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Webinar: Cybersecurity Across Borders

Never before have there been more technologies designed to protect the world’s informational assets, and never before has doing so been more important. That’s why GDIT partnered with The George Washington University to bring together experts in a virtual panel to explore the proliferation of cyber and cyber-related technologies and their impact on policy, diplomacy and nation states themselves.

The discussion was moderated by Michelle Howard, Admiral, U.S. Navy, Retired, and former Shapiro Visiting Professor of International Affairs at The George Washington University. Joining her were panelists:

  • Laura Bate, Senior Director, Task Force Three Lead, U.S. Cyberspace Solarium Commission
  • Dr. Costis Toregas, Director, Cyber Security and Privacy Research Institute, The George Washington University
  • Dr. Matthew McFadden, Senior Director of Cyber and GDIT Cyber Center of Excellence Lead

The panel is part of the Technology and Diplomacy Series hosted by GDIT and GW’s Elliott School of International Affairs, which brings together industry, academia and government to discuss issues impacting national security and the vital diplomatic interests of the United States.

Watch the full webinar and read the recap below.

Cyberspace: A Shared Domain

Howard opened the discussion by recognizing that the global Covid-19 pandemic has highlighted how cyberspace – among many others – is a shared domain. As nation states, we share both the risk and the reward of a strong cybersecurity posture.

On the idea of sharing and collaboration, Toregas voiced support for a stronger platform for international collaboration, conceding that creating that type of platform is hard to do – even for organizations like the UN. He told the group that we need to rethink the platforms we do have and ensure that they’re working as a reflection of today’s world. The world isn’t getting any simpler, he said, and the speed with which that’s happening is cyber speed.

McFadden noted that cybersecurity hinges on two words: collaboration and trust. And we need more of both. It requires nuanced partnerships, he said, as well as healthy relationships between private sector businesses that serve the government and their agency clients through which they can share information and best practices. Greater participation in partnerships is how the world will stay ahead of cyber threats.

Bate pointed out that, when it comes to cybersecurity globally, we also need shared values on how we want the internet to be beyond just secure. We want it to be open, free, and interoperable, as examples. One of the best things we can do, she said, is implement the standards we advise and do so in a meaningful way from a policy perspective.

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