Tallinn University of Technology

On December 7, the 6th Interdisciplinary Cyber Research Conference (ICR2020) was held in TalTech. The topics of the conference included security culture, cyberwars, cyber security technologies and the human aspects of safe hardware and cyber security.

According to the founder and organiser of the conference, Anna-Maria Osula, the senior researcher of TalTech’s Centre for Cyber Security and Digital Forensics and the advisor of the technology company Guardtime, cyber security is not merely an engineering speciality, as it also encompasses the aspects of law, politics, economics and social sciences.

“The recent cyber-attacks against Estonian authorities and the private sector have proven that our data and computer systems need constant protection. Development and learning in this area are essential,” said Osula. “The speakers of the conference included excellent experts from different fields related to cyber security. In addition to keynote speakers, there were sessions where young researchers could introduce their work,” Osula noted.

One of the keynote speakers of the conference was Dr. Joe Burton from the University of Waikato in New Zealand, who is known for his interdisciplinary approach to cyber security. His presentation Security Cultures and Cyber Warfare was about the connections between culture and cyber security. He also discussed on the connections of hacker and military culture with corporate cyber culture and brought out how the ideas, behaviour patterns and security practices connected to these topics have influenced cyber security on the international level.

According to Burton, cyber security has become a critical security concern all over the world and the conference provided an invaluable opportunity to come together and discuss about various pressing cyber security challenges. “It was nice to see a wide variety of topics on the agenda, including hacking ethics, security cultures, cybercrime expertise, the human aspects of cyber security and the geopolitical impact of new technologies such as 5G,” noted Burton.

The second keynote speaker was Aarthi Krishna, who spoke about the increasing importance of the role of a chief information security officer (CISO) in today’s technology-rich entrepreneurship environment. The day was concluded with the presentation Trust our Hardware (but not really!) by Samuel Pagliarini, the professor and head of the Centre for Hardware Security Department of Computer Systems of TalTech. “Hardware security is a rapidly evolving but still an underestimated field. W usually hear very rarely about attacks against hardware, as no organization is interested in negative public attention,” explained Pagliarini.

The Cyber ​​Research Conference brought together both young and established researchers from a variety of ICT-related disciplines such as computer science, political and social sciences and law. At the conference, young researchers and master’s and doctoral students presented research related to technology and cyber security, as well as the results of master’s and doctoral theses. This year, the conference could be followed online.

The language of the event was English.