The EURNAT Region: Updates on the International Aviation Trust Framework  

The EURNAT Regional Office is accredited to 56 States across the North Atlantic, Europe, North Africa, and Central Asia. In addition, it has special arrangements with two North American States (Canada and United States) that closely collaborate with the EURNAT Regional Office on matters related to the North Atlantic.


The rapid evolution of civil aviation is being challenged by greater efficiency demands, digital transformation of the aviation ecosystem, swift introduction of new entrants (unmanned aircraft systems (UAS), high altitude vehicles, etc.), anticipated passenger and freighter growth, and new emerging cyber threats which may jeopardize the safety and business continuity.

To ensure the evolution of the aviation system meets the expectations of societies in general and the aviation community in particular in an information-rich environment, there is a need for a safe, secure and resilient system for exchanging information. In this context, an international aviation trust framework helps to facilitate the resilient and secure exchange of information on a global basis, which is essential to allow the transformation of the air navigation system as reflected in the Global Air Navigation Plan (GANP) and maintain the agreed levels of safety.

ICAO established the Trust Framework Study Group (TFSG) in 2019 to work through three working groups: operations, digital identity, and network. Since then, the working groups have progressed the development of policy and guidance material for a global and interoperable aviation trust framework that will enable trusted ground-ground, air-ground, and air-air exchange of information among all current and prospective aviation stakeholders. In particular, the groups are reviewing the concept of operations, defining use cases, developing a digital certificate policy, and identifying the security and access control requirements to a global resilient aviation interoperable network.

In May 2022 ICAO’s EUR/NAT Office organized a high-level briefing on cybersecurity for the EUR/NAT DGCA conference. Participants were provided updates on the development of the International Aviation Trust Framework (IATF) that is being carried out by ICAO in coordination with aviation and non-aviation industry and regulators. The aim is to reduce the cyber-attack surface and increase the resilience of the air navigation system.

About the author

Saulo Da Silva is Chief of the Global Interoperable Systems Section in ICAO’s Air Navigation Bureau