Global leaders unite against IT threats

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Global leaders unite against IT threats

Impact set to launch with a mission to eradicate cyber terrorism

World governments are to join forces with global business leaders to launch an international body aimed at combating organised computer crime.

The International Multilateral Partnership Against Cyber Terrorism (Impact) will be officially launched at the World Cyber Security Summit in Kuala Lumpur next Tuesday – an event that has attracted a range of security experts, industry leaders and government ministers from 40 countries.

The aim of the non-profit body will be to improve the ability of member states to mitigate the risks from the “upper end of cyber threats”, including attacks on critical national infrastructures, said Impact chairman and co-founder Mohd Amin.

“Most security skills are in the private sector and academia, so we designed the organisation to accommodate all these sectors together with member governments,” he explained. “We’re also trying to advise countries to harmonise their laws to make prosecution a more realistic prospect.”

The new body was welcomed by security experts. Natasja Bolton, head of assurance services at security consultancy DNS, argued that it could undertake invaluable work to co-ordinate international law.

“There has to be a common theme throughout the globe around cyber crime,” she said. “The very nature of the internet means that just because one country is proactively fighting against such crime, that does not mean its population is protected from criminals in other countries where the laws are not so tough.”

Impact will work in several areas: facilitating the sharing of best practice among member governments; the cross-fertilisation of ideas between public and private sectors; conducting training and seminars; and developing international benchmarks.
It will also establish a global rapid response centre to enable member states to locate key security experts to assist them in an emergency, and an early warning system for IT threats.

Matthew Tyler, a consultant at security vendor Evolution Security Systems argued that previous EU and US-led attempts to fight e-crime had been largely unsuccessful. "This requires a global lead," he added.

"If [Impact] can get enough government involvement it will be a good thing – a number of organisations look at global threats but there's never been input from a number of governments before."



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