How to protect against the cyber attacks – The project InCyT

The digital economy is primarily based on data. In the age of Industry 4.0, cyber-physical systems and the Internet of Things, more and more products and processes are being digitized. Cyber security, i.e., the protection of this data and the associated information processing systems, is more relevant today than ever before in economic history.

Business processes can be significantly disrupted, slowed down or even brought to a complete standstill, for example if data records are incorrect, incomplete or not available at all, the synchronization of data between systems is disturbed, IT systems work incorrectly or fail completely.

SMEs in particular are objectives for criminal activities connected with these problems. In contrast to large corporations, their resources are limited - and hackers know that! SMEs are the backbone of the economy in Europe, i.e. over 99 percent of companies in Germany are SMEs. More than half of the workforce are employed by SMEs. Therefore, it is necessary to help SMEs to avoid cyber attacks.

The NIST National Initiative for Cybersecurity Education (NICE) emphasizes that a critical step should be taken to address the shortage of "people with the knowledge, skills and abilities to perform the tasks required for Cyber security work". Such a group includes "technical and non-technical functions that are occupied by knowledgeable and experienced employees". However, it is difficult to create a workforce with the necessary interdisciplinary skills and to solve the problem of communication between educators, researchers and people using information technologies. Cooperation and communication between these groups is necessary.

One problem is that companies, especially SMEs with fewer resources, need help assessing the skills and skills gaps of their employees, using digital methods to improve the existing situation and organizing training opportunities to reskill their employees.

The following picture shows some activities in this context which will be supported by the project InCyT.