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Cybersecurity: Towards an Enhanced Action

In 2018, the European Union represented 26% of the global cybersecurity market while it was the location for only 14% of the top 500 global cybersecurity providers, compared to 75% for the Americas, 7% for Israel and 4% for Asia.

2019-2020: focus on cybersecurity
After the adoption of the Information and Network Security Doctrine (NIS doctrine) in 2016 and a certain period of latency, the EU finally realizes the importance of the security and strategic challenges related to this issue and decides to take action. On 10 September, President-elect Ursula Von der Leyen focused on cyber security and the creation of a digital Union, announced: “We have to make our single market fit for the digital age, we need to make the most of artificial intelligence and big data, we have to improve on cybersecurity and we have to work hard for our technological sovereignty.”

This statement reflects the establishment of a joint political action for cybersecurity with the aim of strengthening cooperation and harmonisation between Member States. Three measures should be hilighted:

– the adoption of the Cybersecurity Act, a regulation under the authority of the European Network and Information Security Agency (ENISA) by the Council of the European Union on 7 June 2019, marks a significant step forward for the EU’s strategic and security autonomy;
– the creation of the European Defence Industrial Development Programme (EDIDP) in March 2019, enabling the launch of calls for proposals in 2020 with a total budget of €182 million;
– the reopening, in March 2020, of several calls for proposals with a co-financing up to €286 million for cybersecurity actors (Horizon 2020 Secure societies)

Any short-term opportunities?
A call for proposals is open until 11 November 2019 under the Connecting Europe Facility (CEF-T) programme, offering a co-financing of up to €10 million, in particular to national computer security incidents response teams (CSIRTs) and essential service operators (OSEs) in telecommunications and cybersecurity.

Regarding the new programming, the European Parliament and the Council of the EU have reached a provisional agreement on the very first Digital Europe programme with an overall budget of €2 billion. Work programmes should be published at the end of 2020 for calls planned in 2021.



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