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Organizational Structures

Watch and warning systems and incident response are essential when it comes to responding to cyber attacks, as is the free flow of information, collaboration and cooperation within and between national organizational structures. Individuals, organizations and governments are increasingly dependent on globally interconnected networks. In order to protect network infrastructures and address threats, coordinated national action is required to prevent, respond to and recover from incidents. Collaboration at all levels of government and with the private sector, academia, regional and international organizations, is necessary to raise awareness of potential attacks and take steps towards remediation. Effective incident management also requires consideration of funding, human resources, training, technological capability, government and private sector relationships, and legal requirements. Efforts are being made to bring together organizational structures at the national and regional level in order to facilitate communication, information exchange and the recognition of digital credentials across different jurisdiction. However, more needs to be done at the global level and international cooperation between these different structures is indispensable.


In this regard, ITU is working with Member States to identify the specific cybersecurity needs that they have and, based on this work, with the relevant national, regional and international organizations to implement these activities. Regional Cybersecurity Forums organized by the ITU Development Sector together with regional and national stakeholders serve as a good first step for countries to get involved in ITU’s cybersecurity capacity building activities.


Several regional initiatives are already recommending that Member States establish national cybersecurity response centers, such as computer incident response teams (CIRTs), noting that there is still a low level of computer emergency preparedness within many countries, particularly developing countries and that a high level of interconnectivity of ICT networks could be affected by the launch of an attack from networks of the less-prepared nations. ITU WTSA-08 Resolution 58[1] further emphasizes this and encourages ITU Member

States to move forward on creating national CIRTs. Given the importance of having an appropriate level of computer emergency preparedness in all countries and the need to establish national computer incident response teams and ensure coordination within and among the different regions, countries in need of assistance in this area are encouraged to contact the ITU, specifying existing cybersecurity preparedness and detailing their national requirements in this area. In implementing these and other activities with Member States, ITU is working with partners from both the public and private sectors in innovative and collaborative partnerships.


IMPACT Security Assurance Division

In partnership with leading ICT experts, IMPACT aggregates and develops global best practice guidelines, creating an international benchmark that is especially relevant for governments. This division conducts, upon request, independent ICT security audits on government agencies or critical infrastructure companies, thereby ensuring that these organizations subscribe to the highest security standards. The Security Assurance Division functions as an independent, internationally-recognized, voluntary certification body for cybersecurity.

[1] ITU WTSA Resolution 58: Encourage the creation of national computer incident response teams, particularly

for developing countries (Johannesburg, 2008), available at:


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Updated : 2009-06-19