News Item

Vision for a Stronger Cybersecurity Community going forward – an ENISA industry event

On 12 June 2019, ENISA and the Representation of the Free State of Bavaria to the European Union organised an industry event in Brussels.

Published on June 13, 2019

Pictured from left to right: Falk Hermann, (Rohde & Schwarz), Axel Deininger (Secunet), Ilias Chantzos (Symantec), Brian Honan (BH Consulting), Udo Helmbrecht (ENISA), Steve Purser (ENISA), Ursula Pachl (BEUC), Oscar Tapp Scotting(UK), Aidan Ryan (ENISA)

The year 2019 already marks a challenging year for the European Union. The EU is facing multiple geopolitical challenges simultaneously, such as Brexit, but also cybersecurity related challenges such as maintaining EU’s digital sovereignty and securing European elections from outside interference. The EU is confronted with finding the right balance between the digital transformation of our society and preserving our core democratic values.

We must ensure that the EU ICT industry retains and develops essential cybersecurity technological capacities to secure its EU Digital Single Market. The Union must be in a position to autonomously secure its digital assets and to compete on global cybersecurity market. In 2018 the Union was a net importer of cybersecurity products and solutions and largely depending on non-European providers. The cybersecurity market is globally a 600 billion EUR market that is expected to grow in the next five years on average by approximately 17% in terms of sales, number of companies and employment.[1]

However, the European ICT industry is falling behind in the global competition race. Sandwiched between the giants of the ICT industry in the US and China, Europe is struggling to keep up and is losing hold of its own digital sovereignty. Surprisingly, this is while the EU and EU Member States are among the most digitally developed world economies. [2] 

Digital development should work for and not against the European market. Success requires risk. New business and regulatory frameworks need to be produced that anticipate the evolution of the market over the next 5 to 10 years and lay the groundwork for the success of the European ICT industry. In an increasingly inter-connected world, the European ICT sector should be strengthened and stimulated to improve its competitiveness in the global marketplace, as well as in the domestic marketplace.

In this context, the ‘Vision for a stronger cybersecurity community going forward’ event aims to look at a number of topics including the regulation of the internet and social media specifically with speeches from Thomas Myrup Kristensen, Facebook's Managing Director of EU Affairs and Oscar Tapp Scotting, the UK Government’s Online Harms Deputy Director.

Other speakers included Brian Honan from BH Consulting who spoke on threat intelligence, Jean-Pierre Quémard, President of Alliance pour la Confiance Numérique (ACN) on European competiveness and Gabi Dreo Rodosek from the CODE Research Institute at Universität der Bundeswehr München who expressed her concern for the lack of European market leaders in R&D.

Finally, a panel discussed the regulatory agenda for the new European Commission and the newly elected European Parliament, which provided preliminary recommendations from the industry on future potential policy initiatives.

ENISA, Executive Director, Udo Helmbrecht stated that “in an average European office, ICT software and hardware are generally built and developed in Asia and USA. Where Europe once led the world in the deployment of initially analogue and then mobile digital technology such as GSM, Europe is now debating the appropriateness of the supply of 5G technology from non-European suppliers. Traditional EU mobile handset manufacturers are struggling to compete with major Asian and US suppliers. We should emphasise to people European values such as trustworthiness and security of ICT products and services.”


Since 2015, ENISA has been organising its Industry Events in an effort to stimulate the development of the EU network and information security (NIS) industry. The event aims to improve collaboration between ENISA and the private sector particularly SMEs.

ENISA is celebrating its 15th anniversary and on 27 June 2019 its new and permanent mandate will enter into force. The new mandate includes a role for ENISA in certification but also that ENISA will actively support the European Commission and EU Member States in the development, implementation and review of cybersecurity policy. Therefore following the important changes in the European Parliament and European Commission, ENISA takes the opportunity to discuss the future of European cybersecurity with its industry stakeholders.

[1] Proposal for a European Cybersecurity Competence Network and Centre (September 2018):

[2] European Commission, “I-DESI 2018”, 26 October 2018. Available at:


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