The Establishment of National Cyber Security Centre Was Discussed at the ECHO Project Meeting

Tuesday, 18 October 2022 12:50

The UNWE hosted a rotational meeting for the establishment of a National Hub - Bulgaria" under the ECHO project /Тhe European Network of Cybersecurity Centers and Competence Hub for Innovation and Operations/.

The meeting was attended by representatives of the project partners from the UNWE, Institute for Information and Communication Technologies of BAS, European Software Institute - Eastern Europe Center /ESI/, Electron Progress and Telelink.

In the frameworks of the meeting were discussed issues related to the legal, economic and organizational aspects of the establishment of the National Cyber Security Centre within the project and the international network of ECHO partners.

"It is an opportunity for UNWE to show what it has done in the field of cyber security. Life becomes more and more digitalized, and it poses many risks and challenges. We are a aniversity with 16 thousand students with a huge amount of data and there are very serious requirements for us so we need to be protected", said the Rector of UNWE Prof. Dr. Dimitar Dimitrov and added: "Our ambitions are to open a Bachelor's degree programme in Computer Science next year, which will be called Cyber Security and e-Government, in the field of management, organization and standards related to cyber security. We actively work in this direction. We have the support of the Ministry of e-Government for the state procurement units and there is a lot of interest from companies and other organizations, because it is seen that the problem is not only at national level, but also at international level".

The Rector outlined that the event is an opprtunity to announce the establishment of a Cyber Clinic. The idea comes on the occasion of his visit last year to the US under the Fulbright programme and the opportunity for participants in the programme to apply for mini-grants for various projects related to cyber security. At the Cyber Clinic, students, lecturers and volunteers will help solving issues related to the digital security.

Prof. Dr. Dimitar Dimitrov

Assoc. Prof. Dr. Georgy Sharkov, Director of the European Software Institute - Eastern Europe Centre /ESI/ pointed out: "One of the objectives and ambitions of this Center is to use the know-how products and services that have been developed within the cooperation with more than 40 European organizations from 16 countries participating in the ECHO project, to build on them and add them to those that are in the national network. In this way we prepare ourselves not just for capacity building or training of people, but also for incorporating both cyber security and resilience principles in the organizations”.

Assoc. Prof. Dr. Georgy Sharkov

"We have quite seriously rethought the problems of cybersecurity at the UNWE and we have already undertaken specific measures, we will continue further because we should not wait for something to happen, we need to be prepared. It is a very serious success for us that the Ministry of e-Government has given us a hand and we will be the pilot university to launch some of its administrative services in the National Register of Services, which has not been done before, I do not know of any university that has done it, so we will be the first to try. It is not only a challenge for us, but also a great chance to improve the service to students as well as to set a positive example", said Assoc. Prof. Dr. Rosen Kirilov, Vice Rector for Digitalization and Cybersecurity of UNWE.

Assoc. Prof. Dr. Rosen Kirilov

Assoc. Prof. Dr. Velizar Shalamanov from the Institute of Information and Communication Technologies of BAS emphasized: "For us the cooperation with the UNWE is of key importance for three reasons. First, the issue of cyber security starts at the level of leadership, management and business models, because if things in the management are not put on the right foundation, the technologies cannot solve problems on its own and the people are almost powerless in an unordered organizational environment. The second feature is that the ECHO project team in Bulgaria includes the Defence Institute. In this way, we link the problems of cybersecurity in the civil sector and e-government and critical infrastructure with cybersecurity in the defence system. Thus the link is also made with NATO capabilities and structures. The critical infrastructure for defence is the last stand for any other critical infrastructure in the country. Thirdly, what is extremely important for us is not just to apply the best practices that we can discuss with our partners in this pan-European network, but to really identify the services that we can provide to other EU and NATO partners", said Assoc. Prof. Shalamanov.

Assoc. Prof. Dr. Velizar Shalamanov

More information about the project can be found here.

Photo gallery from The Establishment of National Cyber Security Centre Was Discussed at the ECHO Pr ...