Four European Union agencies have signed a memorandum of understanding (MoU) to establish a cooperation framework for cyber security and defence.

The EU agencies for cyber security (Enisa), defence, policing (Europol) and the computer emergency response team for EU institutions, agencies and bodies (Cert-EU) have signed the MoU.

The agreement is aimed at reducing duplicate efforts and ensuring the best possible use of resources by the four organisations, focusing on five areas of cooperation – exchange of information, education and training, cyber exercises, technical cooperation and strategic and administrative matters.

The agreement also allows for cooperation in other areas identified as mutually important by the four organisations.

Threats don’t bulk at borders

Federica Mogherini, head of the European Defence Agency, said: “Cyber space threats do not know of national borders. Cooperation among member states, but also at European level, is therefore essential.

“Europe is stronger when it tackles threats together, in a common and coordinated approach. And this is exactly where this MoU is key and where the added value of the European Union lies: working together, joining forces, putting the experiences and the knowledge of all at the service of our citizens’ security.”

Andrus Ansip, vice-president for the digital single market, said: “We can face cyber threats successfully if we have in place a functioning exchange of information, we have strong technical capabilities and we work on basic cyber hygiene. Better cooperation between these EU agencies will lead to this result.”

Dimitris Avramopoulos, commissioner for migration, home affairs and citizenship, said: “The threats against both our physical and virtual worlds are becoming increasingly connected. This is why increasing cyber security is one of the priorities of the European Union.

“But we can only do this effectively through stronger cooperation and joint actions, where our operational agencies, like Europol, can play a critical role with the expertise they bring to the table in support of our member states.”

Julian King, commissioner for the security union, said: “The cross-border nature of the cyber threat means that cooperation has never been more important. This improved collaboration between Enisa, EDA, Europol’s European Cyber Crime Centre (EC3) and Cert-EU will help us to strengthen our cyber resilience, build effective deterrence and help deliver credible cyber defence and international cooperation.”

Source: ComputerWeekly