December 4, 2019
With around three hundred participants, four exciting plenary speakers, ten well-attended parallel sessions, twelve inspiring demos and a sometimes crackling discussion, the biennial symposium of dcypher was a great success. dcypher director Jan Piet Barthel: "This symposium has convincingly demonstrated how education and research today ensure that we have our cyber security in order for tomorrow." Stan Gielen, President of the Executive Board of NWO, announces in his opening speech which ten projects received funding from the third round of the NWO program Cyber Security - Digital Security & Privacy. The researchers will be working on topics such as encryption, SCADA security, secure data sharing, and the repair of infected Internet-of-Things devices over the next four years.
Then the young participants of the first Dutch Challenge the Cyber and the European Cyber Security Challenge took the stage to talk about their experiences. Chris van 't Hof asked questions generating serious and enthusiastic responses.
Proud of slowness
In a humorous lecture, in which Powerpoint seemed to be hacked at times, Herbert Bos of the VU University Amsterdam showed the audience the danger of hardware vulnerabilities. With healthy self-mockery, he illustrated how the interplay between scientific research and social relevance can sometimes lead to frustrating requests from affected companies. Nevertheless, Bos ended with the proud notion "Our research has meanwhile made your PC slow by up to fifty percent." And a lot more secure, too.
Gabi Dreo Rodosek of the Code Institut Munich gave a passionate plea for European cooperation. "Europe is a champion when it comes to defending social values. And we have excellent research. But we are not the player who develops the defining technological platforms. We need to take major steps in translating scientific research into products and services, and in scaling up our strong SMEs to global players. Because we are increasingly being squeezed between the United States of America and China / South Korea. "Her solution? "We need to unite the current fragmented European cyber security landscape in a strong community. Let's build the European Cyber Airbus together! "
During the various parallel sessions, all possible aspects of cyber security research and education were discussed: from national to European cooperation; from predicting cyber threats to reporting vulnerabilities found; and from hardcore technology to the human factor. After the second round of parallel sessions, all participants met again in the plenary room for the lecture by Richard Clayton of the University of Cambridge, who gave his statement 'I like counting things' by showing some examples of where his counting has resulted in. "We recently have repeated a 2012 study into the costs of cyber crime. In fact, little has changed: we are still investing ten to one hundred times as much in the defense as what cyber crime actually is causing damage. And the criminals still have the idea that they are not being caught. "Clayton also made a passionate plea to share more data in the cyber security investigation. "Much of the data that we use comes from third parties. For this you often have to sign Non Disclosure Agreements, which stand in the way of reproduction of the research.
That can't be true if you want to do good science. I have built up a large data set in recent years, and I like to share that with other scientists. Even data that is so new that I have not even looked at it myself, I am happy to make available. "Clayton advertised himself as a one-stop shop:" Researchers can also store all their own data that they want to share with me. I will take care of all the necessary paperwork."
During the concluding panel discussion between Gabi Dreo Rodosek, Bart Jacobs from Radboud University Nijmegen and Christopher Kruegel from the University of California under the leadership of Willem Jonker of EIT Digital, the digital sovereignty of Europe was central. "Europeans must have the choice to choose European alternatives to American or Chinese technology," said Dreo Rodosek. "This requires that we create an environment that encourages entrepreneurship." "Citizens must be able to make reasonable choices without endangering themselves or their data," Kruegel agreed. "That means that a culture change is needed. In the US, people are proud of the idea that you want to start a startup. In Europe people are more skeptical, and the first question is who will benefit from it. "Jacobs argued against a one-sided focus on economic gain when it comes to cyber security:" If you leave everything to the market, you keep a few large companies about only retaining the technology that fits in their own houses. Technology they don't like, they will bury completely. Europe should not focus solely on monetary gain. The government must defend public and moral values, also in the digital world."
Panel discussion ltr: Willem Jonker, Christopher Kruegel, Gabi Dreo Rodosek and Bart Jacobs
Trust in the future
After the presentation of a publication on the long-term bilateral cyber security research cooperation between the Netherlands and the United States to Jeremy Epstein of the National Science Foundation, Wim Hafkamp of the Ministry of Justice and Security and Christiane Klöditz of NWO, Jan Piet Barthel concluded the symposium with closing words of satisfaction: 'The dcypher logo has no capital letters on purpose. The horizontal line in the logo symbolizes the platform idea, and emphasizes that it is all about the cyber security community, dcypher that's us. This community has matured in recent years and can now independently form large public-private partnerships, of which the INTERSECT program is a glorious example. I am proud of what we have achieved with dcypher, and look forward to the future of this community with great confidence."
From left to right: Jeremy Epstein (NSF), Christiane Klöditz (NWO), Wim Hafkamp (NCSC) and Jan Piet Barthel (dcypher)
"After the event" overview
The dcypher Symposium is co-funded through a MIT Grant for Network activities by TKI HTSM.
This symposium is organised by dcypher in close cooperation with the Dutch Research Council (NWO), the Netherlands Enterprise Agency (RvO), the National Cyber Security Centre (NCSC) and the Taskforce Applied Research (NPRO-SIA). New this edition is that also the Netherlands Organisation for Applied Scientific Research (TNO) contributes and the recently founded Dutch Institute for Vulnerability Disclosure (DIVD).
Text article: Sonja Knols
Photo's: Sjoerd van der Hucht