On 7 March 2019, the Digital Society Institute (DSI) of the University of Twente organized its first of a series of symposia on the subject of digitalization. Entitled ‘Our digital society under attack? Let’s make it secure!’, the event was all about cyber security and was intended for academics and professionals in the cyber security field (technical, social, legal, ethical). The main focus was on the impact on society and on the involvement of external stakeholders.
“We at the University of Twente and the Digital Society Institute take our societal responsibilities very seriously,” explains Dr Andreas Peter, a researcher at the department of Services and Cybersecurity, who is one of the organizers of the symposium, together with Anna Sperotto. “And that is certainly the case for our work in the field of cyber security which, in my view, is one of the most important aspects when it comes to the digitalization of society. We are therefore very pleased to be launching this series of symposia dealing with this subject.”
Peter believes that the title, ‘Our digital society under attack? Let’s make it secure!’ is very much in line with the cyber security mission of the University of Twente, because that mission is aimed at making our digital society secure, where ‘society’ is essential for three reasons:
- Our research into cyber security is leading to scientific insights that are solving practical problems;
- We follow a multidisciplinary approach: technical and social sciences are coming together. That also applies to the University of Twente Master’s degree programmes in the field of cyber security which, as well as computer science, cover business, innovation, entrepreneurship, and legal, economic, and psychological aspects;
- We actively involve external stakeholders in our research.
For Peter, the external focus of the symposium is very important. “We at the Digital Society Institute can only create genuine innovation and make a social impact if we work in partnership with industry, government and civilians.”
The symposium featured speakers from the business sector and the academic world. There was also a panel on the question whether the radical nature of some cyber-attacks ask for more radical security measures. In addition, external stakeholders had the opportunity to share their security problems with DSI scientists, who may be able to develop solutions.
Andreas Peter is satisfied with the outcome of the symposium: “We had around 80 participants with approximately half of them coming from outside the UT. Our speakers delivered high quality talks and we had inspiring discussions with the participants throughout the symposium. I was particularly happy with the different multi-disciplinary aspects that we were able to cover. It became apparent to everyone that we can only solve our society’s cybersecurity problems at hand by collaborating and that there is a clear commitment in doing so. For me, this means: objective achieved! Let’s get started!”
Read more about the Our digital society under attack? Let’s make it secure! symposium and the programme via the link below.