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[] New European Agency for Network and Information Security,

EU News Report : 08-10-2003 

New European Agency for Network and Information Security   
The Industry Committee on Tuesday approved with amendments a proposal to
set up a European Network and Information Security Agency for the
purpose of helping prevent problems such as computer crashes, IT network
failures, viruses and unauthorised interception of communications. The
amendments, in a first-reading report by Reino PAASILINNA (PES, FIN),
focus on the tasks of the new agency, the composition of the advisory
and management boards and the initial evaluation of the Agency?s work. 

The broad objective of the Agency is to create a common approach in
Europe to network and information security, assist in the application of
Community measures in this field and enhance the capability of the EU
and Member States to respond to problems. Its budget is ?24.3 million
and for the first time the Commission is proposing to set up an agency
for a limited period (from 1 January 2004 to 31 December 2008). The
proposal provides for the gradual recruitment of staff, while the seat
of the Agency is to be decided at the latest six months after the
regulation is adopted. 

The Industry Committee states in its amendments that the new agency
should ensure that security solutions are easily accessible to small and
medium-sized companies. It should provide advice to the Commission,
Parliament, competent national and European bodies and the business
community. And it should invite tenders for research in the area of
network and information security. 

The agency will be run by a management board, made up of five
representatives appointed by the Council, five by the Commission, two by
the European Parliament as well as four industry and two consumers'
representatives. MEPs want the management board to be approved, before
31 January each year, by both the Commission and the European
Parliament. They add that the Agency?s advisory board of nine experts
should include representatives from industry, consumer associations and
the science and research sector in the area of network and information

The committee also stresses that when the time comes, Parliament and the
Council should have a say in whether the Agency's life-span is extended
beyond 2008, rather than leaving this to the Commission.

European Communities


Daily Notebook : 25-09-2003

IT security and monitoring of the eEurope 2005 Action plan ? ?21 million
budget agreed   

Mel READ (PES, East Midlands)
Report on the Council common position for adopting a European Parliament
and Council decision on adopting a multi-annual programme (2003-2005)
for the monitoring of eEurope 2005 Action plan, dissemination of good
practices and the improvement of network and information security
(MODINIS) (7948/1/2003 ? C5-0252/2003 ? 2002/0187(COD))
Doc.: A5-0269/2003
Procedure : Codecision (2nd reading)
Debate : 24.09.2003
Vote: 25.09.2003 

By adopting a legislative resolution at second reading, MEPs agree a
figure of ?21 million for a programme to share information technology
best practice and improve network security. The programme runs from 2003
to 2005 and is for the monitoring of the eEurope 2005 Action plan,
dissemination of good practices and the improvement of network and
information security (the programme is also known as MODINIS). 

At first reading the European Parliament supported the Commission's
original proposal for a budget of ?25 million. The Council, in its
common position, put forward a figure of ?20 million. However, the
compromise figure of ?21 million should, according to the House, allow
the programme to fully meet its objectives. 

The purpose of MODINIS is to provide a financial support programme to
accompany national efforts for the transformation of Europe into a
knowledge-based economy. The programme contributes to the Lisbon
strategy by monitoring performances of and within Member States, by
facilitating the dissemination of good practices, by analysing the
economic and societal consequences of the Information Society and by
improving network and information security. 

MODINIS is a successor to the PROMISE programme, which expired at the
end of last year. It also provides necessary complementary funding to
ensure the proper implementation of the eEurope 2005 Action Plan, the
objectives of which were endorsed by the Seville European Council.

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