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ITU-IMPACT to hold Arab region cross-border cyber drill

by david.nunes

ITU-IMPACT to hold Arab region cross-border cyber drill

First region-wide test of cybersecurity capabilities

Geneva, 29 June 2012 – ITU and its cybersecurity partner, the International Multilateral Partnership Against Cyber Threats (IMPACT), are organizing the first UN-backed cross border cyber drill designed to test the Arab region’s cyber response capabilities and improve readiness and reaction in the event of a theoretical future cyber attack.

The cyber drill is the second in a series of ITU-IMPACT events being held around the world to help countries strengthen their cybersecurity frameworks. The first was held in Southeast Asia region in December 2011, involving Cambodia, Lao P.D.R., Myanmar and Viet Nam.

The drill forms part of an ITU-IMPACT Arab region cybersecurity workshop, to be held in Amman, Jordan from 15-17 July, and hosted by Jordan’s Ministry of Information and Communications Technology.

More than ten Arab States will participate in the workshop, which will address key topics such as botnets, Child Online Protection (COP) and mobile security. The third day of the event will feature the ITU-IMPACT Applied Learning for Emergency Response Team (ALERT) cyber drill, which will see teams from six Arab countries, along with ITU-IMPACT’s own cybersecurity experts, take part in a simulated and coordinated exercise to assess the cybersecurity emergency readiness of each country and their incident response capabilities in mitigating and countering cyber attacks.

“Cybersecurity has become a global priority, and no nation, no matter how technologically advanced, can isolate itself from today’s increasingly sophisticated threats,” said ITU Secretary-General Dr Hamadoun Touré. “With 143 countries now part of the ITU-IMPACT coalition and with strong backing from global industry giants and leading partners from academia, I am pleased to note that ITU-IMPACT is now largest cybersecurity alliance of its kind in the world. This will help us ensure all our Members, including the world’s Least Developed Countries, have affordable access to state-of-the-art cyber defence strategies.”

IMPACT Chairman Datuk Mohd Noor Amin emphasized the importance of a global approach to cyberthreats that are, by their nature, borderless, and sharing common denominators. “The increasing complexities of cyber attacks and the constantly evolving threat landscape make it imperative that any endeavour towards mitigating those risks is continuously carried out and supported. That is why this regional workshop and cyber drill is both essential and timely,” he said.

The workshop aims to equip participants with expert professional knowledge of cyber incident response and handling, network and web security, malware analysis and the steps needed to establish effective national Computer Incident Response Teams (CIRTs). Participants will also be exposed to various cybersecurity scenarios based on case studies and practical work. The workshop aspires to nurture a culture of information security and assist in developing technical capabilities on CIRT operations, and improve overall cybersecurity readiness across the region.

The drill and workshop are being held in collaboration with ITU-IMPACT’s key industry partners, including ABI Research, The Cyber Guardian and Kaspersky Lab, along with the support of other ITU-IMPACT partners including Trend Micro and F-Secure.

The ITU-IMPACT global partnership now embraces over 200 industry, academic and international organizations. As the cybersecurity executing arm of ITU, IMPACT is entrusted with the task of providing cybersecurity support and services to ITU’s Member States and other organizations within the UN system.

About ITU
ITU is the leading United Nations agency for information and communication technology. For over 145 years, ITU has coordinated the shared global use of the radio spectrum, promoted international cooperation in assigning satellite orbits, worked to improve communication infrastructure in the developing world, and established the worldwide standards that foster seamless interconnection of a vast range of communications systems. From broadband networks to new-generation wireless technologies, aeronautical and maritime navigation, radio astronomy, satellite-based meteorology and converging fixed-mobile phone, Internet and broadcasting technologies, ITU is committed to connecting the world.

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