Dr. Richard Browne
Director, The National Cyber Security Centre
The central role of digital technologies in Ireland’s social and economic life — and our dependence on the systems that host them — means a robust and resilient cybersecurity ecosystem is vital.
Cybersecurity is increasingly becoming a focal point for many Irish organisations that are aware of the impact a cyberattack may have on their operations — both their day-to-day business and their reputation. Acknowledging this, the National Cyber Security Centre (NCSC) has, among its fundamental driving principles, both the protection of the State from cyber threats and the simultaneous development of resilience within its realm.
Objectives of the cybersecurity strategy
Our National Cyber Security Strategy 2019–2024 sets out a range of collaborative measures to enhance the cybersecurity and resilience of public bodies, providers of essential services, businesses and households to support the continued development of the cybersecurity industry and research community — and to ensure Ireland plays an active role in the international discussions on the security and stability of a free and open cyberspace.
Some of the key objectives of the Strategy include:
- Continuing to improve the ability of the State to respond and manage cybersecurity incidents, including those with a national security component;
- Raising awareness of the responsibilities of businesses around securing their networks, devices and information, and;
- Driving research and development in cybersecurity in Ireland, including by facilitating investment in new technology.
Continuing to improve the ability of the State to respond and manage cybersecurity incidents
Reviewing the Strategy
A mid-term review of the Strategy is currently continuing, with public feedback from interested parties sought throughout a consultation period. The consultation period highlighted achievements to this point along with possible future measures for the remaining years of the Strategy.
The review will also lay the groundwork for an ambitious successor to this Strategy for the post-2024 period, which will fulfil the State’s obligations as set out in the proposed successor to the EU Network and Information Security Directive (NIS2).
Broadening the network and information security directive
A major focus of the National Cyber Security Centre for the forthcoming two-year period will be on the transposition and introduction of the NIS2 Directive.
This will require a continued whole-of-government approach to harmonised, high-level cybersecurity controls across public bodies, critical infrastructure and important industry sectors.
Collaborative work across sectors
The country must take the opportunity provided by this forthcoming process to work in concert with its European neighbours, our United Kingdom colleagues and public and private organisations throughout the country to continue to improve general security awareness and establish good security practices both within the public and private sector.