And even if it would be, it would make perfect sense considering the prominent position of the Dutch IT infrastructure
Dutch Socialist Party MP Sharon Gesthuizen noted that McAfee claimed that 75% of malware distributing servers for Europe and the Middle East would be hosted in The Netherlands. McAfee also claimed that 37% of all globally distributed malware originates from The Netherlands. As such, she went and asked the Minister of Justice in The Netherlands whether he was planning on doing something about this issue and other issues such as spam, piracy and rogue providers.
First of all the Minister of Justice Ivo Opstelten seems to suggest that McAfee has it wrong, and Kaspersky’s figures are much more reliable. Kaspersky argues that ‘only’ 12% of all malware originates from The Netherlands.
Secondly, the Minister tries to put the relevance of the country being a major malware distributor in a different perspective by arguing it is a logical consequence of the fact that most major data centers and hosting providers for the region are located in The Netherlands as well as the Amsterdam Internet Exchange.
In any event, the Minister of Justice doesn’t agree that The Netherlands is a major source of malware and contaminated websites. In his letter he does seem to suggest that:
1. Other countries may have a less protected IT infrastructure and end users may not be running anti-virus or firewall software;
2. ISPs and hosting providers are taking their job to offer secure access to the internet very seriously;
3. He will ask the government facilitated initiative ‘Platform Internet Security‘ to review whether malicious intent or serious negligence by providers or individuals – who seem to be facilitating malware distribution or other types of cybercrime – should be sanctioned;
The Minister did confirm that the National Cyber Security Center in The Netherlands runs into so-called ‘rogue providers’ but he feels that there are plenty of ways to deal with those from a regulatory perspective and with help of prosecution authorities.
Dutch language news article:
Dutch MP Sharon Gesthuizen asks Minister of Justice for more stringent regulatory climate for hosting provider activities, in an attempt to combat cybercrime in/from the Netherlands