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European Cybersecurity Month: ‘Think Before U Click'

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The ninth edition of the European Cybersecurity Month began on 1 October and will run for the entire month of October under the motto ‘Think Before U Click'. This is an annual awareness campaign organized by the Commission, the European Union Agency for Cybersecurity (ENISA) and over 300 partners in the member states, including local authorities, governments, universities, think tanks, NGOs and professional associations. Hundreds of activities, such as conferences, workshops, training sessions, presentations, webinars and online campaigns, will take place across Europe this year to promote cybersecurity among citizens and organisations and to provide up-to-date online security information through awareness raising and sharing of good practices.

A Europe Fit for the Digital Age Executive Vice-President Margrethe Vestager said: “We will not use technology if we don't trust it; and trust comes from feeling safe. That's why cybersecurity is really central to our digitalisation, and to the use of technology. Especially nowadays when due to the pandemic we have been doing so many things online: working, learning, shopping, and more. By adopting good cybersecurity habits, we are building a safe and secure digital life.”

Promoting our European Way of Life Vice President Margaritis Schinas said: “Cyber-attacks put at risk our businesses, our critical infrastructures, our data, the functioning of our democracies. Cyber criminals exploit the slightest vulnerability in our digital environment. The European Cybersecurity Month campaign aims at helping everyone acquire the necessary skills to shield ourselves and our way of life against cyber threats. The campaign's motto ‘Think Before U Click' is especially this year more relevant than ever.”

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Cyber awareness is one of the angles of the EU Cybersecurity Strategy announced in December last year. More information is available in this ENISA press release. Information about the events taking place across the member states is available in this interactive map, and awareness-raising material is available on the dedicated website. Follow the campaign on Twitter @CyberSecMonth with hashtags #CyberSecMonth and #ThinkB4Uclick, and on Facebook @CyberSecMonthEU.

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Executive Vice President Vestager, Vice President Schinas and Commissioner Breton at the International Cybersecurity Forum in Lille

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A Europe Fit for the Digital Age Executive Vice President Margrethe Vestager, for and Promoting our European Way of Life Vice President Margaritis Schinas will participate in the International Cybersecurity Forum that is taking place until 9 September in Lille, France. The forum is one of the most important events in Europe on cybersecurity gathering European cybersecurity professionals and stakeholders to reflect and exchange views.

Vice-President Schinas delivered a keynote speech on 8 September in which he focused on the impact of the increasing number of sophisticated cyber-attacks on the daily lives of citizens and businesses. He also explained the importance of cybersecurity as part of the European Security Union.

Executive Vice President Vestager will participate in a fireside chat on 9 September where she will discuss cybersecurity as well as broader aspects of trust in the digital transformation and digital society, such as Artificial Intelligence (AI), ethics and digital identity. Finally, Internal Market Commissioner Thierry Breton will close the conference with a video message highlighting the EU Cybersecurity Strategy.

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A key component of Shaping Europe's Digital Future, the Recovery Plan for Europe  and the EU Security Union Strategy, the EU Cybersecurity Strategy aims to harness and strengthen all available tools and resources in the EU to ensure that European citizens and businesses are well protected, both online and offline, against increasing cyber threats and incidents. It was presented in December 2020 by the Commission and the High Representative of the Union for Foreign Affairs and Security Policy. Furthermore, in June 2021, the Commission laid out practical steps to build a new Joint Cyber Unit, which aims at bringing together resources and expertise available to the EU and its member states to effectively prevent, deter and respond to mass cyber incidents and crises.

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Investment Plan for Europe supports development of next-generation cyber security platform

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The European Investment Bank (EIB) has signed a €15 million financing deal with Dutch cybersecurity company EclecticIQ, a leader in threat intelligence, hunting and response technology and services. The project is backed by a guarantee from the European Fund for Strategic Investments (EFSI), the main pillar of the Investment Plan for Europe. The agreement will give EclecticIQ access to the funding it needs to further accelerate the development of its cybersecurity platform and expand internationally in a strategically important and rapidly growing market.

Economy Commissioner Paolo Gentiloni said: “As more and more business operations move online, strengthening cybersecurity is becoming ever more important. This support from the EIB, backed by the Investment Plan for Europe, will help EclecticIQ to further grow its activity in this crucial sector, developing its product portfolio and offering clients suitable solutions to effectively counter cyberthreats.”

The press release is available online.

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Cybersecurity: All EU member states commit to build a quantum communication infrastructure

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With the latest signature by Ireland of the political declaration to boost European capabilities in quantum technologies, cybersecurity and industrial competitiveness, all Member States have now committed to work together, along with the European Commission and the European Space Agency, to build the EuroQCI, a secure quantum communication infrastructure that will span the whole EU. Such high-performing, secure communications networks will be essential to meeting Europe's cybersecurity needs in the years to come. A Europe fit for the Digital Age Executive Vice President Margrethe Vestager said: “I am very happy to see all EU Member States come together to sign the EuroQCI declaration – European Quantum Communication infrastructure initiative - a very solid basis for Europe's plans to become a major player in quantum communications. As such, I encourage them all to be ambitious in their activities, as strong national networks will be the foundation of the EuroQCI.”

Internal Market Commissioner Thierry Breton added: “As we have recently seen, cybersecurity is more than ever a crucial component of our digital sovereignty. I am very pleased to see that all member states are now part of the EuroQCI initiative, a key component of our forthcoming secure connectivity initiative, which will allow all Europeans to have access to protected, reliable communication services.”

The EuroQCI will be part of a wider Commission action to launch a satellite-based secure connectivity system that will make high-speed broadband available everywhere in Europe. This plan will provide reliable, cost-effective connectivity services with enhanced digital security. As such, the EuroQCI will complement existing communication infrastructures with an additional layer of security based on the principles of quantum mechanics – for example, by providing services based on quantum key distribution, a highly secure form of encryption. You can find more information here.

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