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UK calls on tech firms to ‘support the people of Israel’

Tech secretary Israel
Israeli flag projected onto Downing Street. Image credit: Number 10 / Flickr

The tech secretary has called on technology companies to lend their “capabilities and expertise” to support Israel against Hamas.

In a letter written to UK tech companies Michelle Donelan, the secretary of state for the Department of Science, Innovation and Technology (DSIT), urged technology firms to rally behind Israel as the conflict in Gaza intensifies.

Donelan’s letter follows an “urgent meeting” with social media companies held by the tech secretary in which she called for them to remove violent content of the numerous recent attacks on Israel conducted by Hamas.

Donelan is now asking firms to “use their technology to support the people of Israel” in the form of financial and humanitarian aid, along with countering misinformation.

“For those companies that haven’t yet started to plan how they can use their services and technology in support I am calling on you, if you can, to leverage your resources, capabilities and expertise to assist Israel.”

Since Saturday, the death toll in Israel has reached 1,200. More than 1,100 people have died in Israeli air strikes on Gaza.

The tech secretary pointed to efforts made by tech companies to support the people of Ukraine following the full-scale invasion from Russian forces as an example of how the sector can provide assistance.

“As we saw when Russia invaded Ukraine, by working together government and the tech sector can make a significant difference to support the economy and people of those countries affected by such barbaric attacks,” Donelan added.

The Russian invasion of Ukraine inspired action from a number of prominent tech firms. Zopa Bank offered sponsorship of work visas for eligible Ukrainian applicants.

Revolut offered to relocate its employees based in Ukraine, as well as making numerous donations to the Red Cross Ukraine appeal.

UKTN understands the government has been in contact with a handful of undisclosed firms to discuss the ways in which they can provide support.