On the 1st of July 2014, the 3CE project was launched. The project is co-funded by the Prevention of and Fight against Crime Programme of the European Union. The project's duration is 24 months.The Cyprus Cybercrime Center of Excellence (3CE) is implemented by a Cyprus Consortium and coordinated by the Cyprus Neuroscience & Technology Institute, which is operating the Combined Awareness, Hotline, Helpline for Safer Internet, member of Insafe, INHOPE and Commonwealth’s Cybercrime Initiative (CCI). The partners of the project are:
- the Cyprus Police Office for Combating Cybercrime,
- the Office of the Commissioner of Electronic Communications & Postal Regulation which is the National Regulatory Authority for electronic communications also responsible for coordinating the implementation of the Cyprus National Cyber Security Strategy,
- the European University Cyprus, and
- the Advanced Integrated Technology Solutions & Services Ltd.
The project focuses on the creation of Cyprus Cybercrime Center of Excellence (3CE) analogous to the ones already established in Belgium, Bulgaria, England, Estonia, Greece, Romania, and Spain. 3CE will constitute the main platform for collaboration, coordination and exchange of knowledge regarding Cybercrime in Cyprus, combining the expertise of academic research groups, public sector organisations, Law Enforcement Agencies (LEAs), Judicial Personnel, civil servants and private sector stakeholders, as well as the collaboration with other National Cybercrime Centres, 2CENTRE, EC3 and Europol.
The objectives include, to collaborate closely and become a member of 2CENTRE, the Cybercrime Center of Excellence Network, established through the funding of the ISEC programme; to collaborate closely with the Cybercrime Centers of Excellence of other countries; to become the National Knowledge Center in the area of Cybercrime in Cyprus responsible for training all actors working in fields related to cybercrime; to provide high quality short training courses in the area of cybercrime; to provide interdisciplinary University and Vocational Training Courses in the the area of Cybercrime; to collaborate effectively with Europol, EC3 and Eurojust; to enhance the efficiency of the identification and investigation of Cybercrime in Cyprus; to assert the needs of Cybercrime investigation in Cyprus; to link with the Cyprus Safer Internet Center and enhance its awareness campaigns that focus on Cybercrime.
Cyprus currently lacks infrastructures and investigation tools to conduct effective research on cybercrime. The establishment of 3CE is of utmost importance, especially now that the National Cyber Security Strategy has been approved and top prioritized in the Government’s agenda. 3CE will serve as the stepping stone towards creating a sustainable infrastructure by promoting this project as key activity within the Cypriot Cyprus National Cyber Security Strategy.
3CE will provide short-term, highly focused and specialized training seminars on cybercrime-related issues for public and private sector participants. Courses will facilitate the exchange and diffusion of tacit knowledge and expertise and familiarize participants with new technologies and tools, and improve their day-to-day activities related to the Cybercrime area. University courses on Cybercrime developed and delivered to stakeholders will provide better understanding of the legal and technical elements of cybercrime for new generation scientists. Courses will be made available under creative commons licensing terms for LEAs worldwide.
3CE aspires to become an exemplary Centre of Excellence in the area of Cybercrime by conducting research in relevant fields, focusing particularly on areas dealing with forensic analysis, intrusion detection systems of critical information infrastructures, and legal aspects of cybercrime. Leveraging existing collaborations with third countries (Lebanon, Armenia, Georgia, West Bank Gaza), and membership in CCI, 3CE aspires to serve more globally. Even though such collaborations will take place after the project's official completion, such actions and synergies will ensure the sustainability and continuous advancement of the Centre spreading its impact not only across Europe but more globally.