Keynote: Why was ENISA created? presented at First 2007

by Andrea Pirotti,

Summary : NENISA was conceived in the spring of 2001, at a time when there was only limited co-operation and information exchange between the Members States of the European Union (EU), governments and industry in the field of Information Security. At the same time, the paramount importance of ensuring the continuing functioning of the Information Society was becoming increasingly clear, given its growing impact on everyday life, business and the Digital Economy.
ENISA was created to bridge gaps, to promote good practice and to spread a culture of security across Europe. By using an –open method of co-ordination– between the Member States and industry, ENISA is facilitating and contributing to a significant improvement in the exchange of Information Security knowledge and best practices between the Member States. The Agency also acts as a spokesman on Network and Information Security (NIS) matters within the EU.
Why is NIS important?
It is not necessary to address the importance of Network and Information Security, as the audience at the FIRST AGM is fully aware of that. Just to sum up our mission:
Is a Centre of Excellence for Member States and EU Institutions in Network and Information Security
Is a switchboard of information on Good Practice
Facilitates contacts between EU institutions, the Members States and private business and industry
In these ways, ENISA contributes towards the modernisation of Europe and helps secure the smooth functioning of the Digital Economy and the Information Society.
ENISA and the CERT communities
CERTs in Europe identified very early on that co-operation was crucial for successful incident response as attacks from the Internet are global by nature and call for teamwork across traditional borders. CERTs collaborate in communities like Terenas Task Force CSIRT (TF-CSIRT) and the European Government CERT Group (EGC). Such communities are essential as rich sources of information, tools and activities for network and information security. In its role as a facilitator and information broker, ENISA promotes CERT co-operation and helps these communities grow stronger
— in Europe and beyond!
ENISA acknowledges the importance of the FIRST as a worldwide facilitator of CERT cooperation. This is the reason why, since September 2006, ENISA is a Liaison Member of FIRST. The potential benefit is mutual:
FIRST acts as a premier provider of (not only) CERT related security information and assembles under its umbrella a world-spanning network of Computer Emergency Response Teams, Hard- and Software Vendors and other security experts. ENISAs experts can learn much from the expertise and good practices collected and provided by FIRST.
ENISA brings together the public and the private sectors to join forces in their efforts for a more secure Internet - a role that it shares with the FIRST. ENISA also acts as a contact point for the EU Member States and all EU Bodies, and acts as a premier channel for NIS related information to these stakeholders. So ENISA is the most obvious body to bring FIRSTs important messages and information to otherwise impossible to reach audiences.
ENISA will be open for further collaboration with FIRST – in the field of CERT cooperation and beyond!