Norway Ranked Among the Best Countries in the World for Cybersecurity

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Norway Ranked Among the Best Countries in the World for Cybersecurity

An estimated 2,200 cyber attacks occur each day that’s expected to cost $10.5 trillion per year by 2025. This year alone, cybercrime is foreseen to set back the world an astounding $9.5 trillion according to Cybersecurity Ventures. Norway ranked among the best countries in the world for cybersecurity.

Now, more than ever, are cybersecurity measures urgent to reduce financial losses. Norway is one of the lucky countries in the world that has a solid online data security. The rankings compiled by GDS took into account different data sources starting with the National Cyber Security Index (NCSI) which categorized each country based on the strength of its data security measures. It also looked at the Global Cybersecurity Index 2020, a report prepared by the International Telecommunications Union (ITU). Another source of data was the Base AML Index which assesses the risk of money laundering and terrorist financing in each country. In addition, the risk faced by internet users was also considered as well as the strength of anti-cybercrime legislation in each country. To that end, Norway performed well and grabbed one of the top spots in the world for its excellent performance in data security.

Norway Ranked Among the Best Countries in the World for Cybersecurity
The Norwegian Personal Data Act includes extra details and specific regulations for certain sectors.

Robust Legal Framework

Considered as one of the most comprehensive data privacy laws in the world, the General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR) is a European Union (EU) law covering data privacy and security of individuals in the union as well as the European Economic Area (EEA) to which Norway is a part of. GPDR is strictly enforced and there are hefty fines for non-compliance. Hence, Norway’s data privacy law follows the same core principles and requirements of the GPDR.

Complementary to this is the ‘Personopplysningsloven’ or the Norwegian Personal Data Act, the national Norwegian law. It reinforces the GPDR applying its provisions to the specific Norwegian context. The Personal Data Act includes extra details and specific regulations for certain sectors. For example, the healthcare sector has additional data privacy requirements. Basically, individuals in Norway have the right to access and correct their data, erase it, and restrict its processing. Moreover, organizations and entities must be transparent about their data collection and processing practices. Essentially, the Personal Data Act strengthens data privacy protection for individuals following closely the GPDR core principles.

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Related: Scandinavia among the most cyber-secure countries in the World
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Norway Ranked Among the Best Countries in the World for Cybersecurity, article continues below the image.

Norway Ranked Among the Best Countries in the World for Cybersecurity
Internet penetration in Norway is at 99% indicating a familiarity and comfort level with technology.

Tech-Savvy Population

Internet penetration in Norway is at 99% indicating a familiarity and comfort level with technology. The country itself is one of the ‘most technologically advanced countries and territories’ in the world placing10th in the rankings made by Global Finance. Several parameters were adopted in assessing technological advancement such as the number of internet users as a percentage of population and LTE or 4G users as a percentage of population. The third metric is Digital Competitiveness Score including tech knowledge, current technology capability, and ability/readiness to produce new innovations. Lastly, the amount dedicated to research and development (R&D) as a portion of Gross Domestic Product (GDP) was also taken into account.

Therefore, it is safe to assume that Norwegians embrace new technologies readily and digital tools are integrated seamlessly into daily life. Unfortunately, technology is becoming more complex and it is still possible to encounter issues with data security. For example, AKVA Group ASA, a Norway-based aquaculture technology specialist, experienced a cyberattack in 2021 leading to key systems being shut down. Apparently, the attackers were after ransom money and the company reported financial losses after the incident. This shows that while a strong cyber security is in place, cyberattacks and data breach can still occur whether it’s caused by human error, outdated technology, or weak encryption.

Norway Ranked Among the Best Countries in the World for Cybersecurity
Norwegian Minister of Justice and Public Security Emilie Enger-Mehl

Focus on National Security

Norway emphasizes the importance of online security as part of its national security. It has adopted the GPDR into its national legislation and enacted the Personal Data Act as it applies to the Norwegian setting. Furthermore, the Norwegian government plays a proactive role in safeguarding critical infrastructure such as power grids, transportation systems, and financial institutions against online attacks. It works closely with private sector companies to craft solid security measures as well as perform joint exercises to test defenses. Information sharing between different stakeholders is facilitated as well by the government so that potential threats are detected early and coordinated responses to cyberattacks identified.

Specifically,  the government has a clear national virtual security strategy that outlines its priorities and initiative to protect the country from online threats. To illustrate, the National Cyber Security Centre (NCSC) is a government agency responsible for coordinating national cybersecurity efforts. It provides guidance and advice to businesses and public institutions as well as raise public awareness on online threats and risks.

Cybersecurity is a vital part of the nation’s daily functions. It is backed up by a solid legal framework and a tech-savvy population while the government prioritizes cybersecurity as part of national security.

Norway Ranked Among the Best Countries in the World for Cybersecurity
Karoline Gore

Norway Ranked Among the Best Countries in the World for Cybersecurity, written dedicatedly for Daily Scandinavian by Karoline Gore. Karoline is a freelance writer from Stoke on Trent in the UK who left the corporate grind when she started a family and has never looked back. She enjoys contributing to a range of online publications on the topics that are important to her.

Feature image (on top) ©  rivage / Unsplash

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