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January 21, 2013

European Commission proposes new legislation on cyber security

By 2016, the EU Internet economy is expected to be more than €800bn

By CBR Staff Writer

European Commission (EC) has proposed a new legislation which requires major tech firms like Google and Facebook to report any security breaches to local cybersecurity agencies or face sanctions like fines.

The new legislation, if passed in the Parliament, will force EU’s 27 member states to establish local cybersecurity agencies to implement high security standards on their respective online networks.

As per the proposed legislation, social networks, e-commerce firms and large online platforms which have access to users’ data should report any server issues and security breaches to the local agencies once they are set up.

EC vice president Neelie Kroes was quoted the Financial Times as saying that, "We are raising the game with this directive."

"We are creating incentives for private companies to improve their track records in network security, and helping national governments to use the learning from this to improve overall national capabilities," Kroes said.

"Cyber security is about protecting our values. We don’t want a militarised internet. We need greater security capabilities because we want a peaceful and open internet that is a vehicle for free expression."

Last year, Kroes said that cloud computing could help propel Europe out of the economic strife it finds itself in.

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By 2016, the EU Internet economy is expected to be more than €800bn; over 5% of GDP.

In November 2012, MEPs warned that reducing defence budgets as well as downgrading security policies could lead to a strategic decline in the EU.

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