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Home : ITU-D : ICT Applications and Cybersecurity Division

The ICT Applications and Cybersecurity Division (CYB) is the ITU Telecommunication Development Sector’s focal point to assist developing countries in bridging the digital divide by advancing the use of ICT-based networks, services and applications, and promoting cybersecurity.

The Division has overall coordination responsibility for Programme 2 of the Hyderabad Action Plan adopted at the 2010 World Telecommunication Development Conference. Priority activities include promoting cybersecurity, ICT Applications, and IP-based network-related issues.


"E-health services in low-resource settings: Requirements and ITU role", Tokyo, Japan, 4-5 February 2013

ITU Regional Forum on Cybersecurity for Europe and CIS, 23-25 October 2012, Sofia, Bulgaria

24-25 May 2012 - ITU Workshop for CIS countries “Migration from IPv4 to IPv6: Regulatory and Technical Aspects, Chisinau, Republic of Moldova

18-20 April - Geneva Health Forum

2-3 April 2012 - Muscat, Oman: Cyber Defence Summit

28-30 March 2012- Odessa, Ukraine: ITU/BDT Seminar «Current Methods for Combating Cybercrime in Europe, ASP and the CIS Region»

20 February 2012 - Geneva: How e-Science Can Help to Solve Pressing Societal Challenges: Fostering a Global Effort to Develop a Worldwide e-Infrastructure for Computational Neuroscientists to Fight Alzheimer's Disease.

26-27 April 2012 - Geneva: Joint ITU-WHO Workshop on e-Health Standards and Interoperability

25-27 October 2011 -  Geneva, Switzerland: eHealth Pavilion at TELECOM World 2011

06-08 April 2011 -  Odessa, Ukraine: Regional Seminar for CIS and EUR on Child Online Protection

10-11 March 2011 - Tokyo, Japan: ITU Regional meeting on e-Health, hosted by the Japanese Ministry of Internal Affairs and Communications


CYB Publications



ITU Activities on Climate Change

The ICT Eye

Child Online Protection Initiative

ITU Cybersecurity Gateway

Ongoing Projects

  • ITU-IMPACT Collaboration
    The ITU and the International Multilateral Partnership Against Cyber-Threats (IMPACT) formally entered into a Memorandum of Understanding in which IMPACT’s new state-of-the-art global headquarters in Cyberjaya, Malaysia, will effectively become the physical home of the ITU Global Cybersecurity Agenda (GCA). [See more information...]

    The ITU–IMPACT Collaboration seeks to build on synergies to provide a number of services and activities. These include:

    1) Real-time analysis, aggregation and dissemination of global cyber-threat information;

    2) Early warning system and emergency response to global cyber-threats; and

    3) Training and skills development on the technical, legal and policy aspects of cybersecurity

  • ITU Botnet Mitigation Toolkit
    ITU is  working with experts on developing a practical Botnet Mitigation Toolkit to assist developing countries in particular to deal with the growing problem of botnets. The Botnet Mitigation Toolkit is a multi-stakeholder, multi-pronged approach to track botnets and mitigate their impact, with a particular emphasis on the problems specific to emerging internet economies. [See more information...]
  • ITU Cybercrime Legislation Resources: ITU Toolkit for Cybercrime Legislation
    Deterring cybercrime is an integral component of a national cybersecurity strategy. In particular, this includes the adoption of appropriate legislation against the misuse of ICTs for criminal or other purposes and activities intended to affect the integrity of national critical infrastructures. Representing one of the elements identified in the ITU Global Cybersecurity Agenda as well as ITU-D Study Group Q22/1 approach to organizing national cybersecurity efforts, establishing the appropriate legal infrastructure is an integral component of a national cybersecurity strategy. In particular, this includes the adoption of appropriate legislation against the misuse of ICTs for criminal or other purposes and activities intended to affect the integrity of national critical infrastructures. As threats can originate anywhere around the globe, the challenges are inherently international in scope and it is desirable to harmonize legislative norms as much as possible to facilitate regional and international cooperation.
  • To assist countries in understanding the links between cybersecurity, the building of confidence and security in the use of ICTs, and cybercrime, ITU has developed, and is in the process of developing, a number of related resources. One such resource is an ITU publication titled “Understanding Cybercrime – A Guide for Developing Countries”. The "ITU Toolkit for Cybercrime Legislation" aims to provide countries with sample legislative language and reference material that can assist in the establishment of harmonized cybercrime laws and procedural rules. Development of the Toolkit is by a multidisciplinary international group of experts and a first draft was released in May 2009. [See more information...]

