Latvia ranks seventh worldwide in cyber-security (sort of)

Latvia was in the top ten countries in the world for cyber-security during 2014, according to a global survey by the International Telecommunications Union (ITU).

Latvia's Defense Ministry flagged up the achievement on Tuesday, though the ranking was actually released three months ago.

Latvia claims a highly creditable seventh spot, though there is a major caveat: many countries share identical rankings and the ITU adopts the unusual practice of not 'counting out' rankings so that, for example, if two countries share 'second place', the next country on the list is not awarded fourth place as would normally be the case, but third.

As a result, Latvia's 'seventh' place actually means it is one of the top 22 countries in the world.

It achieves the same score as Sweden and Turkey. The United States was ranked number one.

Estonia was the best-placed of the Baltic countries in joint fifth place with Lithuania in joint fourteenth.

According to the ITU, the rankings reflect the cybersecurity capabilities of nation states.

"Cybersecurity has a wide field of application that cuts across many industries and sectors. Each country’s level of development will therefore be analyzed within five categories: Legal Measures, Technical Measures, Organizational Measures, Capacity Building and Cooperation," the ITU said.

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