British Foreign Minister launches cyber initiative
(Vatican Radio) Britain has launched a multimillion-dollar global initiative to help
fight organized criminals and terrorists using the Internet. Speaking at the international
'Budapest Conference on Cyberspace', British Foreign Minister William Hague said his
nation is developing a new "Center for global cybersecurity capacity building" on
He said Britain will also invest over $3.2 million annually
to offer countries "independent advise on how to improve cyberspace security and promote
good governance online".
Hague explained the Center comes amid concerns about
cyberspace attacks in Britain against vital companies such as banks and government
institutions, including recently around the Olympic Games in London.
should have no refuge online, just as they should not have a sanctuary off-line,"
the top British diplomat told the gathering of government and other delegates at the
sophisticated Millenáris Park, or 'Millenium Park', complex in Budapest.
government hopes more countries will approve the Budapest Convention on Cybercrime,
which was so far signed or ratified by nearly 50 countries since its inception in
"Today it is possible for someone to launch an attack at a relatively
low cost from a simple computer disrupting the operation of an entire state," said
Hungarian Prime Minister Viktor Orbán.
Hague warned however that a crackdown
on illicit Internet activities should not be used as an excuse to limit freedom of
expression, even in some established democracies.
The minister did not mention
Hungary, though the country was criticized over legislation that opponents say limits
press freedom of online and traditional media.
He also criticized countries
banning human rights websites and even video-sharing site Youtube, after an anti-Islam
film was posted there. Though Hague disagrees with the film, he condemned the violent
protests against it.
The conference around the theme 'With Trust and Security
for Freedom and Prosperity' will end Friday, after talks on how to improve protection
of children on the Internet.
Hungary's October 3-5 event is the first follow-up
gathering to the 2011 London Conference on Cyberspace; a similar gathering will be
held in October, 2013, in South Korea, one of the world's most Internet-savvy nations.
Korea's Foreign Affairs and Trade Minister, Kim Sung-Han, said while his Asian nation
develops initiatives to make the online community more secure, it was also important
to tackle negative developments such as the "growing problem of Internet addiction
The gathering in Budapest is attended by nearly 600 representatives
from government, the private sector, civil society and the scientific community, as
well as around 100 international journalists, according to organizers. Listen to this
report by Stefan Bos