The fourth meeting of the National Cybersecurity Cluster took place in Kyiv
On May 27, 2021, as part of continued cooperation between the National Coordination Center for Cybersecurity at the National Security and Defense Council of Ukraine and the U.S. Civilian Research and Development Foundation (CRDF Global) (supported by the U.S. Department of State), the second meeting of the National Cybersecurity Cluster was held. The meeting covered issues of critical infrastructure protection and its stability, as well as problems in this sphere and ways to solve them.
Opening the meeting of the Cluster, Deputy Secretary of the National Security and Defense Council of Ukraine Serhiy Demedyuk stressed that this project is a platform where leading cybersecurity experts “can directly exchange views, suggestions, interesting ideas”.
Mr. Demedyuk noted that critical infrastructure protection is extremely important for the livelihood of the state and every citizen and said that while discussing this issue within the Cluster it is possible to develop ways to continuously ensure “security of these objects - from nuclear energy to small financial companies that can be classified as critical infrastructure”.
Representative of the U.S. Embassy in Ukraine Adam Marlowe noted that “the United States continues to be a steadfast partner of Ukraine in the area of cybersecurity”. According to him, last year the U.S. provided assistance to our state for in the amount of nearly 700 million dollars, and is ready to continue dialogue and cooperation with Ukraine, in particular, in the protection of critical infrastructure, which “has become a key issue in the realm of cybersecurity”.
Deputy Head of the Cybersecurity Program at CRDF Global Mykhailo Verych said that 33 real-time and 163 online cybersecurity professionals are participating in the fourth meeting of the National Cybersecurity Cluster, and this event is one of the most numerous within the framework of cooperation between CRDF Global and the NCCC.
Deputy Head of the Information Security and Cybersecurity Service of the NSDC Staff Volodymyr Zverev dedicated his speech to public-private partnerships with critical infrastructure entities in the area of their cyberdefense.
According to him, the Cybersecurity Strategy of Ukraine for 2021-2025, adopted at the NSDC meeting on May 14, 2021, provides for a significant strengthening of cooperation with the private sector and developing public-private partnership, with the NCCC playing a key role here.
“Ukraine will introduce a service model of state participation in cybersecurity measures, where the state will be perceived not as a source of requirements, but as a partner in building the national cybersecurity system”, - he said adding that the most effective model of cybersecurity relations is “a trust-based mode”.
Head of the Service for Critical Infrastructure Security of the NSDC Staff Iryna Tymoshenko stressed the importance of considering and approving the draft law on critical infrastructure protection registered with the parliament. According to her, this document is strategically important for building a system of protection and security of critical infrastructure objects.
Ms. Tymoshenko presented a draft concept for the development of a system for training specialists in protecting critical infrastructure, including its cyberdefense and cybersecurity, noting that understanding the needs of key stakeholders is a priority for developing relevant training programs in Ukraine.
The concept aims to create a system of training, retraining, and advanced training of critical infrastructure protection specialists, including educational activities, and informing the population to meet the country’s needs for specialists, improving awareness of all segments of the population and its readiness to meet security challenges.
The participants of the meeting discussed the organizational and legal principles of ensuring the security and sustainability of critical infrastructure of Ukraine, international assistance in the formation of the domestic system of critical infrastructure protection, features of the classification of critical infrastructure of Ukraine. Draft laws on critical infrastructure protection were also analyzed.
In addition, foreign experts presented the world’s best practices for training specialists in critical infrastructure protection. CRDF Global experts presented an online course “Fundamentals of cybersecurity for government officials”.
Representatives of the main subjects of cybersecurity in Ukraine, MPs of Ukraine, representatives of the U.S. Embassy, European Commission, OSCE, Next Peak, Sovereign Ventures, CyberNB, representatives of the international academic community participated in the meeting.