In the face of cyberwar, democratic countries need to unite strategically and operationally to ward off technological attacks on their security, values and way of life, said the participants of the CYBERSEC conference, which took place in Katowice on May 17-18.
The war in Ukraine and the associated Russian cyber-aggression have highlighted the need for Western countries to pool their resources and reorganize their digital ecosystems to provide citizens, institutions and businesses with a new level of protection from the threat of technologically-assisted authoritarianism.
“Russian cyber soldiers are attacking different targets, not just military ones. They destabilise the world by acting dynamically on the Internet, which is seen as a place where it is easy to evade responsibility and remain anonymous. The threat from Russian hackers is not over, and we don’t know what will happen next,” Chris Inglis, Head of Cybersecurity of the US President’s Administration, said.
According to General Karol Molenda, director of the National Cyber Security Center, one should not wait for an attack, but change one’s attitude from reactive to active.
“Cooperation, exchange of information and joint development of opportunities are crucial. In cyberspace, too, you have to be prepared for many variants – defensive, reconnaissance and attack,” Karl Molenda says.
Chris Inglis stressed the need for a multi-agency approach to countering cyber threats, incorporating state-of-the-art cybersecurity practices, solutions and systems. He presented the “new social contract” introduced in the US, based on close cooperation in the area of cybersecurity between the public and private sectors.
“The cyber attacks are primarily directed at the private sector. Vigilance must therefore be stepped up, focusing in particular on the training of workers, who are the weakest link in the cyber security system. Governments need to comprehensively manage cybersecurity, but private companies should be given high prerogatives, as they are primarily under attack and need to be able to defend themselves. As a whole country, we will be active in the digital space and take the lead,” Chris Inglis announced.
“Cooperation and exchange of experience are more important than ever. But trust is crucial, without trust everything we do is pointless. Winning is a matter of time and constant effort, and ad hoc success is impossible. We need to share information about the enemy and fight attacks together, not alone,” General Karl Molenda said.