  • Regional Workshops and Capacity Building Activities Related to Cybercrime Legislation and Enforcement
    In order to increase awareness among ITU Member States on the importance of cybercrime legislation and law enforcement, a number of regional capacity building activities and workshops on cybercrime legislation and enforcement are currently being planned. Partnerships with the Council of Europe, UNODC, Interpol, National Departments of Justice, as well as other national, regional and international organizations are being established to aid in the implementation of these and related activities. [See more information...]

 Division Activities

Enhancing security and building confidence in the use of ICT applications is one of priority domains for Programme 2 of the Hyderabad Declaration adopted at the 2010 World Telecommunication Development Conference.

ICT applications, such as e-Government, e-Commerce, e-Education, e-Health and e-Environment, are seen as enablers for development, as they provide an efficient channel to deliver a wide range of basic services in remote and rural areas. ICT applications can facilitate the achievement of millennium development targets, reducing poverty and improving health and environmental conditions in developing countries. Given the right approach, context and implementation processes, investments in ICT applications and tools can result in productivity and quality improvements. In turn, e-applications may liberate technical and human capacity and enable greater access to basic services.

Activities are related to integrating IP-based applications and value-added services in this area and to advise and assist in response to the concerns and needs of the developing countries in connection with the introduction of IP‑based multimedia and value-added services in the development of telecommunication networks.


Recent CYB Publication


ITU Botnet Mitigation Toolkit

'Botnets', or as the media calls them, 'Zombie Armies' or 'Drone Armies', and their associated malware have grown over the years into a multimillion dollar criminal economy, a risk to government, critical infrastructure, industry, civil society and to the broader Internet community.

Botnets are coordinated groups of several thousand computing devices (such as PCs, laptops and even the new generation of mobile devices such as 'smartphones'), all infected with the same virus or other malware. Their collective computing power and Internet connectivity is harnessed into a collective whole and remote controlled for the performance of malicious and criminal activities.

Botnets are an illegal and unethical application of the concept of Distributed Systems, which has existed since at least 1970, in which multiple computing devices cooperate to achieve an integrated result...[Continue reading about this toolkit.]


Recent CYB Publication



ITU Cybercrime Legislation Resources: ITU Publication on Understanding Cybercrime – A Guide for Developing Countries

To assist countries in understanding the links between cybersecurity, the building of confidence and security in the use of ICTs, and cybercrime, ITU has developed, and is in the process of developing, a number of related resources. One such resource is an ITU publication titled “Understanding Cybercrime A Guide for Developing Countries”. The guide can serve to help developing countries better understand the implications related to the growing cyber-threats and assist in the assessment of the current legal framework and in the establishment of a sound legal foundation, if this does not yet exist. The publication was released in May 2009.

ITU Cybercrime Legislation Resources: ITU Publication on Understanding Cybercrime: A Guide for Developing Countries (Available for download now!) [Continue reading about this publication.]


The Guide is now available for download in Arabic, Chinese, English, French, Russian, and Spanish.

عربي [AR]
[3.8 MB]
中文 [ZH]
[4.8 MB]
English [EN]
[3.1 MB]
Français [FR]
[3.6 MB]
Español [ES]
[3.4 MB]
Русский [RU]
[4.5 MB]
Recent CYB Publication


Electronic Government for Developing Countries

The purpose of this report is to examine the adoption of e-Government services in countries with developing economies. The day-to-day business of government is built on information. Information is a critical resource that helps to ensure the accountability of government, enables governments to manage its operations, and allows the public to participate in the governance of their country. With the revolutionary changes that ICTs are bringing to our global society, governments worldwide continue to develop more sophisticated ways to digitize its routines and practices so that they can offer the public access to government services in more effective and efficient ways. Across the world, 173 of 190 countries use the Internet to deliver government services. These activities are broadly referred to as digital government, which is an "umbrella term that comprises all uses of information and telecommunication technologies in the public sector" (Garson p. 18).

E-Government focuses on the utilization of information and communication technologies (ICT) to deliver government services. E-Government is part of other closely related efforts in digital government. This report examines e-Government, although some examples could be regarded as e-governance initiatives... [Continue reading about this report.]

Recent CYB Publication


National e-Strategies for Development, Global Status and Perspectives, 2010

The report National e-Strategies for Development, Global Status and Perspectives, 2010 is a publication in the framework of the World Summit on the Information Society (WSIS) on the occasion of the fifth anniversary of the WSIS’s Tunis phase and the adoption of the Tunis Agenda for Information Society. The Report reviews the progress in the elaboration of comprehensive, forward-looking and sustainable national e-strategies, and makes recommendations on policies and measures. This includes ICT strategies and sectoral e-strategies as an integral part of national development plans and poverty reduction strategies, as was called for by the Tunis Agenda for the Information Society... [Continue reading about this report.]

