CAIRO: Cybersecurity’s evolution, economic impact, and accessibility are the key pillars of the Global Cybersecurity Forum 2022 to be held in Riyadh on Nov. 9 and 10.
In its third edition, the annual forum is inviting global leaders from different sectors to contribute to the safeguarding of global cyberspace under the theme “Rethinking the Global Cyber Order.”
The event will host over 4,500 attendees from over 110 countries and convene more than 120 speakers to discuss day-to-day cyber issues.
Divided into five subthemes, the GCF will discuss “geo-cyber evolution” to highlight the evolving international cyberspace and explore geopolitical opportunities as its first theme.
The event’s second subtheme will be “disruption frontier”which is set to map out cybersecurity threats and harness future technologies as solutions.
The third subtheme will be “cyber economics” as global leaders will initiate sessions to look at economic-based dynamics that influence behavior in cyberspace.
The third theme will also explore the proactive actions that can be taken from the public and private sectors to innovate in cybersecurity and analyze the psychology of cybercriminals.
Touching on human dimensions and the intersection with the workforce, the fourth theme will feature sessions on how to attract, retain and foster highly skilled professionals through understanding challenges and incentivization of competitions under the title “future of cyber work.”
“No one left behind” is the name of the final subtheme as it seeks to bridge the gap in cybersecurity and ensure that all people and societies can benefit from a cyber-safe world.
The final theme will include sessions to identify key challenges that women face in cybersecurity and address root causes, foster diversity, and ensure children can benefit from cyberspace.
The opening session is called “Rethinking the global cyber order, why?” and will host former foreign secretary of India, Shyam Saran, alongside renowned futurist and professor of theoretical physics at City University of New York, Dr. Michio Kaku, and global cyberpsychology expert, Dr. Mary Aiken.
The first day will also host Saudi Arabia’s Minister of Energy Prince Abdulaziz bin Salman in a session titled “Securing the Energy’s Supply Chain.”
Other prominent speakers include Saudi Aramco CEO Amin Nasser, Managing Director of World Economic Forum Jeremy Jurgens and Saudi Arabia’s Minister of Communications and Information Technology Abdullah Al-Swaha.
Al-Swaha will be discussing how and why nations should accelerate cyber security development in a talk titled “No Nation Left Behind” with South Africa’s Minister of Communications Khumbudzo Ntshavheni and Secretary-General Elect at International Telecommunication Union Doreen-Bogdan Martin.
The first day will also include the discussion “The Future is Female”which aims to highlight the unique benefits of gender diversity in the cybersecurity workforce.
“The Race for Quantum Supremacy’ and ‘Geo-technological Competition and Conflict” along with other sessions are also part of the first day’s agenda.
The second day will kick off with the same discussion “Rethinking the Global Cyber Order, Why?” by Ian Goldin, professor of globalization and development at Oxford University and former vice president and head of policy at World Bank, alongside Andreas Ekstrom, award-winning journalist author and digital futurist.
Day two will hold the session ‘AI for Child Protection’ which will explore the importance of child protection through multi-stakeholder collaborations.
Moreover, the second day will include sessions that revolve around women in cybersecurity, global collaboration, cybercriminal psychology, financial technology, and cyber awareness.
The GCF 2021 saw a huge downturn due to the pandemic as this year’s event is set to lead the way for global cybersecurity.
Last year’s event was a virtual dialogue titled “Cyberspace: What now, What next?” which was called upon to discuss the great urgency for cybersecurity in a digital world.
The event was three hours of online discussions with 27 total speakers including industry leaders, representatives from government, academia, and civil society.
This year’s forum will include solutions design sessions, pavilions, interactive exploration, panel discussions, one-on-one dialogues, case studies, and fireside chats.
Cybersecurity has become a serious issue as the world transitions from offline to online cyber threats and attacks have increased dramatically.
According to Cybersecurity Ventures, the annual global cost of cybercrime is estimated to be $10.5 trillion by 2025 and will grow by 15 percent over the next five years.
In 2021, the average number of cyberattacks and data breaches increased by 15 percent from the previous year, according to Forbes.
Forbes also reported that cybercrime cost US businesses more than $6.9 billion in 2021 and only 43 percent felt that they were financially prepared to face a cyberattack in 2022.
Other statistics state that ransomware attacks happen every 10 seconds and 85 percent of cybersecurity breaches are caused by human error.
The Global Cybersecurity Forum is established by Saudi Arabia’s National Cybersecurity Authority. The NCA serves as the national authority on regulatory and operational functions related to cybersecurity in the Kingdom.
The entity also launched the National Cybersecurity Awareness Campaign in October which aims to prompt the values of preserving national security and raise awareness of cybersecurity.
The campaign included physical and digital events with 12 sessions from national authorities that addressed safety measures to prevent cyberattacks.