NIS versus NIS2: Spot the Differences Easily

  • What is the difference between NIS and NIS2?
  • Published by: André Hammer on Feb 07, 2024

NIS and NIS2 are often confused, but they have some important differences. In this article, we will explain these disparities, making it easier for you to understand. Whether you're a cybersecurity professional or simply interested in the digital world, this article will help you.

Origin and history of the NIS Directive

The NIS Directive was adopted in 2016. Its goal is to ensure a high level of security for network and information systems across the European Union. Its aim is to enhance the security and resilience of critical infrastructure sectors and key digital service providers. These include energy, transportation, banking, financial market infrastructures, health, water supply, and digital infrastructure sectors.

Additionally, member states are required to adopt a national strategy on the security of network and information systems. They also need to establish a competent authority to monitor and enforce the directive.

Due to the increase in cybersecurity incidents, NIS2 has emerged. It aims to strengthen the security of network and information systems in the EU. NIS2 expands the scope to include additional sectors, such as internet exchange points, domain name system service providers, and online marketplaces.

Moreover, NIS2 introduces additional security and incident reporting obligations for a broader range of digital service providers and online platforms. This reflects the evolving cyber threat landscape and the need for increased cybersecurity measures.

The emergence of NIS2 and its objectives

NIS2 has a main goal: to make network and information systems more secure across the EU. It covers more sectors, like key services and digital service providers, meaning more organizations must follow the rules. NIS2 makes organizations do more to stay secure, such as reporting incidents, increasing security measures, and being more transparent. This is to reduce the risk of cyber attacks.

The NIS2 directive shows the EU's dedication to making cybersecurity better, which is crucial with the growing number of cyber threats.

What is the difference between NIS and NIS2?

Expanding the scope: regulated sectors under NIS and NIS2

Under the NIS and NIS2 directives, regulated sectors include energy, transport, banking, financial market infrastructures, health, water supply, and digital infrastructure.

In addition, NIS2 has expanded the scope of regulated sectors to include new sectors such as online marketplaces, online search engines, and social networks. This expansion has significant implications for businesses operating in these sectors.

They now need to comply with the NIS2 security requirements to protect their digital assets and infrastructure against cyber threats. This means investing in enhanced cybersecurity measures, developing incident response plans, and ensuring compliance with the NIS2 requirements.

Businesses in the expanded sectors will need to do this to avoid penalties and reputational damage. The broader scope of regulated sectors under NIS2 reflects the evolving digital landscape and the increasing importance of cybersecurity across various industries.

Understanding the Enhanced Security Requirements

NIS Directive security requirements

The NIS Directive focuses on the resilience and security of operators of essential services and digital service providers. It requires adopting measures to manage risks and prevent and minimize the impact of incidents. Reporting significant incidents and cooperating with authorities is also mandatory.

The NIS2 Directive expands the scope to include online marketplaces and search engines. It introduces additional security requirements for communication network security and specific obligations for cloud computing services.

To prepare for the transition from NIS to NIS2, organizations should conduct a thorough review of their current security practices. This includes enhancing incident response capabilities, implementing more robust cybersecurity measures, and ensuring compliance with the specific security requirements outlined in the NIS2 Directive.

Adopting stricter security measures in the NIS2 directive

The NIS2 directive has specific security measures. These include incident response and notification, identification and authentication, and encryption of sensitive data.

Compared to the original NIS directive, NIS2 enforces stricter security requirements. It covers a broader range of digital service providers and eliminates the exclusion of micro and small businesses.

For organisations in regulated sectors, adopting stricter security measures under the NIS2 directive means focusing more on proactive cybersecurity. This involves implementing robust security practices to reduce the growing cybersecurity risks faced by critical infrastructure operators, digital service providers, and online marketplaces.

Dive into Compliance Obligations

Compliance under the original NIS directive

Under the original NIS directive, organizations had to follow rules like using proper security measures and telling authorities about important incidents. If they didn't follow these rules, they could get fined.

When NIS changed to NIS2, organizations got ready for the new rules by checking and updating their security measures and plans for dealing with incidents. They did things like assessing risks, using the best industry practices, and making sure their network and information systems were secure.

