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CyberUK 23: NCSC conference centres cyber collaboration

The NCSC’s annual CyberUK conference gets underway in Belfast this week, with collaboration and cooperation high on the agenda

The National Cyber Security Centre’s (NCSC’s) annual CyberUK cyber security conference will get underway in Belfast this week, with the theme of securing an open and resilient digital future and the emphasis firmly on collaboration within the cyber security sector, as well as between governments, industry, academia and financiers in responding effectively to cyber threats.

Among those set to speak at the conference is Austria-born tech entrepreneur Hermann Hauser, who cofounded Acorn Computers – which featured in the first edition of MicroScope in September 1982 – and later ARM Holdings, who will discuss the importance of collaboration in a conversation with NCSC CEO Lindy Cameron to be aired at the conference.

“If you look at all the nations in the world that have a working innovation system, it is all based on the interaction of universities, the government and the finance community. It’s a team sport, I always say that,” Hauser will say. “If technology startups are a team sport, you’ve got to have all these players working together.

“Cyber security is becoming a much more important part of the whole ecosystem. It needs especially close cooperation between government, finance and the tech community.”

The importance of working collectively on cyber security threats was a key theme of last year’s CyberUK event as well. In her opening keynote, Lindy Cameron said that “everyone and every organisation” in the UK had a role to play in this as she reaffirmed the NCSC’s commitment to the government’s “whole-of-society” cyber security strategy.

This year’s event will seek to answer some of the most challenging questions that face the global cyber security community, including how to: secure cyber space so that it remains free, open and democratic; innovate and build the technologies that underpin the values of a free society; predict and mitigate risks and vulnerabilities; grow our collective resilience; nurture and grow cyber security talent; and what our counterparts, a decade down the line, will say to us should we not act now.

Other speakers will include representatives from across the NCSC and the intelligence community, the UK government, public and private sector chief information security officers (CISOs), and representatives of cyber security suppliers and the technology industry.

Also represented will be key figures from the NCSC’s various counterparts around the world, including Jen Easterly, director of the US Cybersecurity and Infrastructure Security Agency (CISA); Sami Khoury, head of the Canadian Centre for Cyber Security; and David Koh, director of the Cyber Security Agency of Singapore.

Hauser will also discuss how innovative technology companies and security startups have a key role to play in growing the UK economy.

“Innovative companies, and in particular deep technology companies, is really where the growth in the economy is going to come from. We’re not going to get it from traditional sectors, it has to come from innovative breakthroughs that come out of universities or big research labs. The ecosystems that now exist, are the bases that allow you to build these companies much faster now than ever before. 

“We’ve just had the most spectacular example of that in ChatGPT, which went from zero to one million users in a week or so,” he will say.

For those unable to travel to Belfast, CyberUK 2023 will be livestreamed on YouTube from the morning of 19 April.

Read more from last year’s CyberUK conference

Read more on Hackers and cybercrime prevention

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