Multi-stakeholder dialogue on Cyber Security, Cyber Crime & Cyber Connection (Cyber3) and their implications for the future of the Internet to be hosted by the Government of Japan in cooperation with the World Economic Forum.

November 7-8, 2015; Bankoku Shinryokan, Okinawa, Japan

We live in a hyper-connected world where truly “no one is an island,” and no person, organization or political entity can fully grasp the wider ramifications of what may appear to be independent actions. One major underlying cause of this new global context is our rapidly increasing reliance on an unseen network of people, devices and systems, creating a web of connections that goes far beyond the Internet we commonly envision.

The challenge posed by threats to cyber (Internet) security include not only the possibility that we may lose an enormously beneficial tool, but quite possibly that we may discover what happens when it is turned against us. This conference will naturally focus on technology, but even more importantly, on policy-making and developing cooperative standards and norms by engaging CEOs, leading academics and senior government officials from around the world. The Internet can no longer be separated into “Track 1” (government-related) or “Track 2” (private sector) dialogs but requires a new “Track 1.5” approach.

Unfortunately, simply sharing “best-practices” and developing defensive checklists are too limited, as these strategies can become obsolete overnight. Cyber threats morph much too quickly – faster than security solutions can adapt. The key to building an effective security response to an increasingly asymmetric threat is not just technical but interpersonal: high-level networking, trust-based relationship building, interactive discussion, open communication and platform building.

Because the Internet transcends national, cultural, linguistic and ethnic boundaries, the only feasible way to address cyber issues is with a cooperative global approach – leveraging a multi-stakeholder model with shared goals. For that reason, the World Economic Forum, as an independent international organization, is ideally suited to lead this discussion.

The Government of Japan has recently made cyber security a top priority, something Chief Cabinet SecretaryYoshihide Suga called, “an extremely crucial issue” as Japan prepares to host the Tokyo 2020 Summer Olympic and Paralympic Games. Furthermore, as one of the most connected nations that is also coping with a rapidly aging society, Japan must increasingly rely on IT, automation and robotics –  making security, convenience, reliability and near-universal interconnection of paramount importance.

To bring much-needed focus to this complex issue, Cyber3 will concentrate on three major themes. It is essential to note that these are not independent issues but are interdependent and closely interconnected.

  1. Cyber security – How organizations of all sizes and types can develop basic cyber hygiene and become more secure; how disparate organizations around the world can learn to cooperate with each other, not only to defend against malicious attacks and bounce back, but also to increase information sharing and turn interconnectedness into an asset rather than a liability.
  2. Cyber crime – From electronic theft to physical attacks, traditional crimes increasingly have their digital equivalents. Global stakeholders need to coordinate, increase awareness and unreservedly exchange both information and insights.
  3. Cyber connection – We must examine the question of how people are connected to the Internet and what that means for the future. This discussion will focus on three sub-topics:
    1. The Digital Divide – More than half of the global population is not connected. In order to create a more peaceful and productive world, this primary issue needs to be addressed by all nations.
    2. Fragmentation – With the Internet spanning fragmented national jurisdictions, there is no legal equivalent to the technical interoperability that made the Internet possible. A flexible framework that allows the coexistence of diverse national laws and norms must be developed in this cross-border online space.
    3. The Internet of Things (IoT) – Originally, the Internet connected computers, and by proxy, people. Now it is growing into a network that links cars and cellphones, home appliances, pacemakers, assembly robots and much more. As the world becomes increasingly connected, what concerns will/should arise? What are the security ramifications of an IoT world, and how should businesses respond?

To discuss the plans for the Cyber3 conference and to answer any questions, a press conference will be held on Thursday, January 22nd, 2015 at 12:15 – 12:45pm in the Press Conference room at the Congress Center – Davos, Switzerland.