The creation of a pan-European system to notify small and medium-size businesses of IT security threats came a step closer on Tuesday, as security experts from industry and academia refined plans for the European Information Sharing and Alert System (EISAS) at a conference in Berlin.

The conference attendees, from 27 European Union countries, are considering how best to distribute information about new threats across the European Union, said Ulf Bergstrom, press officer for the European Network and Information Security Agency (ENISA), the EU's computer security agency.

An interim feasibility study published on Tuesday outlines several proposals for the system.

One proposal calls for a multi-lingual portal that collects and publishes security information from member countries. Another idea under consideration would have individual countries collecting security information and publishing it in their own language on websites, then feeding that information to other countries.

Further specifics on exactly how those scenarios would work are under discussion, Bergstrom said.

Bergstrom said the focus is on keeping the information accessible as possible for end users and also in their own native language. Funding issues, including cost of translation, are also being discussed, he said. The delegates' input will be included in a final feasibility study, due for release later this month, Bergstrom said.

That study will be forwarded to the European Commission, which will give its opinion before passing the report around September or October to the European Parliament and European Council for consideration, Bergstrom said.