Slovakia is among the 10 best countries according to internationally recognized National Cyber Security Index (the NCSI). It is an e-Governance Academy think-tank project.
Currently, regularly evaluated index ranks 160 countries around the world. Respective countries can add data any time and advance in ranking. This is not our best position – in 2018 Slovakia took 1st place.
Our country went through several places during the evaluation; recently we were in 14th place. In July 2020, however, Slovakia has moved to today’s 7th place.
A thought from Estonia
The NCSI is a global index and project of the Estonian organization eGA (e-Governance Academy Foundation) which was established to collect and transfer knowledge and best practices in the field of e-Governance, e-Democracy, cybersecurity and building a modern society that effectively uses information and communication technologies.
The index is based on comparison of the preparedness of respective countries in the field of cybersecurity. It monitors how countries respond to threats, prevent their emergence and handle cybersecurity incidents.
Another goal of the index is to provide a database of publicly available resources for capacity building in the field of cybersecurity. The index serves as a comprehensive tool for measuring the maturity of respective countries in the field of cybersecurity – it contains accurate and up-to-date information on a state of cybersecurity of the countries included in ranking.
The organization is an independent think-tank and relevant eGA partners such as the Estonian Ministry of Foreign Affairs, the European Union and the Commission, the World Bank or the U.S. Agency for International Development take part in its activities.
The index monitors 46 indicators, gathered into 12 capacities, which are divided into three categories:
- general indicators of cybersecurity,
- basic indicators of cybersecurity,
- indicators of incident and crisis situation management.
Indicators have been developed according to the National Cyber Security Framework. It defines three basic threat groups:
- denial of services,
- data integrity breach,
- data confidentiality breach.
Threats directly affect the normal functioning of national information and communication systems, including state critical systems. In order to manage these threats, each country must have appropriate capacities for cybersecurity, incident management and handling and general development in this area.
The NCSI focuses on measurable aspects of cybersecurity implemented at the level of respective states:
- Legislation in force
- Organizations and units
- Cooperation formats
Each indicator has its value, which shows the relative importance of the indicator in the index. The values are given by the expert group according to the following objective rules:
1 point for a specific legal act,
2 – 3 points for a specialised unit,
2 points for an official cooperation format,
1 – 3 points for an outcome.
Evidence in individual indicators is in the form of legal acts, official public documents or official websites.
The result of scoring of individual indicators is the so-called NCSI Score that shows the percentage the country received from the maximum number of points, representing the individual indicators.
Currently, Slovakia has a score of 83.12%. In Central Europe, only the neighbouring Czech Republic has a better ranking. Compared to 2018, we have improved by 2.12 percent. The current 7th place ranks the Slovak Republic among the 10 most developed countries in the field of cybersecurity in the world.
Thanks to this index too, it is possible to observe a significant shift of Slovakia in the field of cybersecurity. We have followed up on the advancement from 2018 in the ITU Global Cyber Security Index.
Despite the good news, there are several areas for improvement. Cybersecurity education, especially in the pre-primary and primary education, is a topic that deserves more attention – at least in connection with the digitization and informatization of society, which brings familiarization with technologies at an early age, and thus new threats and risks to kids and teenagers.
Military operations in cyberspace are and will be more and more part of the activities of different countries. Slovakia should not be an exception. It is therefore essential to further develop military and civilian capabilities in defence and protection of cyberspace and in preparedness for crisis situations in the spirit of the government’s policy statement.
It would help Slovakia to regularly organize and develop military as well as joint cyber exercises of military and civilian forces focused on attacks and threats in cyberspace.
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