The defense and development challenges facing nations today go beyond the natural domains of the past when countries had centuries to build up land, sea, and air power. In developing countries specifically, governments benefit from the support of investment and strategic partners that can help incorporate cyber capacity building into the broader pursuit of security and economic progress. The role of cyber in developing countries was the focus of a recent panel discussion hosted by the Israel Ministry of Economy, which included Toka co-founder and president Brig. General (Res.) Yaron Rosen.
During the hour-long conversation, moderated by former U.S. Department of State cyber official Chris Painter, Rosen and the other panelists addressed how cyberspace is increasingly used to threaten critical infrastructures, such as water treatment plants, the electrical grid, and financial institutions. Headline-grabbing incidents like the SolarWinds hack in the United States and ransomware attacks on hospitals and schools worldwide further highlight the growing challenge of securing cyberspace.
To tackle these emerging threats and build the cyber capacity and train the workforces required for the future, Rosen explained that cyberspace must be viewed as a collective whole, where the strength of global security requires all countries to invest in cyber and collaborate on best security practices. One solution Rosen shared during the discussion is the development of a global organization dedicated to cybersecurity, similar to the World Health Organization, to establish norms and deter attacks from happening in the first place.
Although hurdles remain for most nations on the cyber capacity and security checklist, Rosen noted that cyber development is about more than just preventing costly attacks. Citing Israel as an example, Rosen argued there are numerous economic opportunities available for nations that prioritize cyber development, including an influx of innovative startup businesses and careers.
Toka’s Cyber Designer services
Toka is proud to play a role in this work worldwide by supporting national-level cyber capacity-building projects funded by the World Bank and the Inter-American Development Bank or directly with governments. Our unique Cyber Designer services provide government agencies with full-spectrum strategies, customized projects, and technologies needed to keep critical infrastructure, the digital landscape, and government institutions secure and durable while adhering to leading industry-recognized security standards.
Some of our projects include our work in Moldova, Nigeria, Ghana, and Chile. During the panel, Rosen discussed Toka’s assignment in Moldova as one example of how the company helps governments identify existing cybersecurity gaps and secure assets. In Moldova, as government employees worked from home during the COVID-19 pandemic and needed a secure way to run and deliver services remotely, Toka advised on a strategy for the secure management of government information and data on mobile devices.
Cyberspace has become an essential platform to conduct business and share information, but digital trust is not universal, and cyberspace is more at risk than ever. Cyber capacity building must be a core feature for developing countries as they build their national defense and economic strategy.
To learn more about the role of cyber in the development process and Toka’s specific projects and perspective, access the full video discussion below.