Poland and US join the Centre

The Polish and U.S. flags will be raised at the NATO Cooperative Cyber Defence Centre of Excellence today to mark the membership of these two nations.

“We were deeply honoured when Poland and U.S. announced their plans to join the Centre, and we are very fortunate to have both nations on board now,” noted Director of the NATO CCD COE, Colonel Ilmar Tamm. “This gives a clear indication that the work done at the Centre is important for NATO members and it also shows that there is one key element to cyber defence and that is cooperation. Cyberspace, which has often been dubbed as the borderless and free place to express one’s views, offers both opportunities and threats to the democratic values and our way of life.”

“Cyber security is a critical new element that nations must consider in 21st century defence planning.   Our full membership in the Centre of Excellence is a great step forward for the U.S., Estonia, and NATO.  As a member, we plan to work with our partners to strengthen the Centre and ensure its contributions remain central to NATO’s strategic goals,” said U.S. Ambassador to Estonia Michael C. Polt.

Secretary of Defence Robert Gates first announced the U.S. intention to join the Centre during a visit to Tallinn in November 2008.

For Poland, the accession to the Centre is a natural continuation of a broader effort focused on creation of a national framework for secure and stable operation in cyberspace. “We recognize the value of coordinated multinational approach to challenges generated by cyberspace and we expect the Centre to be a melting pot, where the combined effort of all NATO Allies will lead to development of a truly global, effective and comprehensive cyber defence framework,” noted the Polish Ambassador to the Republic of Estonia Grzegorz M. Poznański.

Poland announced its plans to join the centre in December last year, after the meeting of Polish Foreign Minister Radosław Sikorski his with Estonian counterpart Urmas Paet.

With Poland an the U.S., the Centre now has 10 Sponsoring Nations who participate in the work of the Centre. As a Sponsoring Nation, each country sends their experts to work in the Centre and each country also contributes to the shared budget. In addition to Poland and the U.S., Estonia, Latvia, Lithuania, Germany, Hungary, Italy, Slovakia and Spain are taking part of the Centre.

NATO Cooperative Cyber Defence Centre of Excellence is one of many NATO Centres of Excellence. Its mission is to enhance the capability, cooperation and information sharing among NATO, its member nations and partners in cyber defence by virtue of education, research and development, lessons learned and consultation.