A long line formed today at the entrance to the Cyber Tech Conference in Tel Aviv, which opened today and will continue tomorrow. Visitors to the conference numbered in the thousands, but the length of the line was due, among other things, to the security arrangements for the visit by Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu, who opened the conference with remarks about the importance of the cyber industry. "There is a great opportunity and a great challenge," Netanyahu said at the beginning of his speech. "Technological progress is a blessing, but also a curse, and the biggest curse is that the Internet of Things is making everything vulnerable. Everything is a target for a cyber attack, and when I say everything, I mean everything - from our bank accounts to national security. Even the way we conduct elections in Israel is vulnerable.
"We cannot grow, therefore, unless we have cyber security. It is essential for the defense of both individuals and the nation, which at the same time creates a huge economic opportunity. In the past, I said that I wanted Israel to be one of the world's five major cyber powers, and I think that we have attained this goal. I do not believe, however, that we should settle for being number four or number five.
"When I talk about cyber security, I am referring to the national aspect and the industrial aspect, meaning how to provide security solutions at the national level, and how to provide security solutions to the rest of the world. There is a contradiction between these two goals, because one of the important things for us is Israel's defense secrets. Still, I understand that in this market, as long as we do not cooperate, especially with other countries, there will be no growth, and I am an apostle of growth.
"Such cooperation is difficult, however, because it involves change. It is therefore necessary to convene a meeting between national leaders and high-tech entrepreneurs in order to promote this change.
"A large proportion of the existing cyber technologies began in Israel, and the world recognizes this. The fact that this conference is taking place in Israel and you are attending it is proof of that. I want Israel to become a cyber power, and at the same time a catalyst for worldwide cyber capabilities."
Published by Globes [online], Israel business news - www.globes-online.com - on January 26, 2016
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