By knowing the differences between NIS and NIS2, organizations got ready for the new rules and kept from getting fined for not following them.

Enhanced compliance requirements in NIS2

NIS2 has stricter compliance requirements than the original NIS directive. It focuses more on security measures for digital service providers, online marketplaces, and search engines.

The regulated sectors under NIS2 include not only energy, transport, and health sectors but also other areas like drinking water supply, waste water management, and digital infrastructure.

NIS2 also imposes harsher penalties for non-compliance, with potential fines of up to 2% of the organization’s global turnover, to enhance cybersecurity measures.

Incident Reporting under NIS and NIS2

Incident reporting framework in NIS

The incident reporting framework in NIS is a structured system designed to report and respond to cybersecurity incidents. It has clear guidelines for what constitutes an incident, reporting timelines, and procedures to follow when an incident occurs.

NIS2 has revised incident reporting timelines and thresholds to provide a more comprehensive overview of cybersecurity incidents. The main difference between NIS and NIS2 is in the specific reporting requirements, such as the types of incidents to report, thresholds, and deadlines. This ensures that both NIS and NIS2 can adapt to new threats in a timely manner.

Revised incident reporting timelines and thresholds in NIS2

Revised incident reporting timelines and thresholds in NIS2 require digital service providers and operators of essential services to report cybersecurity incidents to relevant national authorities within a specific timeframe.

The reporting timelines vary depending on the severity of the incident, with shorter deadlines for more serious events. Additionally, NIS2 introduces new thresholds for incident reporting, including a broader scope of digital service providers and operators of essential services that are required to comply with the directive.

These changes differ from the original NIS directive, which had more limited reporting requirements and thresholds. For example, NIS2 lowers the threshold for digital service providers, expanding the types of organizations that are now subject to reporting requirements.

These revised timelines and thresholds in NIS2 represent a concerted effort to enhance cybersecurity and address the evolving digital landscape, ensuring that critical infrastructure and digital services are adequately protected from cyber threats.

Penalties for Non-compliance

Sanctions and fines under the original NIS directive

Under the original NIS directive, organizations could be fined up to €100,000 for not following the rules. The sanctions could include warnings, temporary bans on certain activities, and exposing the infringement publicly.

In the newer NIS2, the fines for not following the rules have been increased to up to €20 million or up to 4% of the operator's global annual turnover. NIS2 also introduces structural changes that require member states to create a national strategy for the security of network and information systems.

To enforce these sanctions and fines, the directive requires each member state to appoint one or more national competent authorities responsible for enforcing the directive. There must also be effective mechanisms in place to promote sharing of information and cooperation among regulatory authorities.

Tougher penalties for non-compliance in NIS2

Under the NIS2 directive, there are tougher penalties for not following the rules. The enhanced requirements will have a big impact on how organizations handle security. The sanctions and fines for not following NIS2 will be stricter. These changes aim to make cybersecurity stronger and make sure organizations protect their networks and information systems. Organizations will need to have strong security measures and ways to report if they're following the rules.

If they don't, they might have to pay big fines. NIS2 is stricter than before, showing how important cybersecurity is in today's digital world.

Prepare for the Transition from NIS 1 to NIS2

Checklist for organizations affected by NIS2

NIS2 expands the scope of the original NIS directive. It now includes cloud infrastructure, internet exchanges, and domain name system service providers within its rules. NIS2 also requires more stringent security measures from digital service providers of all sizes. It establishes clear deadlines for compliance. Organizations in the Member States have until August 2023 to ensure full compliance.

To promote a culture of security, affected organizations should establish comprehensive security policies. They should also conduct regular security assessments and provide adequate training for their employees. Moreover, they should implement robust security measures like encryption, multi-factor authentication, and continuous monitoring. These measures will safeguard their infrastructure and customer data against cyber threats.

Deadlines for compliance with NIS2

Introduced in 2016, the original NIS directive set standards for UK organizations to protect essential services from cyber threats. NIS2, reflecting changes in the digital landscape, expands the directive to cover more digital service providers and introduces new compliance deadlines.

NIS2's compliance deadlines vary depending on the type of organization. For instance, operators of essential services must comply within 18 months, while digital service providers have 24 months. In contrast, the original NIS directive had a uniform deadline of 21 months for all organizations.

