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Innovation

GCHQ tech sale discussions are 'at early stage'

The government has started discussions with its listening post about how GCHQ could sell products and services to the private sector, the intelligence agency has said.UK security minister Baroness Pauline Neville-Jones told the Commons Science and Technology Committee on Wednesday that the government was mulling the idea.
Written by Tom Espiner, Contributor on

The government has started discussions with its listening post about how GCHQ could sell products and services to the private sector, the intelligence agency has said.

UK security minister Baroness Pauline Neville-Jones told the Commons Science and Technology Committee on Wednesday that the government was mulling the idea.

GCHQ told ZDNet UK on Thursday that it was in talks with the government as to how its products and services could be commercialised.

"The proposal to which the minister refers is at a very early stage of discussion and we cannot comment any further at this time," said a GCHQ spokesman.

GCHQ has a history of making secret cryptographic and signals intelligence breakthroughs, including the invention of public key cryptography, now used in most online financial transactions.

Neville-Jones told the committee that the proposal was "a live issue", according to the BBC.

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