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The European Commission today announced the launch of a public private partnership in cybersecurity, with a pledge to invest €450 million under its research and innovation programme.
In a statement, the EC said the overall partnership is expected “to trigger €1.8 billion of investment by 2020”, with market players, represented by the European Cyber Security Organisation (ECSO), set to invest three times more than the European body.
It will also include participation from national, regional and local public administrations, research centres and academia, and is designed to build cyber security solutions for various sectors, including energy, health, transport and finance, while “fostering cooperation”.
The Commission highlighted the growing threat businesses face in cybersecurity, and cited a survey which showed at least 80 per cent of European companies had been hit by one incident over the last year, while security incidents across all industries worldwide rose by 38 per cent in 2015.
“There is a major opportunity for our cybersecurity industry to compete in a fast growing global market,” said Gunther Oettinger, commissioner for the digital economy and society. “We call on our member states and all cybersecurity bodies to strengthen cooperation and pool their knowledge, information and expertise to increase Europe’s cyber resilience.”
Although details of how the partnership will work are vague at the moment, the Commission opened up on how it might look to tackle “fragmentation” in the EU cybersecurity market.
In one example, it may review possible European certification frameworks for an ICT company to sell security products and services in member states, where it today may need to undergo different certification processes.
It said it will also look at how to help innovative European SMEs in niche markets scale up their businesses and have easier access to finance under its investment plan.
Andrus Ansip, VP for the Digital Single Market, added that “without trust and security” the EU’s Digital Single Market Strategy cannot be achieved.