These differing deadlines show the increasing importance of cybersecurity in the UK and recognize the varying levels of digital infrastructure and services across organizations.

Proactive approach to meet NIS2 requirements

Organizations can improve their security by conducting regular cybersecurity risk assessments and monitoring threat intelligence. This helps in identifying and addressing potential vulnerabilities, staying ahead of security threats, and complying with NIS2 regulations.

To ensure a smooth transition from NIS to NIS2, organizations should develop robust incident response plans and ensure staff are well-trained in cybersecurity best practices. Creating a security culture involves ongoing staff training, awareness programs, clear cybersecurity policies, and appointing dedicated security personnel.

Promoting a Culture of Security within Organizations

Impact of NIS on corporate security culture

The NIS Directive has changed how organisations approach security. It has set out rules for essential service providers to report security incidents. This has made risk management and incident response a crucial part of security culture.

The NIS2 directive builds on this by expanding the rules to cover digital service providers as well. This means more entities are now covered by the rules, and there are new security and incident reporting requirements.

The differences between NIS and NIS2 lie in the wider range of entities covered and the new security and incident reporting rules introduced by NIS2. This means organisations need to take a more proactive approach to security and incident response to keep up with the changing threats and protect critical infrastructure and digital services.

Enhancing security culture through NIS2's proactive approach

NIS2 focuses on early threat detection and rapid response. This encourages a shift towards a preventive and proactive security culture. The differences from the original NIS directive include broader coverage of critical infrastructure sectors, mandatory security incident reporting, and regular security audits and risk assessments. Organisations can comply by implementing incident response plans, reviewing security policies, and investing in staff training.

This will help them be more resilientagainst cyber threats and contribute to a stronger security culture.

Managing Assets and Services under NIS2

Identification of assets and critical services in NIS

Organizations must identify their assets and critical services under the NIS directive. This involves conducting risk assessments and implementing security measures. They assess the potential impact of security incidents on their operations and services.

For example, they identify key IT systems, networks, data, and critical business processes that must be protected.

Similarly, under the NIS2 directive, measures such as encryption, access controls, and regular security audits can be taken to protect essential digital services. Organizations can deploy firewalls, intrusion detection systems, and multi-factor authentication to safeguard their digital infrastructure. They can also establish incident response plans and conduct regular employee training to mitigate cybersecurity risks.

Protection of essential and digital services under NIS2

NIS2 introduces changes from the original NIS directive. It expands the scope to include more digital service providers like online marketplaces and search engines. This means more companies must follow cybersecurity requirements.

NIS2 also introduces new incident reporting timelines and thresholds for essential and digital services. For instance, providers must report incidents to authorities within 72 hours, down from the 24-hour requirement in the original NIS directive.

The new directive outlines specific compliance requirements for digital infrastructure providers, emphasizing the protection of essential and digital services.


NIS and NIS2 are versions of Nissan's Information System, used in their vehicles. They have many similarities but also some key differences. Identifying these differences can help vehicle owners understand their system and its features better.

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Please reach out to us with any questions or if you would like a chat about your opportunity with the NIS 2 Lead Implementer certification and how you best achieve it. 


What are the main differences between NIS and NIS2?

The main differences between NIS and NIS2 are the improved data protection measures and updated authentication mechanisms in NIS2. For example, NIS2 requires stronger authentication methods such as biometric or hardware tokens.

How can I easily distinguish between NIS and NIS2?

NIS uses a broadcast-based communication model, while NIS2 uses a client-server model. For example, NIS2 includes improved security features such as encryption and supports larger network sizes.

What are the key features that set NIS apart from NIS2?

NIS2 includes additional security measures like multi-factor authentication and blockchain technology, while NIS focuses on real-time network monitoring and proactive threat detection.

Are there any compatibility issues between NIS and NIS2?

No, there are no compatibility issues between NIS and NIS2. They are designed to work together seamlessly.

How can I make the transition from NIS to NIS2 seamlessly?

To transition seamlessly from NIS to NIS2, carefully plan and schedule the migration process, update all necessary software and hardware, conduct thorough testing, and provide comprehensive training to users. Additionally, consult with experts and refer to official documentation for guidance.

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