The rise of so-called "hacktivism" has helped the IT group NCC, with pre-tax profits rising a fifth to £17.3m in the year to the end of May.
Rob Cotton, the chief executive of the Manchester-based group, said its two operations were "continuing to see predictable long-term expansion". He said the rise of hacking and state-sponsored cyber attacks "are providing considerable opportunities for us to develop" the assurance arm, which provides clients protection against online breaches. NCC also provides escrow services worldwide. Sales at the division rose 8 per cent last year.