The latest Connecting Europe Facility (CEF) cybersecurity call offers funding opportunities to key stakeholders identified by the NIS Directive such as European Computer Security Incident Response Teams (CSIRTs), operators of essential services (e.g. banks, hospitals, electricity and gas providers, railways, airlines, domain name providers, etc.) and various public authorities. For the first time European cybersecurity certifications authorities are also eligible to apply for this programme in order to allow them seize the EU Cybersecurity Act.

The Connecting Europe Facility (CEF) cybersecurity call seeks to fund projects aiming at improving cybersecurity cross border cooperation between the key stakeholders identified by the NIS Directive as well as the sharing of information. In particular this call has five areas of priorities:

  1. Projects which promote co-operation among cybersecurity certification authorities in the EU Member States in order to support the implementation of the part of the EU Cybersecurity Act related to the EU cybersecurity certification framework for ICT products, services and processes (a minimum of €1 million is prioritised for such projects under this call)
  2. Projects which allow operators of essential services (OES) to develop their internal capacity building and assist them in setting up national and European level Information Sharing and Analysis Center (ISACs) for enhancing information sharing and effective situational awareness. (a minimum of €3 million is prioritised for such projects under this call)
  3. Projects which support National cybersecurity Competent Authorities and Single Points of Contact to build up in-house capabilities for facilitating reporting of notifications under the NIS Directive and for structured interaction with the regulated industry, notably operators of essential services and digital service providers. 
  4. Projects which seek to build up trust and confidence between public authorities in different EU Member States (with a consortium of at least two Member State authorities) in order to undertake trans-European cybersecurity cooperation.
  5. Projects which aim at improving cybersecurity cross border cooperation between European CSIRTs (with a minimum of two CSIRTs from different EU Member States) and at promoting the joint use of the MeliCERTes, the EU funded facility for cross-border co-operation and data exchange between two or more CSIRTs.

Unlike previous calls, there is no upper limit of the amount of funding to be sought per grant. Furthermore, each project can now run for a period of up to three years.

This CEF cybersecurity call is one of the five areas currently funded under the 2019 CEF Telecom work programme. It is the second call published this year. In 2019, the CEF Telecom will provide up to a total of €44.2 million in funding through grants for European Digital Service Infrastructures. The CEF Telecom funding supports projects of common interest that improve the daily life of citizens, businesses and public administrations and contribute to the development of a Digital Single Market by deploying European digital infrastructures across the EU.

How to apply?

Applicants should submit their proposal through the dedicated proposal submission system, accessible from the individual call webpages on the 2019 CEF Telecom Calls web page. All call documents and additional background information are also available on the individual call webpages. Please remember that the deadline for 2019-2 call is 14 November 2019 at 17:00 Brussels time.

When will the grants be awarded?

The evaluation of the proposals is expected to start in December 2019. The results of the evaluation and the decision on the allocation of grants will be announced as of May 2020.

Who is the contact point for this call?

The Innovation and Networks Executive Agency (INEA) manages the call for proposals and follows up the technical and financial implementation of the projects with the beneficiaries, providing technical expertise and high quality programme implementation.

A helpdesk is also available to answer your questions on the call for proposals.

More information

CEF Cybersecurity call - infographic

CEF Telecom supported actions - brochure

2019 CEF Telecom calls

2019 – 2020 CEF Telecom Work Programme