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The European Energy-Information Sharing & Analysis Center (EE-ISAC) has organised at the European Parliament its first conference titled Ready for the European Resilient Cyber Security Single Market? to debate with DG ENER, DG CNECT and EDSO for Smart Grids on the future of cybersecurity in the energy sector.

The conference was conceived in the framework of the European Cyber Security Month (ECSM) to raise awareness on cyber threats, promote cybersecurity among citizens and organisations as well as resources to be protected online, through education and sharing of good practices.

During the conference the first EE-ISAC white paper on cybersecurity risk was presented, along with a multilateral agreement to be signed the day after with the US E-ISAC and Japanese E-ISAC in Las Vegas; and those recently signed with the Energy Analytic Security Exchange (EASE) and the Norwegian KraftCERT organization.

Massimo Rocca, the Chairman of the EE-ISAC, kicked off the conference emphasising how crucial it is to ensure that the sources we rely on are trustful and secure.

MEP Pilar de Castillo (EPP), the host of the event, has recommended that “digital and energy is a winning alliance. If we manage to guarantee the adequate level of security, we will, at the same time, give a necessary step to establishing a very powerful combination that will drive the competitiveness of the European economy to the next level in the context of the global market.”

The message was further reinforced by all panellists. Jakub Boratynski from DG CNECT, noted that the EE-ISAC bottom-up approach, which facilitates monitoring of the lack of compliance, is a terrific example of how ISACs should operate and has revealed itself to be an important resource for the European Commission itself.

Michaela Kollau from DG ENER claimed, “in cybersecurity fast cooperation is key, both among the relevant players and stakeholders and among all the European Union Member States by launching and promoting programs such as Horizon 2020.”

In addition, Roberto Zangrandi from EDSO for Smart Grids, stressed the importance of digital safety for the citizens in the energy industry as well as in all digitalised sectors, as the industry is now moving from corporate social responsibility to digital social responsibility.

He urged stronger cooperation between the main stakeholders and policy makers to formulate and conceive a “forward-looking regulation”.