Members of European Commission (EC) are now discussing how to make cybersecurity more of a priority on their yearly agendas.
Last week, officials gathered at the 2018 EEMA ISSE Conference to talk about the next steps for improving cyber defenses for the good of the European Union (EU).
“From the EC’s perspective, if cybersecurity and data protection are not addressed sufficiently in a satisfactory way, the whole digital economy is in danger,” said Miguel Gonzalez-Sancho, the head of the EC’s unit for cyber technology and capacity building.
Gonzalez-Sancho, who was a keynote speaker at the conference, noted that the quality of cybersecurity varies from country to country, which means the EU has to work on strengthening its more vulnerable areas.
“The threat is global, which means everyone is affected,” he said. “But there are differences in terms of [cyber defence] preparedness, and attackers will always go for the weakest link, putting the whole system at risk, so there is a need to increase resilience to cyber threats and incident response and to do it in a coordinated way.”
The EC will now focus on building EU resilience to cyber attacks, creating effective EU cyber deterrence capability and improving international cooperation on cybersecurity. This would bolster the European Union’s current plans to bolster its cybersecurity through regulation.
European Commission Cybersecurity Research
The EC is also funding research and development projects to help find solutions and improve cooperation between EU nations. The organization has already budgeted €3bn to support the Horizon 2020 and the Connecting Europe Facility programs.
“For the future, the commission has made proposals for the next budget cycle to step up the funding support in cyber security for research and innovation through the Horizon Europe program and the new Digital Europe program, with an overall budget of €9.2bn,” added Gonzalez-Sancho.
The key, he suggests, is to take advantage of the expertise that already exists in the EU and find a way to get all of the European nations to work together despite political and economic differences.
It’s a challenging task, but it’s one that the EC has deemed to be vital for the security of their union.