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Cyber security: Governments urged to work with other players

Saturday February 1 2020

Dr Yuval Stainitz

Israel's Energy Minister Dr Yuval Stainitz speaking during the seventh edition of the annual CyberTech Global forum in Tel Aviv on January 29, 2020. PHOTO | FAUSTINE NGILA | NATION MEDIA GROUP 

FAUSTINE NGILA
By FAUSTINE NGILA
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IN TEL AVIV, ISRAEL

World governments have been urged to collaborate with the private sector, non-governmental bodies and professionals to achieve a holistic ecosystem of global cyber monitoring and coordination.

Addressing delegates during the seventh edition of the annual CyberTech Global conference in Tel Aviv, global cyber security experts warned multinationals and governments against going it alone in the fight against cyber insecurity.

"In cyber war, you can never succeed by working alone as a government agency, company or country. You need to involve every stakeholder in monitoring, analysing, detecting and halting cyber threats. If you don't, you will fail," a senior Israeli cyber official warned.

 Hundreds of cyber security companies from different countries camped at the Expo Center in Tel Aviv for three days to showcase their innovations in thwarting cybercrime during the international Cybertech Global 2020.

Thousands of visitors from around the world arrived in Israel for the event that constitutes a unique meeting point for decision-makers, government officials, industry executives, entrepreneurs, major Venture Capital funds, investors and researchers.

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The conference culminated in the broad aspects of the cyber revolution and how it affects human lives in the health, career, transportation, economy, judicial and consumer aspects.

A grand exhibition place alongside the conference was well prepared, and hundreds of prominent companies presented their newest developments inCloud Computing, Artificial Intelligence, Deep Learning, Blockchain and Quantum Computing in blocking hacking attempts.

Prof Daniel Chamovitz, president of Ben-Gurion University of the Negev expressed his admiration to the number of tech experts who flocked Israel saying he was glad to be a sponsor for the past 7 years.

"David Ben Gurion, our first prime minister, said many years ago that in order to be a realist in Israel you need to believe in miracles. Don't think even he would have imagined the miracle Be'er Sheva would become.  What we have built here," he said.

GLOBAL CENTRE

Israel has built a central cybersecurity global coordination centre in Be'er Sheva, south of the country, concocting an ecosystem similar to the one in America's MIT, welcoming all governments to collaborate in cyber monitoring.

"This is truly a miracle. Only last week we announced the launch of the innovation center adjacent to the university. The Israeli army and local industry have really found the right formula to deal with the cyber insecurity challenge. A place where all relevant stakeholders can sit together over coffee working out problems," he added.

Scientists in Ben -Gurion are already working on top edge projects to ensure the future of businesses around the globe is secure, as dark web masters also advance their tricks.

Prof Eviatar Matania, Founding Head of Tel Aviv University said the forum brings into one event customers, government officials, industry experts together locally and globally to secure the technology ecosystem.

"It is not an exhibition but an eco-system event. In Israel we try to be the eco-system which brings all sectors together. If you know where to put your budget and where to direct your efforts, you can apply this globally in other sectors.

"Cybersecurity is the enabler. Without it we won't be able to gain our perspective out on AI, it's the only enabler from my point of view for the global effort to lead us all through this global era," he remarked.

NECESSITY TO DEFEND

Maj Gen (Res), Yiftah Ron Tal, Chairman of the Board, Israel Electric Corporation said attacks are getting more potent as well as the necessity to defend, especially threats from Iran.

"With the many challenges the field is presenting, three revolutions will be united - with a higher percentage of renewable energy, green energy and smart energy. These trends indicate that we must advance to a world with almost unlimited energy," he said.

With the advent of the Internet of Things (IoT), everyone is getting connected to devices, and that makes the job easier for hackers.

"Gap is quickly closing for corporations and companies. The threat is becoming more existential for countries and nations today. Therefore, we must constantly adapt and improve our abilities."

Last year, according to him, the average number of cyber suspected events per second was 11,100.

"Attacks can happen anywhere and sophistication is growing all the time. This requires development of strong collaborated procedures in the near future," he advised.

Every organization was urged to think and behave cyber by training workers to fight in cyber warfare. The new rule is out of the box solutions. 

MILITARY JOURNALIST

The Cybertech event, founded in Israel by a military correspondent is considered the largest cyber event holder in the world outside the United States, with conferences taking place in New York, Indianapolis, Rome, Singapore, Africa, Panama, Tokyo, Kigali and Bangkok.

The event's founder Mr Amir Rapaport, a former military correspondent, said the quick growth of the cyber industry and the Cybertech event as a worldwide event in Tel Aviv shows that the cyber field is leading an historic revolution, changing the global economy and impacting on the entire human race.

"Israeli companies have a major role in this revolution by developing new cyber technologies. The new record of international delegations at Cybertech, shows how the cyber revolution is happening," he said.