Dutch Cyber Security Council Invested

As part of the Dutch National Cyber Security Strategy that was launched earlier this year, one of the two new entities has officially been stood up. On June 30th of this year, Dutch minister Ivo Opstelten (Ministry of Security and Justice) officially installed the Cyber Security Council. The council will be advising both government and private parties on relevant developments in the area of digital security.

The council will make a priority of IT threats, will look into the necessity for further research & development and will investigate how this knowledge is best shared between collaborating public and private parties. The council will also expressly look to basic values such as the importance of privacy or fundamental rights such as freedom of speech and gathering of information. The foundation of the advice the Council will supply will lie in public-private risk assessments. The first threat analysis in the area of Cyber Security will be expected in October this year.

According to this government publication (warning, Dutch) the Cyber Security Council has been assembled based on balancing the public, private and scientific community with a broad spectrum in relevant Cyber Security issues and angles. It will feature a dual chairmanship. The Council currently exists of the following members:

  • Eelco Blok, co-chairman of the Council, CEO KPN;
  • Erik Akerboom, co-chairman. National Coordinator for Counterterrorism
  • Harry van Dorenmalen, on behalf of the IT suppliers, chairman IT~Office and Chairman IBM Europe
  • René Steenvoorden, on behalf of the major IT end users, chairman CIO Platform and CIO Rabobank
  • Frank Heemskerk, on behalf of the end users and SMEs, chairman of the ECP-EPN Supervisory Board and member of RVB Royal Haskoning;
  • Ben Voorhorst, on behalf of the vital infrastructure, operational director Tennet and member of RVB Tennet;
  • Professor Corien Prins, Tilburg University;
  • Mark Dierikx, DG Energie, Telecom and Competition, Ministry of Economic Affairs, Agriculture and Innovation;
  • Mark van Nimwegen, Board of Prosecutors General, cyber crime portfolio holder;
  • Professor Michel van Eeten, TU Delft;
  • Major General Koen Gijsbers, Chief Director Information Provision and Organisation, Ministry of Defence;
  • Professor Bart Jacobs, Radboud University Nijmegen;
  • Ruud Bik, KLPD Chief Constable;
  • Jan Kees Goet, deputy Head AIVD;

The installation of the Cyber Security Council acts as a prelude to the investment of the National Cyber Security Centre, which is to be made operational on January 1st, 2012. The NCSC is to be the operational centre of knowledge and expertise brought together by a collaboration between the public and private sector. Though it is absolutely a positive development that the Cyber Security Council has been made operational so quick, it is sad that the Dutch government did not provide a public course for other interested parties to participate. Obviously the first batch of members have been hand-picked and as such it could hardly be called a democratic process. Let us hope that this is changed rapidly so that more parties with experience in Cyber Security and Cyber Warfare can start assisting the Dutch government.