EU to combat "borderless" criminals with new cybercrime centre

EC3 will help coordinate defences across member states

The European Union will launch its cybercrime prevention centre on Friday, sharing expertise between member states in a bid to protect against the growing threat of online attacks.The new European Cybercrime Centre (EC3), led by Europol, will spearhead a "significant shift" in the strategy employed by the EU in tackling cybercrime, adopting a more collaborative approach to combating criminals operating across international borders.Based in The Hague, the cybercrime centre will provide operational support to EU countries, giving access to technical expertise in joint investigations and pooling resources to aid in the prevention of cybercrime and the prosecution of offenders. The focus of the centre will be around protection against illegal online activities carried out by organised crime groups, particularly those targeting e-banking and other online financial activities. Online child sexual exploitation and attacks against critical infrastructure and information systems will also be main priorities.The centre will be tasked with dismantling organised cyber crime networks, as well as gathering related data. A cybercrime helpdesk will also be set up for EU member states' law enforcement units.A budget of 7 million has been earmarked for operational activities, with the centre employing 30 full time staff. Europol has indicated that it will make an additional 10 staff available where necessary.The centre will also facilitate research and development, as well as producing threat assessments, threat forecasts and trend analyses."The Cybercrime Centre will give a strong boost to the EU's capacity to fight cybercrime and defend an internet that is free, open and secure," said EU Commissioner for Home Affairs Cecilia Malmstrm."Cybercriminals are smart and quick in using new technologies for criminal purposes; the EC3 will help us become even smarter and quicker to help prevent and fight their crimes."Troels Oerting, Head of the European Cybercrime Centre, acknowledged the size of the task faced in defending against cyber criminals which are able to ignore international borders that law enforcement agencies must adhere to."In combating cybercrime, with its borderless nature and huge ability for the criminals to hide, we need a flexible and adequate response," Oerting said."The European Cybercrime Centre is designed to deliver this expertise as a fusion centre, 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."Commenting on the launch of the cybercrime centre, David Emm, Senior Regional Researcher at Kaspersky Lab, said that it is vital the EU addresses the borderless nature of cybercrime if it is to keep pace with the agile nature of online crime."Cybercrime is crime 'over the wire'. It is, therefore seen to have no boundaries, allowing cybercriminals to attack anyone who's connected from anywhere in the world," " said Emm."Countries in the developed world have developed a wealth of expertise in dealing with cybercrime over the years. However, any previous response to cybercrime has been implemented locally; and this imposes restrictions on law enforcement agencies."These law enforcement agencies tend not to enjoy the same level of flexibility as those they are trying apprehend."Emm added that the launch of the cybercrime centre and the more inclusive strategy is likely to enhance the ability of authorities to combat online criminal activity."The launch of a European cybercrime centre will definitely have a positive effect, not only in providing a centre of expertise, but in helping to co-ordinate the fight against cybercrime across the EU by providing a common framework for dealing with the problem."

Join the CSO newsletter!

Error: Please check your email address.

Tags Europolsecurityeuropean union

More about EUEuropolKasperskyKaspersky

Show Comments

Featured Whitepapers

Editor's Recommendations

Solution Centres

Stories by Matthew Finnegan

Latest Videos

  • 150x50

    CSO Webinar: Will your data protection strategy be enough when disaster strikes?

    Speakers: - Paul O’Connor, Engagement leader - Performance Audit Group, Victorian Auditor-General’s Office (VAGO) - Nigel Phair, Managing Director, Centre for Internet Safety - Joshua Stenhouse, Technical Evangelist, Zerto - Anthony Caruana, CSO MC & Moderator

    Play Video

  • 150x50

    CSO Webinar: The Human Factor - Your people are your biggest security weakness

    ​Speakers: David Lacey, Researcher and former CISO Royal Mail David Turner - Global Risk Management Expert Mark Guntrip - Group Manager, Email Protection, Proofpoint

    Play Video

  • 150x50

    CSO Webinar: Current ransomware defences are failing – but machine learning can drive a more proactive solution

    Speakers • Ty Miller, Director, Threat Intelligence • Mark Gregory, Leader, Network Engineering Research Group, RMIT • Jeff Lanza, Retired FBI Agent (USA) • Andy Solterbeck, VP Asia Pacific, Cylance • David Braue, CSO MC/Moderator What to expect: ​Hear from industry experts on the local and global ransomware threat landscape. Explore a new approach to dealing with ransomware using machine-learning techniques and by thinking about the problem in a fundamentally different way. Apply techniques for gathering insight into ransomware behaviour and find out what elements must go into a truly effective ransomware defence. Get a first-hand look at how ransomware actually works in practice, and how machine-learning techniques can pick up on its activities long before your employees do.

    Play Video

  • 150x50

    CSO Webinar: Get real about metadata to avoid a false sense of security

    Speakers: • Anthony Caruana – CSO MC and moderator • Ian Farquhar, Worldwide Virtual Security Team Lead, Gigamon • John Lindsay, Former CTO, iiNet • Skeeve Stevens, Futurist, Future Sumo • David Vaile - Vice chair of APF, Co-Convenor of the Cyberspace Law And Policy Community, UNSW Law Faculty This webinar covers: - A 101 on metadata - what it is and how to use it - Insight into a typical attack, what happens and what we would find when looking into the metadata - How to collect metadata, use this to detect attacks and get greater insight into how you can use this to protect your organisation - Learn how much raw data and metadata to retain and how long for - Get a reality check on how you're using your metadata and if this is enough to secure your organisation

    Play Video

  • 150x50

    CSO Webinar: How banking trojans work and how you can stop them

    CSO Webinar: How banking trojans work and how you can stop them Featuring: • John Baird, Director of Global Technology Production, Deutsche Bank • Samantha Macleod, GM Cyber Security, ME Bank • Sherrod DeGrippo, Director of Emerging Threats, Proofpoint (USA)

    Play Video

More videos

Blog Posts

Market Place