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European Cybercrime Centre To Open On Friday

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Europol hopes to gather intelligence and skills for the benefit of all member states

The European Cybercrime Centre will commence operations on Friday 11 January, based in the Hague in the Netherlands.

The Europol-hosted initiative will focus on protecting businesses and individuals from cyber attacks by bringing together expertise and pooling data resources from across Europe to support local criminal investigations.

A cybercrime help desk for EU countries’ law enforcement units will be at the centre of the operation, delivering “high-level technical, analytical and forensic expertise in EU joint investigations”. Forensics is one area where police, especially in the UK, have been heavily criticised.

European Cybercrime Centre coming

security malware - Shutterstock: © Marcio Jose Bastos SilvaThe European Cybercrime Centre will also run training and R&D, producing threat assessments for nation states to take advantage of, whilst working closely with the private sector.

“In combatting cybercrime, with its borderless nature and huge ability for the criminals to hide, we need a flexible and adequate response,” said Troels Oerting, head of the European Cybercrime Centre.

“The European Cybercrime Centre is designed to deliver this expertise as a centre for operational investigative and forensic support, but also through its ability to mobilise all relevant resources in EU member states to mitigate and reduce the threat from cybercriminals wherever they operate from.”

The centre was announced back in November 2010, but will be opened this Friday by EU commissioner for home affairs Cecilia Malmström.

The centre should help provide some much-needed collaboration across Europe, where attackers can take advantage of the borderless Internet to carry out, and hide, their illicit campaigns. “As businesses and consumers alike have experienced recently, cyber attacks have been evolving at almost unimaginable speed.  They have the potential to ‘threaten real loss of property and life’ with malicious attackers targeting critical systems,” Raj Samani, CTO in the UK for McAfee, told TechWeekEurope.

“Establishing  mechanisms, people, education, skills, thinking and policies to address the opportunities and threats that cyber represents is of paramount importance.”

The European Commission released the below infographic detailing what it hopes the European Cybercrime Centre will achieve:

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