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Declaration by the High Representative on behalf of the European Union expressing solidarity with the United States on the impact of the SolarWinds cyber operation

Met dank overgenomen van Raad van de Europese Unie (Raad), gepubliceerd op donderdag 15 april 2021.

The European Union and its Member States express their solidarity with the United States on the impact of malicious cyber activities, notably the SolarWinds cyber operation, which, the United States assesses, has been conducted by the Russian Federation. The compromise affected governments and businesses worldwide, including in EU Member States. We share the concerns of our partners about the increasing number of malicious cyber activities, and are in particular alarmed by the recent increase in activities affecting the security and integrity of information and communication technology (ICT) products and services, which might have systemic effects and cause significant harm to our society, security and economy.

Malicious use of ICTs undermines the benefits that the Internet and the use of ICTs provide to society at large, and shows the readiness of some actors to effectively risk international security and stability.

All actors must refrain from irresponsible and destabilising behaviour in cyberspace. We will continue to investigate malicious cyber activities with a view to sustained, joint and coordinated action to prevent, discourage, deter and respond to such malicious behaviour in cyberspace, including by closely working with our international partners. We call upon all States to facilitate and play a constructive role in ongoing investigations, and to take appropriate action to promote the security and integrity of ICT products and services and their supply chain.

The European Union and its Member States continue working towards the establishment of a Programme of Action to Advance Responsible State Behaviour in Cyberspace within the United Nations, building on the work of the UN Groups of Governmental Experts in this field, and the recent endorsement of this framework by the Open-ended Working Group.

The European Union and its Member States remain strongly committed and determined in their solidarity with their international partners in promoting a global, open, stable and secure cyberspace respecting human rights, fundamental freedoms, democratic values and principles and the rule of law, in order for everyone to safely live their lives online, as well as offline.

The Candidate Countries Turkey, the Republic of North Macedonia, Montenegro and Albania1 and the EFTA countries Iceland, Liechtenstein and Norway, members of the European Economic Area, as well as Ukraine and Georgia align themselves with this declaration.

1 The Republic of North Macedonia, Montenegro and Albania continue to be part of the Stabilisation and Association Process.

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