Recent CYB Publication


Innovative ways of appropriating mobile telephony in Africa

The democratization of mobile telephony in Africa, its availability, ease of use and, above all, the extent to which it has been appropriated by the public, have made it a major success story. Very low-income populations are not only actively demanding access to mobile telephone services but also innovating, by creating the functions and applications they can use. Development is thus happening “from the bottom up” and an entire economy, both formal and informal in nature, has come into being to meet people’s needs. Many different actors – private, public, NGOs – are now mobilized. Operators and manufacturers have successfully changed their economic model and adapted their products and applications to allow access to services at affordable prices. NGOs have in addition created a range of messaging- based services in different sectors. However, the future evolution of mobile telephony is not clear. A range of different approaches will co-exist, from SMS up to full Internet capacity, including experimental initiatives using smart phones and “netbooks”. Falling costs will lead to an increase in the number of phone devices with data receiving capacity. Individuals and companies involved in creating services or applications for development will need to take account of their users’ demographics and incomes, as well as the pricing systems of telecommunication companies in countries where they wish to operate. In this, States and regulating authorities have grasped the crucial role which they must play in promoting an investment-friendly environment with the goal of achieving universal access and stimulating innovation – key factors in achieving a “critical mass” of users. This report takes stock of developments in this sector, which is crucial to Africa’s economic development, and suggests a number of possible directions it might take. ... [Continue reading about this report.]

Recent CYB Publication


M-Government: Mobile Technologies for Responsive Governments and Connected Societies (ITU, OECD 2011)

TThis report aims to foster a better understanding on how to leverage the economic and social impacts of the use of mobile technologies and applications to enable ubiquitous governments, sustain public sector innovation and transform public service delivery. The report is a joint-product of the collaboration of International Telecommunication Union (ITU), the Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development (OECD) and the United Nations Department of Economic and Social Affairs (UNDESA).... [Continue reading about this report.]

Recent CYB Publication


IMPACT (International Multilateral Partnership Against Cyber Threats)

On 8th September 2011, IMPACT has formally become the cybersecurity executing arm of the United Nations’ (UN) specialised agency -International Telecommunication Union (ITU) in a landmark agreement that was signed during the World Summit for Information Society 2011 (WSIS) Forum in Geneva, May 2011. IMPACT is tasked by ITU with the responsibility of providing cybersecurity assistance and support to ITU’s 193 Member States and also to other organisations within the UN system. The Memorandum of Agreement was officially signed by ITU Secretary-General Dr. Hamadoun Touré and Datuk Mohd Noor Amin, Chairman of IMPACT at the ITU’s head office in Geneva. Founded in 1865, ITU is the oldest organisation within the UN system and functions as the UN’s specialised agency for information and communication technologies. IMPACT’s involvement with ITU began in 2008 when it was chosen as the physical home of ITU’s Global Cybersecurity Agenda (GCA). The GCA is an international cybersecurity framework that was formulated following deliberations by more than 100 leading experts worldwide. The GCA contains many recommendations, which when adopted and appropriately implemented, would result in improved cybersecurity for the global community of nations. Through a Memorandum of Understanding inked back in 2008, ITU made IMPACT the physical home of the GCA and had tasked IMPACT with the responsibility to operationalise the various initiatives under the GCA. In addition to this, during the 2011 WSIS Forum, a Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) was signed between ITU and the United Nations Office on Drugs and Crime (UNODC) which will see IMPACT playing a pivotal role in supporting both organisations in their collaboration to assist UN member states mitigate risks posed by cybercrime. IMPACT’s Global Response Centre (GRC) acts as the foremost cyber threat resource centre for the global community and provides emergency responses to facilitate identification of cyber threats and sharing of resources to assist ITU-UNODC Member States. Since its establishment back in 2008, IMPACT serves as a politically-neutral platform which brings together governments, industry and the academia to enhance the global community’s capabilities in dealing with cyber threats. [Continue reading about this document]


Recent CYB Publication


ICTs and e-Environment

This report, ICTs and e-Environment, reviews key ICT trends and provides an overview of the impact that ICTs have on the environment and climate change as well as their role in helping mankind to mitigate and adapt to these changes. The report approaches the issues from a development perspective and is based on consultations with key actors and extensive online research. The ICTs and e-Environment report documents current activities and initiatives and makes a set of recommendations for strengthening the capacity of developing countries to make beneficial use of ICTs to mitigate and adapt to environmental change, including climate change.
[Continue reading about this report.]



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Updated : 2014-09-05