Cyber security is an increasingly important aspect of security, even more so when it comes to national security, guaranteed by the law enforcement agencies of European Union (EU) member states. For this reason, the EU has co-financed the European Cyber Situational Awareness Platform (ECYSAP) project. This aims to develop and implement innovative theoretical foundations, research methods and prototypes, integrated into a European operational platform that enables Cyber Situational Awareness in real-time. Leonardo's Cyber Security business is one of the main players, contributing to the project’s Course of Action component, focused on identifying and executing actions for the mitigation of cyber risk.
The project aims to provide military commanders with an accurate picture of cyber risks both in the planning phase and during the execution of the missions, assisting them in decision-making relating to all physical domains – land, sea, air, space – and in the main one of cyberattacks. In addition to the so-called soft war, cyber threats also affect conventional military operations, and in this case can be carried out with attacks aimed at compromising information systems, communication infrastructure and all embedded systems crucial for military operations. Furthermore, hostile conventional operations can be preceded by cyberattacks on critical and vital national infrastructures. Awareness of threats and the ability to prevent or thwart them in the process is, and will increasingly be, strategically critical for national security. In this sense, ECYSAP represents the European response to the new technological scenario.
The Defence Ministers of Italy, Spain, France and Estonia are participating in the project – with which relevant demonstration scenarios will be developed – as well as other important representatives from the industrial and academic world of the four nations. Co-funded by the European Commission (EC) under the European Defence Industrial Development Programme 2019 call, ECYSAP has a duration of four years, following which a unique cyber situational awareness framework will be provided that each EU state can customise according to their respective national procedures.
The ECYSAP project is one of the pillars of the future European Strategic Command and Control System (ESC2), an initiative of the Permanent Structured Cooperation (PESCO) that the EC established in December 2017 thanks to the support of six member countries (Spain, Italy, Germany, France, Portugal and Luxembourg).