As of January 4th, the National Security and Investment (NSI) Act has come into force, giving the UK government the power to look into and stop tech-related acquisitions that could be a risk to national security.
Indeed, the Act will then make it mandatory for the Department for Business, Energy, and Industrial Strategy (BEIS) to be aware of certain acquisitions in 17 tech-heavy industries before signing the deal. If it is not done, the acquisition could be declared void and the acquirer could get civil or criminal penalties. The sectors covered by the BEIS include data infrastructure, artificial intelligence, communication, computing hardware, and quantum computing, among others.
By doing so, the new Act will give the government more clarity and efficiency regarding acquisition investments and processes. The government reported that it is expecting no intervention for the majority of acquisitions. Thus, this helps in making sure of the security and transparency of the nation.