The first of january 2006 the belgian institute BIPT that is responsable for controlling if the belgian ISP's have antivirus-defenses and protect their customers (you) and give their customers a free protectionsoftware WILL BE DISSOLVED if no IMMEDIATE action is taken. The reason is that the flemish minister Bourgeois has showed no intention of signing a interregional agreement so that the institution will be dissolved what will result in total chaos for a few years. Not only on the virus front, but also the control of the GSM, phone services and any other data transportation service. The chaos will be felt in Belgium and in neigboring countries.
Belgian ISP's are obliged under recent law voted this year (inspired by http://manifest.skynetblogs.be) to give this protection and do this antimalware filtering on ISP level for free. They are not happy with this, but since the law has been published belgian ISP's have begun installing antimalwaredefenses. The biggest ISP Belgacom has stopped 3 billion viruses from arriving in the mailboxes of its clients  (and so on the belgian network) this year.
Nobody will be able to oblige them to do the same thing next year.
The direct newcomer-challenger on the adsl service Tele2 does nothing of this sort and there won't be anyone to oblige them to do something (even if according to a very recent study only half of the belgian internetusers have an antivirus installed)
So if minister Bourgeois and the flemish government don't sign this cooperation agreement before the first of january 2006, the BIPT (www.bipt.be) will cease to exist and nothing will be there to replace it.
The mailaddress of the responsable belgium minister is marc.verwilghen@vldwest.be
The mailaddress of the responsable belgian Minister of ICT is koen.pardon@e-gov.be
The mailaddress of the flemish prime minister is kabinet.leterme@vlaanderen.be
The mailaddress of the (ir)responsable flemish minister is kabinet.bourgeois@vlaanderen.be
as securityprofessionals we can't afford to lose this battle because it is only with a central belgium institution cooperating with the regions that we can keep the belgian internet safer than it was ever before and there is still a long way to go, but it is a start. And this is always better than  nothing.
send a mail, send anything with the title  Keep the belgian internet safe, safe the bipt
contact your local politician, contact the press
make a three billion virus difference
flemish parlementarians  http://www.vlaamsparlement.be/Proteus4/p3app/jsppages/zoe...
flemish government http://www.vlaanderen.be/servlet/Satellite?cid=1103027435...

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