Global Technology Industry Unites on Approaches to Cyberspace Policy

Danielle Kriz photo

Dateline Seoul:  The Seoul Conference on Cyberspace 2013 is wrapping up today in South Korea.  The expansive, two-day event has brought together a fascinating group of thought leaders from governments, international and regional organizations, non-governmental organizations, academia, and industry.   Hosted by the Government of South Korea, the conference has drawn approximately 1,600 attendees from more than 90 countries. 

The top-line topics discussed all relate to digital security and innovation in the global context: 1) Economic Growth and Development; 2) Social and Cultural Benefits; 3) Cybersecurity; 4) International Security; 5) Cybercrime; and 6) Capacity Building.

Indeed, the tech sector has a critical role in advancing effective cyberspace policies related to the six conference themes.  As context, our sector has contributed to significant economic growth and development since commercialization of the Internet in the late 1990s.  Between 1995 and 2010, global output from IT industries more than doubled to USD $2.8 trillion, accounting for 6 percent of global GDP.   ICT-intensive employment now makes up over 20 percent of total employment in OECD countries.  Bottom line, we make all of the infrastructure that builds our cyberspace so we are deeply invested in most aspects of cyber policy.

At the same time, we need governments to create the right policies to enable us to grow our businesses, innovate, and succeed in our role of cyber capacity-building.  And whether it’s industry’s initiatives, or the initiatives of governments, global cooperation is essential because cyberspace has no national boundaries. 

That’s why ITI worked with four other global technology associations to create an important paper we launched here at the conference in Seoul.  Titled “Moving Forward Together:  Recommended Industry and Government Approaches for the Continued Growth and Security of Cyberspace,” the paper offers our thoughts on approaches industry and government should advance that will support the continued growth and benefits generated by cyberspace in the face of complex and evolving challenges. 

The paper underscores that technology is essential to economic growth and social benefits.   It also recognizes that cybersecurity is inherently global and that building capacity – both on technical and policy matters – is the key to all of us continuing to reap the myriad benefits of technology. 

Joining ITI on the paper are BSA the Software Alliance, DIGITALEUROPE, Japan Electronics and Information Technology Industries Association (JEITA), and Korea Internet Corporations Association (KInternet).

ITI cherishes its relationships with its sister organizations in other capitals.  They are essential for helping to ensure that global industry can coalesce around like-minded, smart policy approaches.  We were, of course, happy to see that the paper we released this week has generated a buzz from a variety of stakeholders here in Seoul.   But more importantly, we are excited the paper can be the beginning of an important and timely dialogue through which global industry can more effectively step up and shape the cyberspace ecosystem of the future. 

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