3CE - Cyprus Cyber Crime Center of Excellence for Training, Research and Education
3CE is a project co-funded by the Directorate-General Home Affairs and Justice of the European Union. The project is coordinated by the Cyprus Neuroscience and Technology Institute (CNTI), with partners the Office of the Commissioner of Electronic Communications & Postal Regulation OCECPR, the Cyprus Police Office for Combating Cybercrime (OCC) of Cyprus Police, the European University Cyprus (EUC) and the Advanced Integrated Technology Solutions & Services Ltd. (ADITESS).
The Horizon 2020 Strategy of the EU places a high priority on the fight against the prevalence of child sexual abuse material online (the most serious form of cybercrime) and the ensuring of a better Internet for children. Similarly, the ISEC call focuses on the combating of cybercrime and suggests the development of national Cybercrime Centres of Excellence for training, research and education. Building on the abovementioned needs, Cyprus has identified a big gap in its current practices in the fight against cybercrime. Judicial personnel and other private and public officials, working in areas that can have an indirect connection to the fighting of cybercrime, lack the necessary knowledge and skills to be able to effectively perform their jobs when confronted with this topic. Additionally, Cyprus also lacks the relevant infrastructures and investigation tools to conduct effective research on cybercrime. Therefore, the establishment of the Cyprus Cybercrime Centre of Excellence is deemed to be of utmost importance for the country, especially at this moment in time that the National Cyber Security Strategy has been approved and is prioritised highly in the new Government’s agenda.
The objectives of the 3CE project are:
1. To create a Cyprus Cyber Crime Center of Excellence for training, research and education that will be of similar structure and format with existing National Centers of Excellence in Europe.
2. To collaborate closely and become a member of 2CENTRE; the Cybercrime Center of Excellence Network, established through the funding of the ISEC programme.
3. To collaborate closely with the Cybercrime Centers of Excellence of other countries
4. To become the National Knowledge Center (NKC) in the area of Cybercrime in Cyprus responsible for training all actors working in fields related to cybercrime
5. To provide high quality short training courses in the area of cybercrime
6. To provide interdisciplinary University and Vocational Training Courses in the the area of Cybercrime
7. To collaborate effectively with Europol, EC3 and Eurojust
8. To enhance the efficiency of the identification and investigation of Cybercrime in Cyprus
9. To assert the needs of Cybercrime investigation in Cyprus
10. To link with the Cyprus Safer Internet Center (CSIC) and enhance its awareness campaigns that focus on Cybercrime
11. To serve as the stepping stone towards creating a sustainable infrastructure for the CenterCentre by including aligning 3CEthis project within the Cypriot Cyprus National Cyber Security Strategy.
3CE is a targeted project that entails however benefits for the whole society. The creation of the Cyprus Cybercrime Centre of Excellence will allow the country to provide training opportunities on Cybercrime to target groups that have a direct or indirect relation to it. Specifically, the target groups of the project will be:
1. Law Enforcement Agents
2. Judicial Personnel
3. Government Officials (such as personnel of the Office of Personal Data Protection)
4. Private Sector Officials (such as ISPs)
The above mentioned target groups will be called to participate in the short-term trainings that will be organized during the project. Additionally, Policy Makers and other relevant stakeholders will be reached during the project to participate in the Final Conference and learn about Cybercrime related issues. Moreover, University Students will be reached to participate in the developed courses on Cybercrime. Finally, the general public will be targeted through the Public Awareness Event that will be organized in the last months of the project as well as through the 3CE website, newsletters and social media presence. The estimated total number of people to be reached during the project will be 500 excluding the people that will be reached at European and International Level through the dissemination of the project to networks such as INHOPE, Insafe, CCI and EU Kids Online.
The Consortium is comprised of the Cyprus Neuroscience & Technology Institute (CNTI), serving as Project Coordinator, the Office for Combating Cybercrime (OCC) of Cyprus Police, the Office of the Commissioner of Electronic Communications & Postal Regulation (OCECPR), the European University Cyprus (EUC) and the Advanced Integrated Technology Solutions & Services Ltd. (ADITESS). CNTI has extensive experience in managing and coordinating collaborative projects, including the Cyprus Safer Internet Centre “CyberEthics” operating since 2006. CyberEthics operates as combined Awareness Node, Hotline, and Helpline and has established collaborations with relevant key stakeholders (e.g. Ministries of Education, Interior, Justice, and Finance and Microsoft) in a campaign that aims to provide a better internet for children. CNTI participates in relevant networks such as Insafe (EU Network of Awareness Nodes and Helplines), INHOPE (international association of Hotlines), EU Kids Online (EU Network researching Internet use and risks for children) and the CCI (Commonwealth Cybercrime Initiative that assists developing Commonwealth countries establish better mechanisms to fight Cybercrime). The OCC collaborates closely with the hotline and it is the backbone of the project. Its people hold necessary qualifications and authority to combat electronic crimes. The OCECPR is the National Regulatory Authority for electronic communications. It is responsible for the coordination of implementation of the Cyprus National Cyber Security Strategy. The Centre for Risk, Safety and the Environment (CERISE) of the EUC is dedicated to research. It is active in the area of Cyber Security and being Academia has the credibility together with CNTI to develop high-level training materials and curricula. ADITESS is an advanced technology company with R&D experience that is most suitable to work on the research of forensic tools and intrusion detection systems that can be used for combating Cybercrime.