Yesterday, het Nederlands Cyber Collectief (the Dutch Cyber Collective) – an initiative by Dutch insurance company Nationale-Nederlanden – was officially launched. Het Collectief is an umbrella organization that combines knowledge and strength, with the purpose of lowering the rates of cybercrime for small and medium-sized enterprises (SMEs) in the Netherlands.
Holland is vulnerable
Research shows that damages from cybercrime in the Netherlands amount to approximately 10 billion euros annually. As bigger organizations have upped their security game, cybercriminals are now starting to focus on SMEs, who often lack effective security measures. At the same time, the financial risks for these businesses can be substantial. “This initiative stands out by making ‘cyber’ accessible to SMEs, while speaking the language of the entrepreneur,” says Christiaan Zwiers of the Dutch Cyber Collective.
Fighting cybercrime goes beyond individual interests and requires cooperation between several parties, both profit and non-profit, multinationals and startups. Het Nederlands Cyber Collectief was conceived by Nationale-Nederlanden, which was then joined by, among others, Fox-IT and Meld Misdaad Anoniem (a non-profit organization where crime can be reported anonymously). The primary goal of het Collectief is to come up with one approach instead of the current, fragmented approaches, to make the Netherlands less attractive to cyber criminals. Cyber risks are growing and the internet makes cybercriminals more powerful, while users become more vulnerable. “We invite all interested organizations and individuals to join, because together we stand stronger”, adds Zwiers.
Besides free information and advice, the website www.nederlandscybercollectief.nl also offers paid services. For example, there is an emergency service that SMEs can call when they have been hacked, and a risk finding solution that offers insight into a company’s vulnerabilities. The basic services are currently being tested by a hundred SMEs. The services offering should become available to other businesses by early 2017.