The Danish Government: Denmark reinforces defences against digital threats


A new national cyber and information security strategy will provide citizens, businesses and authorities alike with even better protection against cyberattacks and digital threats.

In the future, citizens, businesses and authorities must be offered better protection against IT criminals and foreign states attempting to access and abuse sensitive data. Therefore, the Minister for Public Sector Innovation, the Minister for Defence and the Minister for Industry, Business and Financial Affairs are launching a new cyber and information security strategy.

Minister for Public Sector Innovation Sophie Løhde says: 

The threat from hackers and IT criminals against citizens, businesses and public authorities has drawn very close, and digital attacks are becoming ever more frequent and ever more advanced. With this strategy, we’re reinforcing our capacity to defend our society against cyberattack.

The strategy comprises 25 specific initiatives to consolidate the defence of Danish society against cyberattack and IT criminals. The strategy builds further on the 2018-2023 Defence Agreements. In the next few years, the Danish government will invest DKK 1.5 billion in Danish cyber and information security.

With the new Danish Cyber and Information Security Strategy, the Danish government and the parties behind the Defence Agreements are consolidating joint efforts to protect Denmark against external threats. 

New units will provide better security for vulnerable sectors

Six sectors are particularly vulnerable to cyberattack. These sectors are the energy sector, the transport sector, the telecommunications sector, the financial sector, the healthcare sector and the maritime sector. In the event of a cyberattack against a power plant, for example, large parts of Denmark will break down. This will have consequences for much of society.

Minister for Public Sector Innovation Sophie Løhde says: 

The digital threat against our society remains high. We need to protect Danish society against attacks that may be extremely costly for Denmark in terms of the economy and even, in a worst-case scenario, in terms of human lives. Therefore, we’re now placing even higher demands on work by these sectors to prevent serious cyberattack. 

The capacity to counter digital threats in these critical sectors must be strengthened. In 2017, a number of countries were hit by very serious cyberattacks, affecting the British healthcare system, for example.

This strategy demands that each sector prepares its own sub-strategy for work on cyber and information security by the end of 2018. Furthermore, each sector is required to establish a dedicated cyber security unit. 

Minimising the threat against Denmark

Denmark will also have a national cyber situation centre at the Centre for Cyber Security. The cyber situation centre, which will be manned day and night, will be responsible for increased monitoring of vital IT systems and of Denmark’s most important digital networks in order to warn authorities and businesses about current and potential threats.

Minister for Defence Claus Hjort Frederiksen says: 

Cyberattack by hard-core criminals and by countries such as Russia are one the greatest threats of our time. That’s why we’re now consolidating cross-authority efforts and combining a number of initiatives. This strategy is a natural continuation of the Defence Agreements, which also give high priority to the cyber area, and the large resources made available by the agreements will benefit society at large. In particular, we’ll strengthen the capacity of the Centre for Cyber Security to identify and prevent harmful cyberattacks targeted at authorities and businesses in Denmark. 

Collaboration between the public and private sector increases security

Digitisation in the Danish business community is generally high. Therefore, it is crucial for Danish businesses to have a high level of IT security and responsible data processing.

Minister for Industry, Buisness and Financial Affairs Brian Mikkelsen says:

The digital transition may be the key to enhancing productivity and growth, and may thus be the foundation of our common future prosperity. Therefore, Danish businesses should be guaranteed a safe digital future with better protection against hackers and other cybercriminals. A number of initiatives will be launched to ensure better IT security in businesses, so that we can all feel safe and have confidence in digital systems and data processing.

Citizens to receive training in digital security

Moreover, Danes’ digital competences will be enhanced even further. More Danes need to learn how to protect themselves in relation to cyber and information security. Consequently, digital skills and security will be given more focus throughout the educational system, from primary and lower-secondary school to research at universities.

Finally, knowledge about how to behave if something goes wrong will be far more easily accessible. Consequently, one common information portal will be established for citizens, businesses and authorities, with information about current threats and advice on how to protect data.

Read more about the Danish Cyber and Information Security Strategy.