Cyberspace has no borders. Cybersecurity measures are therefore more effective when implemented jointly by several organisations or a number of countries. To combat the growing risks linked to increased digitisation and interconnectedness, geopolitical importance of cybersecurity, cooperation among like-minded countries is indispensable. The Cyber Security Week was first launched in 2018 by Japan in collaboration with the US with the aims of enhancing cybersecurity capacity within the Indo-Pacific region and reinforcing collaboration with respective countries. The EU officially joined this annual ICS cybersecurity exercise from 2021.
The Industrial Control Systems (ICS) Cybersecurity Week hosted participants from the Indo-Pacific region, information and operational cybersecurity experts from critical infrastructure operators, cybersecurity experts from national Computer Security Incident Response Team (CSIRTs), and policy experts from relevant ministries and authorities.
The one-week program provided participants with unique and valuable opportunities, such as hands-on training featuring AI, hacked robotic arms and a simulated tampering with a water-level regulation system in an industrial plant, as well as cybersecurity-related seminars taught by experts from Japan, the US and the EU on four topics: awareness of issues and initiatives by government officials in each region; standardisation; incident response; and supply chain risk management. Through this event, participants were able to acquire knowledge, enhance their knowledge on international cybersecurity policies and tangibly improve their cybersecurity capabilities.
The program also contributed to establishing a common understanding on ICS cybersecurity and strengthening relationships between the Indo-Pacific region and the EU, Japan and the US, which will become a ground for further international cooperation in jointly addressing growing cybersecurity threats.
This ICS Cybersecurity Week was organised by the European Commission’s Directorate-General for Communications, Networks, Content and Technology (DG CONNECT), together with the Japanese Ministry of Economy, Trade and Industry (METI) and the Industrial Cyber Security Center of Excellence (ICSCoE) under the Information-technology Promotion Agency, Japan (IPA), and the government of the United States (Department of Homeland Security/ Cybersecurity and Infrastructure Security Agency and Department of State).