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International Cyber Security Cooperation Initiative

In recent years, international cyber security issues have emerged repeatedly, causing a great impact on international security. It is imperative to further promote international cyber security cooperation. Recently, the EastWest Institute released the report Building Trust in Cyberspace, which summaries the key insights and data from the 3rd Worldwide Cyber security Summit held in New Delhi. Cyber security awareness needs to be raised. Based on a questionnaire survey of experts attending from over 300 countries and regions, the report shows that 93% believe cyber security risks are higher than a year ago; 62% say government understanding of cyber security and awareness of international cooperation is still in its infancy; and 55% are skeptical that their country will be safe from sophisticated cyber-attacks.

Christopher Painter, the US State Department’s Coordinator for Cyber Affairs, believes that just because cyberspace is free, it does not mean that everyone can disregard any laws, and that cyberspace also requires appropriate legal constraints. According to Burgess Cooper, Vice President and Chief Technology Security Officer at Vodafone India, cyber security is like a war and the key to dealing with it is to rehearse the possible security issues that may arise. The art of war in cyber security is prevention, detection and error correction.

The report shows that the importance of cyber security is still not given the attention it deserves at the corporate level. Fifty per cent of the experts at the conference believe that the management of IT companies underestimate cyber security issues. Armen Sarkissian, vice president of the East-West Institute, said that many companies do not have any cyber oversight, or if they do, it is often “sidelined” due to budget constraints. Erin Nealy Cox, executive director of US digital risk management firm Stroz Friedberg, argues that IT vendor leaders need to set and follow more standards in cyber information security and shape their companies’ business strategies accordingly, rather than focusing on whether their investments will deliver a high return.

Submarine cables are important for cyber security

A current focus of public opinion regarding cyber security is cyber privacy, i.e. how the exchange of information is managed. There are no definite conclusions or criteria as to what information is allowed to be exchanged, what cannot be the subject of exchange, and how to classify and manage it.

The report shows that 41% of the experts present believe that online privacy is not adequately protected. Som Mittal, President of the National Association of Software and Services Companies of India, said that protecting the privacy of guests and companies is a goal that IT companies, and the IT industry and the country as a whole, need to strive to achieve.

Online privacy protection also needs to be pursued at a global level due to the various cross-collaborations and frequent interactions around the world. Technically, there are no national boundaries in cyberspace, but the national boundaries of privacy are clear, says Arbind Prasad, president of the Federation of Indian Chambers of Commerce and Industry. Some topics that can be talked about completely openly in the US are likely to be very sensitive in India. Therefore, the most critical issue is how to keep all parties, including the government, regulators, service providers, the public and the media, in line with the determination of online privacy.

In addition, the report highlights the importance of submarine cables in particular. Submarine cables are a critical part of the cyber infrastructure and an essential component of cyber security implementation and protection, but their role is often overlooked. Dean Veverka, Chairman of the International Cable Protection Committee, said that submarine cable networks are the physical carriers of cyberspace and the physical connections to cyber security, and that without them there would be no Internet as it is now, let alone cyberspace. Angela McKay, chief security strategist at Microsoft, said that people are now beginning to have an initial awareness of the cyber security issues involved in submarine cables, but more companies, organizations and institutions still need to take the initiative to join the discussion for the purpose of cooperation, to help all parties raise security awareness in this area and work together to find solutions.

It is difficult for one country to solve cyber security problems alone.

International cooperation is imperative to address cyber security issues. Gulshan Rai, Chief of the Indian Computer Emergency Response Team (CERT), suggested that the connectivity, mobility, socialization and consumerisation of networks have together shaped cyberspace. The problem of cyber security is so widespread and pervasive that it is impossible to leave any one part of the problem alone. Humanity is in a digital age and an age of interdependence. Countries around the world are increasingly interdependent due to economic, security and other factors. With the shift from the industrial age to the information age, the solution to cyber security issues also requires extensive international cooperation.

In addition to the three points above, Michael Chertoff, former Secretary of the US Department of Homeland Security, mentioned that countries have made little progress in recent years in preventing infringement of intellectual property rights and information espionage. There has also been no particular breakthrough in international cooperation on cyber security. This is mainly due to the fact that the various cyber security measures in place around the world vary greatly and there are significant differences between countries that cannot be agreed upon. India and IT Minister Kapil Sibal called for a “global agreement” on cyber security. For the first time in history, he said, humanity is on the same platform and facing common problems because of the internet. Cyber security is not a problem that can be solved by any one country alone, but requires a global effort.

Government-led cyber security initiatives are key to addressing cyber security issues such as disruptive attacks, massive data breaches, poor security and critical infrastructure attacks,” said Steve Turner, Security and Risk Analyst at the Forrester Institute. These initiatives provide consistent guidelines on how organizations and consumers can protect themselves, offer services for companies that do not have the knowledge or monetary means to do so, give legislative levers that can be used and the means to take offensive action against nation-state adversaries; and most importantly, establish the investigation of major cyber incidents and the sharing of critical information during or after these incidents. ” This demonstrates the need for greater international cyber security cooperation between governments, and that defence ministries should cooperate more and reach relevant consensus and agreements on cooperation to maintain the operation of international networks.

“With the development of the digital economy, the cyber security situation remains critical and the targets, adversaries, means, hazards and environment of cyber-attacks are changing, and I hope that domestic and international cyber security companies will work together to collaborate to address cyber security threats.” Ye Jian, Chief Operating Officer of 360 Group and CEO of 360 Government and Enterprise Security Group, said during the special dialogue session of the cyber security technology development and international cooperation sub-forum at the Wuzhen Summit of the World Internet Conference 2021 on September 27.

We have also seen that it is difficult for a single country to cope with the new challenges posed by cyber security threats. Therefore, Jian Ye called on domestic and international security departments to work together to create a framework of security capabilities for new threats and improve global cyber security protection. In an interview with media reporters after the forum, Ye Jian suggested that international cooperation in the Internet field has been relatively mature, but the international cooperation system for cyber security has not yet been fully established, so there is a need to further strengthen international cooperation in Defense security.

Editor in chief: Ovidiu Stanica

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