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USAID Launches the Albanian Cyber-Security Program

USAID Launches the Albanian Cyber-Security Program

Tirana, June 15, 2011 NOA - USAID launched the Albanian Cyber-Security Program, a one-year initiative that will build the Government of Albania’s (GoA) capacity to prevent and respond to cyber-security incidents. USAID/Albania Mission Director, Mr. Joseph C. Williams, and Albania’s Minister of Innovation and ICT, Mr. Genc Pollo, delivered opening remarks at the ceremony.

Following the ceremony, experts from Carnegie Mellon University’s Software Engineering Institute (SEI) will conduct a week-long workshop to help key GoA and non-governmental institutions understand cyber-security models, build skills to resist operational threats, and develop processes for managing cyber-security incidents.

Participants will include the National Agency for Information Society and information technology specialists from various GoA institutions, including the Ministry of Finance, Ministry of Defense, Ministry of Interior, Ministry of Justice, Ministry of Foreign Affairs, Ministry of Economy, Trade and Energy, Albanian State Police, Commissioner for Personal Data Protection.

Between September 2011 and March 2012, SEI will conduct several more workshops that will provide the GoA with the methods and knowledge needed to set up its own cyber-security facility that will protect Albania from cyber threats that result from natural disasters to cyber-attacks. Workshop topics will include: planning and implementing strategies, benchmarks, timelines, resources; gathering computer security incident reports; designing and maintaining a database of security incidents; publicizing the facility’s role; developing a warning notification service; and building relations with peer security organizations.

For several years information and communication technology (ICT) has been integral component of USAID programming in Albania. Last year, USAID conducted a comprehensive assessment of Albania’s ICT sector. It confirmed the importance and impact that IT solutions have on issues of transparency and governance, in particular the e-government reforms implemented through the MCC Threshold Program.