Moderated High-Level Policy Session 7

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[Read more session reports from the WSIS Forum 2018]

Mr Pavan Duggal, founder and chairman of the International Commission on Cyber Security Law, introduced the topic and asked the panel several leading questions.

Ms Doreen Bogdan-Martin, Strategic Planning and Membership Department, ITU, started her presentation affirming that the sustainable development goals (SDGs) of the 2030 Agenda will not be achieved unless an inclusive society is created, in a trusted, safe, and secure ICT world for all. She noted that security is a bigger issue now than it was in 2003, during the first WSIS phase, and that it is necessary for all countries to work together to achieve security, collaborating on the development of legal frameworks, strategies, and capacity building.

Duggal asked Ms Maria-Manuela Catrina, secretary of state at the Ministry of Communication and Information Society in Romania, what the role of governments must be in preserving a secure environment for ICTs, and how to prepare the new generation for cybersecurity. She answered that the role of government is to work together with other governments, since they cannot rely on the security of others or on their own alone. Governments must share information, concerns, and collaborate on the development of regulations. As to the capacitation of the new generation, Catrina believes the answer lies in cybersecurity education.

Ms Aruna Sundararajan, secretary (Telecom) and vice-minister at the Ministry of Communications in India,  was asked about the challenges faced by India for ensuring a safe and secure ICT sector. She noted that India is a leading digitalisation country, and so organic digitalisation gives more space for regulations. Sundararajan stated that, due to the large population, capabilities must be built very quickly. She outlined some building blocks of the Indian effort: a good comprehensive cybersecurity policy, development of the financial sector’s Computer Emergency and Response Teams (CERT), a National Centre for Cybersecurity. Sundararajan also considers data protection as key; a data protection law is being discussed. She believes it is important to ensure carriers, apps, and devices are equally secure.

In answer to a question on Turkey’s efforts to increase user confidence and the safe use of ICTs, Dr Ömer Fatih Sayan, president and chairman of the board at the Information and Communication Technologies Authority in Turkey explained that like any country, the use of ICTs in Turkey is rising constantly. This helps users not to lose confidence. He stated that the main efforts are in creating safe Internet centres, increasing awareness, and establishing an Internet helpline and a Safer Internet website. Fatih Sayan believes that ensuring user confidence requires close co-operation with many actors, both public and private. Therefore, the ministries of Youth, Education and Family have engaged in capacity building starting at childhood, in close collaboration with the private sector.

Mr Stein Schjolberg, chief judge in the Norwegian government, was asked if he considers that a Geneva Declaration on Cybersecurity is necessary. Schjolberg began his answer by stating that government norms and standards for cybersecurity must be achieved through a United Nations framework, and that regional and bilateral agreements will not be enough. A global framework is needed, since cyberthreats are a global threat. Schjolberg expressed discontent about the time it has taken for states to engage in a global solution. To him, a world with ground rules is a much safer world. He believes a Geneva Declaration is necessary to ensure that safer world.


By Pedro Vilela

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