In Berlin today, President Toomas Hendrik Ilves chaired an EU meeting on cloud computing in which he emphasized the importance of data security.
The meeting focused on developing EU-wide e-services and cross-border data sharing.
"Online security consists of three factors: privacy or confidentiality; data integrity and accessibility," Ilves said in a press release.
"Recent scandals have brought the issue of digital privacy into public debates; however, violating the integrity of data is even more dangerous, threatening lives and infrastructure essential to the functioning of society - we can for example imagine the damage that can be done by changing people’s blood groups or the cycles of traffic lights by simple changes of the data in databases," Ilves said.
He said European Union member states must ensure a safe system for their citizens that can fend off attacks and protect online identity and data integrity.
“I would like to use the Estonian X-Road as a good example, not necessarily as a technical solution but rather as a way of thinking, a concept that data must be protected by a specific identification system. A crucial factor for all secure and functional e-services is secure online identity. We also need legislation that enables the use of legally valid digital signatures and that prevents the state from asking for the same data more than once. Data protection laws must be updated to the digital age. It is important that the citizen own his own data and have control over who has access to them and what can be done with them,” Ilves said.
Ilves became the head of the Steering Board of the European Cloud Partnership last year.