Matt Hancock, Minister for Digital, DCMS addressed the Opening Ceremony for Singapore international Cyber Week He talked about Addressing the Global Cyber Challenge and shared more information about the UK’s new Digital Charter, which was announced in the Queen’s Speech.
Since 2001, he said, tech industries have created 3.5 million new jobs in the UK, more than four times the number that have been replaced, and that London is now recognised as one of the top tech clusters in the world. He described the UK’s ‘full spectrum’ approach to cyber, which includes developing the new skills and expertise we need, supporting the cyber ecosystem, and collaboration with critical infrastructure, the established cyber industry, start-ups, and academia to protect our national security.
Our growing expertise, Hancock suggested, was perhaps best showcased during the 2012 Olympics. The London games were the first ever ‘digital games’ – the first to provide public Wi-Fi access in all Olympic venues, with more content broadcast online than ever before, and much of it accessed via mobile devices – and yet, despite a peak of over 11,000 attacks per second, the network was never once compromised.
Digital technology is a force for good in the world. To keep it that way, the UK is proposing a new framework, a new global consensus, for how we interact, do business and participate online. The aim is to protect and promote freedom online, by ensuring that we promote liberal values that underpin freedom while preventing harm online. The starting point, said Hancock, is that the boundaries and norms that exist off-line also apply in the online world. This approach lies at the heart of a proposed Digital Charter, which seeks to balance freedom and responsibility online while establishing a new framework for how we all conduct our digital business.
Every society is facing the same sorts of challenges. And by the nature of the technology many of the solutions are global too. Local nuances will depend on each country’s culture, but ultimately this balance is needed everywhere. So our hope is, said Hancock,that if we get all this right, other countries will want to join us.