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Global CyberSecurity Roadshow 2021-22 launches ahead of Geneva Summit

An interview in Tribune de Genève with Ambassador Jürg Lauber, Chair of the United Nations on Cybersecurity, that just completed a two year review of global cybersecurity for the United Nations General Assembly, provided the “entrée” for the May 31st Cybersecurity Roadshow kickoff.

June 11, 2021 - New Eastern Europe - Events

Amb. Lauber placed the launch in the context of the upcoming Biden-Putin Summit where cybersecurity will be front and center after a series of devastating cyberattacks in the United States, allegedly originating in Russia, including the Colonial Pipeline attacks that shocked global oil markets and caused panic runs on gas stations across the nation.  
 
The Cybersecurity Roadshow featured a rich line-up of speakers including Ambassador Lauber, former National Security Agency (NSA) director – General Keith Alexander, award-winning security technologist and best-selling author Bruce Schneier, and Army Cyber Institute at West Point director, Col. Jeffrey Erickson. 
 
This agora brought together participants from all continents, including international student organizations (technical universities – BEST, law schools – ELSA, medical universities – IFMSA and AIESEC), scientific institutes, universities, think tanks, international organisations, professional associations and diplomats for a discussion on cyber-diplomacy, cooperation in cyberspace, the need to integrate cybersecurity into digital innovation, and to close the education gap.

Experts emphasised the interdisciplinary nature of cybersecurity, the importance of cooperation and partnerships at all levels, and investing in quality education. The cybersecurity roadshow is a  platform for students, experts, scientists and diplomats. We do not hide that it is a demanding project addressed to outstanding and highly committed students but its benefits represent a very valuable asset – says Margo Koniuszewski, President of The Bridge Foundation.

The transition to a 4.0 economy and society calls for an inter-disciplinary approach to education and an emphasis on understanding the rapidly changing reality of a world that has gone digital, including its geopolitical implications. The functioning of the cybersecurity ecosystem should be seen as a cluster of interconnected vessels.

 

Amb. Lauber quoted Kofi Annan’s famous saying – there is no development without security, no security without development, and none of them will exist without human rights – adding that today these three pillars are all highly dependent on cyber security.

General Alexander stressed that cyber defence must be transformed into a cooperative effort, and that the future for cybersecurity is through partnership and collective defence. 

B. Schneier underscored that cyber security should be a niche topic for experts to worry about. Security must be embedded into the design of everything, so that everyone can be safe without having to think about it, adding that the basics of cyber hygiene and habits apply to everyone, just like wearing a seatbelt in your car.
 
The complexity, expert nature of the cyber security domain and the need for cooperation and partnership was also pointed out by Col. J. Erickson who underscored that that if we are exchanging business cards when a crisis hits it is already too late.
 
The roadshow has created the Global Cyber Lab – a platform to build awareness and educate through action oriented projects. It engages students from different domains. We have to talk about cybersecurity in a wider context that covers technology, regulations and diplomacy. That’s why we integrate students from different fields IT/engineering, business, law, medicine, political and military studies. We need to communicate and cooperate within and across sectors to overcome silo-thinking and close the widening gap of cybersecurity education – concluded Margo Koniuszewski.
 
The Bridge Foundation
Non-profit organization with special consultative status with the United Nations Economic and Social Council (ECOSOC). It operates in Switzerland, Canada and Poland. It implements educational programs to address socio-economic and security challenges. The New Roadmap for CyberSecurity Education report can be found on the online platform of UNODA (United Nations Office for Disarmament Affairs)
 
New Eastern Europe is a media partner of The Bridge Foundation

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