Creating Cybersecurity Culture in Europe

03 June 2013 Author: EIFonline

The European Commission, together with the High Representative of the Union for Foreign Affairs and Security Policy, has published a cybersecurity strategy "An Open, Safe and Secure Cyberspace" alongside a Commission proposed directive on network and information security (NIS) early this year. At the moment both the European Parliament and Council are starting their work on the Directive.

EIF’s Dinner Debate ‘Cybersecurity in Europe: what next?’, held on 28 May, offered a timely opportunity to exchange views with various stakeholders on the main aim of these instruments.


Ivailo Kalfin, MEP, EIF Member and cyber security rapporteur for the ITRE committee, chaired this debate. In his introductory remarks he expressed a wish for the Parliament to pass this legislation before its mandate expires in May 2014. 

Listen to Ivailo Kalfin’s opening remarks:

Robert Madelin, Director General of DG CONNECT, European Commission welcomed the growing recognition on the importance of getting digital policy in Europe right; however, he stressed, that the gap between where Europe is now and where it needs to be is wide. He went on to stress that if Europe wants to have a serious NIS policy framework, it needs endorsement from the European Council and the European Parliament in the form of a Directive committing member states to the necessary level of cooperation and investment in resources, similar to the framework now in place for biosecurity. 

Listen to Robert Madelin’s speech:

Speaker Mats Nilsson, Director of GF Technology, Cyber Security Lead at Ericsson, focused on the importance of cyber security and this EU-level initiative, and its foreseeable impact on digital sectors in Europe.

Listen to Mats Nilsson’s speech:

The last speaker, Graham Palmer, Director of Information Security EMEA at Oracle, introduced the audience to his every day work and shared his long experience in efforts to protect companies from cyber attack. He stressed the vital importance of being specific in identifying what an organization  needs to protect as a priority in the cyber space, as well as making sure that there is European level clarity on what needs to be achieved through the proposed NIS directive.

Listen to Graham Palmer’s speech:

Q&A session followed with wide range of questions from the audience including how SMEs should be protected online, US experience in cyber security, and how to achieve a uniform cybersecurity approach in all EU members states.  There was a general recognition that an EU level instrument should serve to focus competent public authorities and organizations on high priority cyber risks, while avoiding the dilution of resources through overly-broad compliance requirements.

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