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European Commission reviews Member States' protection against cyber attacks

In a report taking stock of progress made in implementing its EU-wide 2009 action plan, the European Commission praises Member States' efforts to protect critical information infrastructures from cyber attacks and disruptions (see IP/09/494). However, the report underlines that further action in this area is required, notably to establish an efficient network of Computer Emergency Response Teams (CERTs) by 2012.

The key findings of the report are:

* A majority of Member States have now set up national/governmental Computer Emergency Response Teams (CERTs),
* Member States' cooperation is improving as a result of the regular exchanges on good policy practices via the European Forum for Member States, which was set up in 2009.
* Establishing the European Public-Private Partnership for Resilience (EP3R) was key to engaging the private sector in increasing the level of security of the digital environment and developing a solid information security market in Europe.

The report outlines the way forward to reinforce international cooperation in this area. The Commission will engage with Member States and the private sector at national, European and international level by:

* Establishing CERTs in the remaining Member States and for the EU institutions by 2012,
* Developing a European cyber-incident contingency plan by 2012, which will be based on national cyber incident contingency plans;
* Organizing both regular exercises at national level (only 12 Member States have done so to date), and pan-European cyber incident exercises like the 2010 exercise ‘Cyber Europe’,
* Promoting globally-agreed principles for the stability and resilience of the Internet,
* Establishing strategic partnerships in this area with key non-EU countries (notably with the US), as well as promoting the discussion in international fora such as the G8,
* Seeking the best governance strategies for emerging technologies with a global impact, such as cloud computing.

The full text of the Communication on Critical Information Infrastructure Protection ‘Achievements and next steps: towards global cyber-security’ can be read here.

•Date: 5th April 2011 • Region: UK/Europe •Type: Article •Topic: ISM news

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