotland and with Edinburgh and Napier Universities. 

Government:
14/04/2020
The Scottish Digital Academy recently hosted an online event to understand what people working in Scottish public services are experiencing in these extraordinary times, with the sudden need for lots of us to work from home.

Local Government: 
14/04/2020
The Digital Office for Scottish Local Government has contracted Agilisys to deliver a digital system for Scotland’s Councils to procure support for community resilience hubs set up to respond to the coronavirus. Named Helping Hands, the solution will be available to Scottish local authorities as they aim to coordinate efforts to support 200,000 vulnerable people through the pandemic.

IoT:
15/04/2020
IoT Scotland is the UK’s most advanced IoT network and can now be accessed free of charge by organisations responding to challenges raised by COVID-19. Network coverage is available in cities including Glasgow, Edinburgh, Stirling, Dundee and Perth, and in areas including the Scottish Borders, Argyll & Bute, Inverness, Aberdeenshire, and Stirlingshire.

Third Sector:  
15/04/2020
SCVO Digital are leading the No One Left behind Digital Scotland  programme, working with partners from the public, private and voluntary sector to address the three key barriers to being online: access to a device, connectivity and skills/confidence. Read Aaron Slater’s top tips for promoting digital participation. 

Security:
15/04/2020
One of Scotland’s leading ethical hackers has warned against using video conferencing and to to take precautions against cybercrime. Declan Doyle, from the Scottish Centre for Business Resilience, told a webinar on Wednesday that confidential conversations could be snooped upon. Jude McCorry and  the SBRC team have hosted three webinars this week all of which are well worth catching in this new world of ubiquitous webinars.  

Security:
16/04/2020
New research published supports the SBRC warning outlining how cybercriminals are capitalising on the shift to remote work amid COVID-19. Ransomware attacks have increased by 148% over baseline levels from February – March 2020 with notable spikes on key days in the COVID-19 news cycle, such as a 66% increase when the US announced the first death in the US. Read the full report from VMware Carbon Black on the FutureScot website. 

Investment:
17/04/2020
Edinburgh-based Par Equity has been enlisted by British Business Investments to allocate £15 million of funding for scale-ups as a partner in the Regional Angels Programme. The cash from BBI – a commercial subsidiary of the British Business Bank – will be added to £60 million being invested by Par Equity in businesses mainly in Scotland, the north of England, and Northern Ireland.