Business security

EC proposals to improve cybersecurity

The European Commission today unveiled two new measures as part of its fight against cybercrime.  The first measure proposes new criminal offences relating to

  • the use of malicious software (botnets etc) for committing offences,
  • illegal interception of informations systems

and strengthens penalites for such crimes. The EU also proposes an improvement of European criminal justice/police cooperation by strengthening the existing structure of 24/7 contact points, including an obligation to answer within 8 hours to urgent request and the obligation to collect basic statistical data on cybercrimes.

The world is in dire need of general improvement in respect of international cooperation. The UK has it’s own Police Central eCrime Unit but the

Business piracy Regs

European Commission wants single regulatory framework for music copyright

As part of the whole Digital Economy Bill/Digital Britain debate one of the complaints being levelled at the music industry is that it makes it too expensive and difficult to make music legally available online at an economic price. 

Part of this is the fact that every country has different copyright licensing laws and channels such as Yahoo, AOL et al find it difficult to negotiate a satisfactory arrangement that would allow them to operate on their international cross border scale. 

The EU has now come off the fence and decided it needsto do something about it and if the Commission gets its way, national collecting societies that manage the rights of online content will have to integrate their systems. Hooray and about time.

You can check out piece on the subject here and a more detailed discussion document dating from October 09 here. What I can’t see is any timescale around this so I suspect I might be getting excited a bit prematurely but lets see how it goes.

broadband Business internet

The European Commission has Issued its Digital Competitiveness Report

The European Commission is claiming the credit for increasing internet usage in Europe.  In its Digital Competitiveness Report, published a few days ago, it said “the number of regular internet users has increased from 43% in 2005 to 56% in 2008”. Apparently it is all down to it’s i2010 Strategy formulated in 2005.

Fair play to them, I say. Next time someone tells me that YouTube, Facebook, myspace, iPlayer et al are responsible for increased internet usage I will know how to respond 🙂

The report also goes on to say that “the market for mobile phones has exceeded 100% penetration — increasing from 84% of the EU population in 2004 to 119% in 2009. This makes Europe the world leader in mobile penetration, as the rates in the US and Japan are around 80%.

Consumers spend more time talking and texting at prices at least 34.5% less than in 2004, including a 70% drop in roaming charges since 2005.”

At least it is fair to give the EC the credit for the drop in roaming charges. It does amuse me, however, to think that you can have over 100% market penetration. I know this means people have two phones but it doesn’t quite sound right does it?

Business internet security

European Commission forecasts 193 Billion Euro cost of cyber attacks on networks

I note that the as cyber attacks on networks become more sophisticated the EC has forecast a 10% – 20% probability that telecoms networks will suffer a major breakdown within the next 10 years.  They have also estimated a potential global cost of 193 billion Euros as a consequence of such a breakdown.

To mitigate against such a scenario the EC is establishing a Public-Private Partnership for Resilience which “will help businesses share information with public authorities to ensure that adequate and consistent levels of preventive detection, emergency and recovery measures are in place in all Member states”.

I’m all in favour of this kind of thing though somewhat sceptical about its likely efficacy.  Industry is more likely in my mind to sort out its own shop through the likes of the IETF and LINX et al.

That said I do think that Government is goingto have to become far more deeply involved than it is in the internet space.  We are seeing it starting to happen and the Digital Britain Report (final report due out in early May which is light speed as far as Government is concerned) is part of this. 

It is easy to see that the potential cost of telecom network disruption could be huge.  I don’t know what the likely cost of last week’s BT fibre break in London is going to be but  just the costs of managing customer complaints would have been significant let alone the costs of the disruption to traffic. 

I missed out on a few news items to comment on last week due to being on holiday.  It’s good to be back though 🙂 .