How Does Your Country Rank in the UN Cybersecurity Index?
Is your country a top performer in fending off cybersecurity threats – or does it come in last?
The annual UN Global Cybersecurity Index, a multi-stakeholder initiative to measure the commitment of countries to cybersecurity, is out and has your answer.
The index is built on a country’s level of development within legal measures, technical measures, organizational measures, capacity building and cooperation. It examines a nation’s capacity to respond to large-scale security incidents, the legislation in this area, the protection of critical infrastructure, the capacity to work with other countries and the security culture that might – or might not – exist among the population. The index has only become even more relevant with the latest Petya and WannaCry cyberattacks, which has put several organizations out of the game for a while.
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According to the UN, in 2016, almost half the world used the Internet (3.5 billion users) and according to one estimate, there will be over 12 billion machine-to-machine devices connected to the internet by 20202. Yet, just as in the real world, the cyber world is exposed to a variety of security threats that can cause immense damage.
The UN established the index to reveal the countries with high rankings in specific areas, and consequently highlight lesser known – yet successful – cybersecurity strategies.
Estonia tops the list in Europe
The 2017 index shows improvement and strengthening of all five elements of the cybersecurity agenda in various countries in all regions, yet a gap in the level of cybersecurity engagement between different regions is still present and visible.
This year’s index among others notes that Estonia is the highest-ranking nation in fending off cybersecurity threats in the Europe region. Following a cyberattack in Estonia in 2007, the country has increased its cybersecurity commitment and in 2011 enacted the Personal Data Protection Act to ensure protection of human rights and freedoms, including the right to privacy, in the course of personal data processing.
Georgia is top ranked in the Commonwealth of Independent States (CIS), following large-scale cyber-attacks on the country in 2008, and Mauritius is the top ranked country in the Africa region. In South America, Colombia became one of the first countries in the world when, in 2009, it enacted a law specifically targeting cyberspace. The law calls for a prison sentence or large fines for anyone convicted of information systems or telecommunication network crimes and among others covers illegally accessing personal information, intercepting data, destroying data or using malicious software.