The National Cyber Security Centre’s (NCSC’s) flagship annual conference, CyberUK, is heading to the ICC Belfast conference centre in Northern Ireland in April 2023, with the theme of “Securing an open and resilient digital future”.
With both its current and former CEOs hailing from Northern Ireland, the NCSC is gathering its senior leadership in Belfast today (9 September) to meet with business leaders from the region’s growing cyber security community.
Northern Ireland is already home to 4% of the UK’s cyber security workforce despite representing just 2.8% of its total population, and has a strong track record of attracting significant overseas investment in the local cyber sector. Belfast is also home to the world-leading Centre for Secure Information Technologies (CSIT) at Queen’s University.
“As a proud Northern Irish woman, I am delighted to see our flagship CyberUK conference come to Northern Ireland for the first time, recognising its position as a global cyber security hub,” said NCSC chief executive Lindy Cameron.
“Today’s launch of CyberUK 2023 marks an important milestone on the journey to next year’s event, which will examine how we can secure our digital future in the face of the challenges and opportunities posed by technological developments.
“Belfast will be a fitting host for what promises to be a great event and an essential opportunity for the cyber security community to work together towards securing an open and resilient digital future.”
The focus of next year’s event will be on three core “threads”: how a strong cyber ecosystem can help in the delivery of a more resilient society; understanding the threats, risks and vulnerabilities we collectively face; and gaining technological advantage alongside the UK’s friends and allies.
Supported by the Belfast and Northern Ireland Conference Support Scheme, CyberUK 2023 is expected to attract over 2,000 attendees from around the world. More information on the event will be available in due course.
The 2022 conference in Newport, South Wales, marked a return to in-person events for the NCSC following two Covid-hit years. It played host to a wealth of discussions on diverse topics from security innovation and startups, to cloud security, data-sharing, Russia’s war on Ukraine and other nation state threats, as well as the UK government’s “whole-of-society” National Cyber Strategy.
In a speech delivered on the opening day of the conference, GCHQ director Jeremy Fleming said: “For the first time, we have a national strategy that covers the whole of cyber, from defence to cyber operations, and from cyber rules to skills.
“It recognises the role of citizens, businesses large and small, academia, NGOs, local and devolved governments, and it recognises that we must work together to raise cyber resilience. I think it genuinely breaks new ground, and while it inevitably talks to the threat, it makes it very clear that as a country, we must seize the opportunities from technology, confident that cyber remains a force for good.”