Meeting the European Union’s security commissioner on Friday, President Kersti Kaljulaid pointed out that the union had a lot of catching up to do in digital matters, and that a leap forward was needed to address the risks of the digital age.
After her meeting with security commissioner Julian King, the president said that what was needed was a leap forward in cyber security, and a different attitude towards using computers in the age of the Internet.
They had discussed the risks of the current use of the Internet, Kaljulaid said. “For the most part, the problems are not digital, but more often than not the problem lies between the chair and the computer screen. Similarly to how twenty years ago the Tiger’s Leap brought computers and the Internet closer to the people, we now need a new Tiger’s Leap when it comes to the issue of people’s daily cyber hygiene,” the president wrote on social media.
A project first proposed in 1996 by then-ambassador of Estonia to the United States and later Estonian president, Toomas Hendrik Ilves, and minister of education Jaak Aaviksoo, the Tiger’s Leap was undertaken by the government to invest in the development and expansion of computer and network infrastructure in Estonia. The program was implemented in the early 2000s and is seen as an essential part in Estonia’s way to the digital society and e-government success stories it is now known for.
Kaljulaid: EU needs to move forward in digital matters
Additionally, Kaljulaid and King discussed the upcoming Estonian presidency of the Council of the European Union. “The focus of the discussion was on ensuring cyber security and the options to increase the security of the digital links within the EU. The commissioner was up to date on Estonia’s digital solutions, starting from the possibilities of e-police, the likes of which have yet to be implemented in most EU countries,” the president said.
“The implementation of digital opportunities is an issue where the whole of the EU needs to pull themselves together and understand that even if an idea in that particular field may at first sound intimidating, returning to pen and paper would not be a more secure solution. Instead, we must think together with the EU as to how we can make cyber solutions better and safer and how these can actually make people's daily lives easier, cheaper and safer,” Kaljulaid said.
The European Union’s commissioner for the security union concluded a two-day visit to Estonia on Friday, during which he met with the president, Prime Minister Jüri Ratas (Center), Minister of the Interior Andres Anvelt (SDE), Minister of Justice Urmas Reinsalu (IRL), and other officials.
Editor: Dario Cavegn