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Maritime Forum

CISE technical details

technological structure to allow for secure and fully interoperable exchange of information across borders and sectors

The Maritime CISE is an ambitious project involving several hundred maritime surveillance authorities working throughout all Member States, but also reaching globally to anywhere in the European maritime domain.

One of the major challenges is the collective development of the technological structure to allow for secure and fully interoperable exchange of information across borders and sectors, which at present rely on a great variety of systems. CISE is not an application, nor software, a programme or interface, but rather a set of guidelines (aiming to become standards) to ensure interoperability for effective, timely and confidential sharing of relevant information across Europe. CISE will be decentralised, case-specific and data-centric. It does not produce nor process intelligence data, being limited to allowing automated exchange of multi-use information between different countries and surveillance authorities.

What CISE will do is make sure that the systems and machines of all authorities can properly communicate with each other, with data appearing automatically in their own screens, for their own interpretation.

To arrive at the best technical solutions for CISE, the European Commission has carried out a series of consultations, practical exercises and assessments[1] engaging the different maritime surveillance stakeholders. From these was defined a “Hybrid model”, incorporating the know-how, assets, needs and preferences of all players into a single vision for the optimum IT design (common language, IT architecture and network infrastructure). The Maritime CISE therefore ensures a neutral solution that matches the requirements of all parties, and can be usable and understandable by all systems, especially regarding:

  • Technical details, which include what functions will be offered by CISE, alongside messaging protocols.
  • IT architecture, which deals with the common digital language and the hierarchies in structures and data flows.
  • Semantic details, which deal with the different models for data classification and the exchange of information, as well as how to build a catalogue of datasets and a dictionary of data types and terms.
  • Network infrastructure, which deals with how systems and computers are actually interconnected, across surveillance assets, sectors and borders.

The work, coordinated by DG MARE, involves the active participation of the EC general directorates DIGIT and Joint Research Centre, as well as IT experts from the different sectors and Member States.

Once interoperability is guaranteed by the Maritime CISE, independent IT suppliers will be charged by maritime surveillance authorities with providing tailor-made applications and systems, with scope for new services and functionalities thanks to CISE’s standards’ based guidelines for innovation.

[1] COMMISSION STAFF WORKING DOCUMENT: IMPACT ASSESSMENT Accompanying the document “Communication on a common information sharing environment for the EU maritime domain”