Symantec to supply intelligence to Nato

The security company will supply intelligence and manpower to the Cooperative Cyber Defence Centre of Excellence, a Nato-accredited military organisation
Written by Tom Espiner, Contributor

Security company Symantec is teaming up with an international research organisation that supplies computer security intelligence to Nato.

The Cooperative Cyber Defence Centre of Excellence (CCDCOE), established in 2008 to enhance Nato's cyber-defence capability, has signed a memorandum of understanding with Symantec, the partners said in a joint statement on Monday.

Symantec will provide technology and manpower to research online threats, according to the company's UK director of government relations, Ilias Chantzos.

"It's a research agreement," Chantzos said. "We supply them with particular technology to collect information about attacks. We will work together to share information." The deal between the two organisations has no financial components, he added.

The CCDCOE, based in Tallinn, was established in 2008 following extensive, co-ordinated denial-of-service attacks against Estonian financial and governmental organisations. It is an international effort sponsored by Estonia, Latvia, Lithuania, Germany, Italy, the Slovak Republic and Spain.

Chantzos said Symantec will use a system of remotely deployable collector nodes to gather cyberattack data from specific, targeted geographic areas.

The collector nodes will make use of Symantec's existing Global Intelligence Network (GIN), which consists of 240,000 software sensors and its customers' 120 million desktop, server and gateway antivirus installations. The GIN allows malicious software to be captured and transmitted back to Symantec Security Response centres for analysis.

Symantec's research will not focus on any particular area of cybercrime or cyber-warfare, but instead will provide an overall picture of the computer security landscape, according to Chantzos.

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