The State of Israel is the natural place to hold this unique event which constitutes the first platform of its kind for the global cyber industry. CyberSpark, the national cyber park, will be established in Be’er Sheva.
(Communicated by the Prime Minister’s Media Adviser)
Two years after the creation of the Israel National Cyber Bureau (INCB), Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu, Be’er Sheva Mayor Rubik Danilovich and Ben-Gurion University President Prof. Rivka Carmi announced the establishment of the national cyber park in Be’er Sheva, to be called Cyber Spark.
The announcement was made this morning (Monday, 27 January 2014), at the opening of Cybertech 2014, the first international cyber conference in Israel, which will be attended by hundreds of international companies.
The facility will be the first of its kind in the world and will include leading cyber industries, cutting-edge academic research in the field, leading security bodies in the field, educational frameworks and human capital focusing on cyber, and national government agencies in the field. All of these create a complete ‘eco-system’ that will include all of the components necessary to create global leadership in the cyber field, in a common physical space which facilitates the pooling of resources, the building of joint technological infrastructures and a synergy of workers, researchers and students.
Among the cyber companies that will be located in the park and are already active partners in the initiative are: EMC, Deutsche Telekom, IBM and JVP. In the framework of the initiative, a high school for the sciences and technology and a cyber studies development center will be opened in the park. Appropriate personnel will be recruited.
IBM Senior Vice President and Group Executive for Software and Systems Steven A. Mills declared in Prime Minister Netanyahu’s presence that IBM and Ben-Gurion University intend to build – in Be’er Sheva – a center for global excellence in the field of security and defense for infrastructures, assets and information. PM Netanyahu called for the evaluation of the possibility of creatingan international cyber research center in Be’er Sheva that would integrate students and expert researchers from around the world.
Prime Minister Netanyahu addressed the conference and then held a special meeting with senior cyber leaders from around the world, including Nation-E, Skycure, MADSEC and ThetaRay. Hundreds of Israeli companies and approximately 20 foreign technology company research and development centers currently operate in Israel.
Prime Minister Netanyahu also held an open discussion with a group of start-up executives who showed him the latest developments in the field. During the meeting, INCB head Dr. Matania announced that the work of the team which is examining the lifting of bureaucratic impediments to the import of cyber technologies would soon be completed. The recommendations will be submitted to the Prime Minister, who ordered the creation of the team in order to encourage cyber industries.
Cybertech 2014 is the first international cyber conference in Israel. Attending the conference will be hundreds of guests from around the world including corporate leaders, cyber defense experts, foreign government officials, international experts, senior investors, and multi-national companies, as well as Israeli start-ups.
The conference is being led by the Israel National Cyber Bureau (INCB) in the Prime Minister’s office, led by Dr. Eviatar Matania, IsraelDefense, and Ben Gurion University of the Negev.
Prime Minister Netanyahu said at the start of the weekly Cabinet meeting (January 26): "I returned this morning from my successful visit to Davos. The purpose of the visit was to detail the advantages of the Israeli hi-tech and cyber defense industries to the leading forces in the world, both countries and new non-state forces, such as international organizations that are as strong as countries, even major powers. The good news is that Israel is very much in demand.
The interest in Israel is very great. The desire to operate here is very great. I estimate that in the coming year we will see the results of both this activity and that of our other actions, i.e. the entry of new companies into Israel, especially in the cyber market, and the expansion of their business activities within Israel, which is already happening.
I met there with the largest companies, including Google, Yahoo, Cisco, Microsoft and various cyber companies in both individual and group meetings.
It is widely understood that in the information age information must be protected, otherwise there will be chaos, the jungle. This is becoming a positive component in all new economic developments. The assessment is that Israel, due to our special circumstances could offer various solutions in this area. It is clear that there is a great opportunity and challenge for us here, first of all to ensure a favorable – and not hostile – business climate for these companies, and secondly, to ensure that our education system will be able to deliver the right tools to our boys and girls so that they will be able to continue to develop with the ability to bring results."
INCB head Dr. Matania said, "In the cyber age, it is absolutely clear that in order to defend against threats, major investment must be made in building significant technological infrastructures. International cooperation based on technology is vital for success and is the main basis behind the conference. The State of Israel is the natural place to hold this unique event which will constitute the first platform of its kind for the global cyber industry and will aid in placing Israel as a cyber power pursuant to the Prime Minister’s remarks in Davos."
Prof. Rivka Carmi, President of Ben Gurion University, the key academic backer of the conference, said: “Our university, with Israel’s first Master’s program and even undergraduate courses in the field, views this conference as a key showcase for the capabilities of Israel’s engineers and computer scientists.”