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FABCE Cyber Security Experts meet to explore cooperation, harmonisation of programmes

cyberThe FAB CE Cyber Security Experts, comprising FABCE information technology (IT) security managers (ITSO) and chief information security officers (CISO) from the seven FAB CE air navigation service providers (ANSPs), met in Vienna on 29 June for the first time, to exchange views on cyber security challenges and examine potential areas of cooperation.

ANSPs face a number of major cyber security challenges apart from the most obvious one of protecting company and operational networks from cyber-attacks. In Europe there are a wide number of working groups set up to pioneer work in this area – including programmes under way within Eurocontrol, the Civil Air Navigation Services Organisation (CANSO) and the European Aviation Safety Agency (EASA) – and one of the roles of the FAB CE Cyber Security Experts is to ensure there is no duplication or effort and to agree on areas of cooperation with the different initiatives under way.

“One of most important challenges is to ensure we have the same open exchange of security information as we have on the safety side,” said Harald Stainoch, Deputy Corporate Security Officer (CSO) at Austro Control and project manager of the organisation’s information security enhancement project. “I think we are one or two or three steps behind in this regard. We all have security challenges but, for understandable reasons, there is a reluctance to share them. The problems are well known but the range of work in IT security is a huge one and I suspect we are at different stages of development.”

While work has begun as part of a Eurocontrol programme to harmonise security protocols around message transmission within the FAB, all European ANSPs face similar challenges in understanding the best way to harmonise programmes and understand the appropriate level of resources required to meet the challenges.

“For the time being the meeting of the FAB CE Security Experts will be focused on the exchange of information - presenting the state of play within each ANSP and perhaps outlining roadmaps for further development,” said Harald Stainoch. “We will, most importantly, be looking at the best ways we can help each other and freely share our best practices in FAB CE.”