EU calls for cyberattack responses

Dec. 2, 2010 at 3:17 PM

BRUSSELS, Dec. 2 (UPI) -- The European Union should criminalize the software tools used to conduct cyberattacks and set up an alert to flag such attacks, an EU commissioner says.

Citing the recent cyberattacks on the WikiLeaks Web site, EU home affairs Commissioner Cecilia Malmstrom urged action on cybercrime legislation currently being worked on in the European Commission, the EUobserver reported.

The Swedish commissioner called the attacks on WikiLeaks "scary."

"I note that the commission has proposed to criminalize botnets, the viruses and malicious software which were apparently used to attack WikiLeaks," she said.

"We have seen how countries like Estonia and Lithuania have been subjected to such attacks," she said.

"This time it was WikiLeaks. Next time, the target may be the Swedish stock exchange, a nuclear plant or a sensitive patient record at a hospital," she said.

The EU would also like to see an alert system set up in each member state, that citizens and companies can call 24 hours a day in case of an attack, she said.

"This sort of criminality is growing at a scary speed, we have to develop tools and cooperate much better to address this," she said.

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