EGIDA is launched, the first Cervera Network for privacy protection


Gradiant leads the only national network of excellence in security and privacy technologies of the Cervera Program

Composed by Gradiant, Fidesol, Ikerlan and Vicomtech, ÉGIDA brings the experience of the technology centres from three different Spanish Regions

EGIDA, the National Network of Excellence in security and privacy technologies, was created this year with the aim of strengthening applied research, reinforcing the technological capabilities of the centres that make it up and promoting collaboration with companies.

With an investment of 3.3 million euros and formed by Gradiant (leader), Fidesol, Ikerlan and Vicomtech, EGIDA materializes as the first and only national network of security and privacy technologies formed by technology centres of excellence. This group arises within the framework of the Cervera Programme for Technology Centres, the national commitment to develop market-oriented research promoted by the Ministry of Science and Innovation and the Centre for Industrial Technological Development (CDTI).

“Cybersecurity has always been a strategic commitment for Gradiant, which we have strengthened in recent years as it is one of the essential technologies for digital transformation along with connectivity and artificial intelligence. Betting determined and continuous has led us to become a reference, and we keep on working to improve ourselves day by day, especially in moments like the current one in which trust in information systems, security and privacy become more important than ever”, explains Luis Pérez-Freire, executive director of Gradiant, the technology centre that leads ÉGIDA.


EGIDA, at the forefront of cybersecurity

“In cybersecurity, collaboration is essential. We work with technology to protect our information systems, always thinking about the impact they will have on society. The alliance that we have forged Gradiant, Fidesol, Ikerlan and Vicomtech allows us to be fully aware of the transformative role that technological innovation plays in security and privacy for both individuals and companies, which is why we take this opportunity as a great motivating challenge to advance in this field and place Spain on the international map” points out Juan González, director of EGIDA and director of Security and Privacy at Gradiant.

EGIDA, the only network of the Cervera Programme for Technologyl Centres of Excellence led by a Galician centre, will approach research in security and privacy technologies from 4 fields, but always with a common objective: the protection of information privacy. Thus, the centres that make up the network consortium will work on 4 technical objectives focused on applied cryptography technologies, for the protection of confidential information: personal or sensitive data, etc.; digital identity and privacy, for fraud prevention through the creation, verification and use of digital identity; security in distributed systems, to improve security in disruptive technologies and their use with IoT, 5G or DLT / blockchain technologies; and development of secure information systems to increase confidence in information systems against cyberattacks.

Focusing on positioning Spain in the international challenges of information security, EGIDA will align its objectives with the European and Spanish cybersecurity strategy to work to protect the information and privacy of users. In this way, the centres will train specialized professionals and develop technology to increase confidence in current information systems.


Commitments: technology transfer and job creation

EGIDA’s ultimate goal is to bring security and privacy technologies closer to companies, in such a way that technology centres and industry strengthen the national innovation system, placing Spain at the forefront of the cybersecurity technology market. For this, EGIDA has the support of a Scientific-Advisory Committee of which the National Institute of Cybersecurity (INCIBE), Alastria, AEI Cybersecurity, AENOR, IDC Research Spain, Vector ITC Group, the National Network of Excellence in Research in Cybersecurity (RENIC); ElevenPaths, Telefónica’s global cybersecurity unit; BBVA and the National Cryptologic Centre (CCN).

Likewise, another of EGIDA’s goals is the generation of qualified employment in R&D&I. During the 3 years of the network (2020-2022), 80 engineers and researchers will work to align strategies and actions in research and development, attract and retain talent. A joint commitment of 4 technology centres of excellence to be at the forefront of international cybersecurity.

In this sense, EGIDA will facilitate the definition of long-term professional careers, will contribute to the specialization of researchers and will promote the international exchange of technological professionals. With all this, the initiative will promote the recruitment and retention of highly qualified national and international talent.


A firm commitment to R&D&I

Industrial digitization requires an investment in innovation, essential for its proper development. “The commitment to technological innovation by the Public Administrations is essential for economic, industrial and social development. Instruments such as the Cervera Programme emphasise the importance of public-private collaboration and the fundamental role played by technology centres in promoting not only the competitiveness of companies, but also our competitiveness as a country. For this, it is essential to consolidate a leadership position in strategic technologies, such as cybersecurity” Pérez-Freire points out.

In this context, the Cervera Programme – launched by the Ministry of Science and Innovation – plays an enabling role for Spanish technology centres to develop market-oriented research. Artificial intelligence, advanced mobile networks, information protection, deep learning, health technologies, advanced materials, eco-innovation, energy transition, safe and healthy food chain, smart manufacturing and smart transport are the 12 ‘Cervera’ Technologies that it promotes the programme.