Spain, in the seventh position of the Global Cybersecurity Index published by ITU

We live in an increasingly connected world, especially through the internet. This gives us a host of advantages, but security is also necessary at the level of threats. This is what is responsible for assessing the Global Cybersecurity Index, whose latest report places Spain in the seventh position among countries around the world. Next, let us see what the importance of having a secure cyber system is.

More than half of the world’s population is currently online. The exact data, at the end of 2018, was 3.9 billion people, that is, 51.2%. In addition, according to the ITU Connect 2030, internet penetration in 2023 will reach 70%, which is beyond doubt that online security is more than necessary.

According to a study by IBM Security, the average cost of a security breach in companies increased by 6.4% last year. In addition, the estimated cost of cybercrime at the end of 2019 is $ 2 trillion. Despite the fact that in the world attacks by ransomware have been reduced, but more theft of personal data and breaches in critical infrastructures.

The telecommunications company Cisco carries out a study each year in which it evaluates the current situation of cybersecurity globally, pointing out the greatest threats and establishing the guidelines to follow to maintain a safe cyberspace.

In the 2018 report, Cisco warned that the evolution of malware was “one of the most important developments in the attack scenery”, making it clear that they are taking to levels of sophistication and unprecedented impact. Self-propagating malware is one of the elements that most concerns the organization, since “it has the potential to end the internet”.

In addition, criminals are improving their encryption skills to avoid detection and taking advantage of legitimate services such as Dropbox or GitHub, thus making their identification more difficult.

At what point is cybersecurity in Spain?

In 2017, 78.4% of Spanish households had at least one computer, and 83.4% had Internet access, figures that have not stopped increasing since the first data were collected. Except for those over 55, the rest of the age groups exceeds 90% whose individuals have used the internet in the last three months.

Internet access is slightly below the European Union average (83% vs. 87%), with countries such as Denmark, Luxembourg or the United Kingdom. Meanwhile, in the Index of Economy and Digital Society (DESI, for its acronym in Spanish), which values ​​connectivity, human capital or the use of internet services, Spain is in the tenth position, four tenths above the European average.

Once established the importance of the Internet in Spain, we must know what the cybersecurity that the country has is and how important is cybercrime. The CERTSI is the competent organization in the prevention, mitigation and response to cyber incidents in the field of business, citizens and operators of critical infrastructure.

According to its latest report of 2017, the number of cases has suffered “a slight increase”, caused in part because the number of operators grew and new technological assets were included in the digital monitoring systems.

The most reported incident is still the harmful code (malware, with an increase of 24.44% over the previous year), in front of network scans (+ 148.72%) and unauthorized access to information and communication systems (+96.43%).

Global Cybersecurity Index

The Global Cybersecurity Index (GCI) is a reference of confidence that measures the commitment of countries to cybersecurity at a global level. Its objective is to increase awareness of the importance and different dimensions of this issue. Being a very broad field, transversal to many industries, the study is based on five pillars:

  • Legal: assessment of the legal framework regarding cybercriminal legislation and cybersecurity regulations.
  • Technical: assessment of the existence of technical institutions and a frame of reference on cybersecurity.
  • Organizational: assessment of the existence of institutions coordinating policies and strategies for the development of cybersecurity at the national level.
  • Capacity building: assessment of the existence of research and development, education and training programs, certified professionals and public agencies responsible for capacity building.
  • Cooperation: assessment of the existence of collaborations, cooperative frameworks and networks to share information.

Taking into account all these parameters, according to this index, Spain is in the seventh position of the countries most committed to cybersecurity, with 0.896 (out of 1). The division of the individual notes would be as follows: legal (0.2), technical (0.18), organizational (0.2), capacity building (0.168) and cooperation (0.148).

In context with neighboring countries within the European Union, Spain is in fifth place. This classification is headed by the United Kingdom (number one regional and global), followed by France, Lithuania and Estonia.

The GCI report highlights the laws passed by the Spanish Executive in favor of cybersecurity and some of its agencies that are in charge of combating crime in the network, among which are:

  • Law 36/2015, of September 28, on National Security.
  • The National Security System.
  • The National Cybersecurity Council.
  • The PILAR risk analysis and management tool, approved for use by the NATO and adapted to the GDPR.

In short, as we have seen throughout this article, cybersecurity is a very important aspect, that all countries must deal with property and protect their citizens and businesses against this type of crime. Moreover, as shown by the Global Cybersecurity Index, Spain is in a good position although with much to improve.