CyberTech 2017: Special Coverage

For the fourth consecutive year, the CyberTech Conference was a tremendous success, attended by thousands of visitors from around the world, including hundreds of senior executives from the private and public sectors

Photo: Gilad Kavalerchik

Cybertech – the most significant conference and exhibition of cyber technologies outside of the United States – took place this week at the Tel Aviv Convention Center, from January 30 to February 1. The three-day conference & exhibition brought together leading multi-national corporates, SMB's, start-ups, private and corporate investors, venture capital firms, experts, and clients.

Cybertech 2017 provided attendees with a unique and special opportunity to get acquainted with the latest innovations and solutions featured by the international cyber community.

Among the keynote speakers were the Prime Minister of Israel Benjamin Netanyahu; the Governor of the State of Michigan Rick Snyder; Dr. Eviatar Matania, Director General of the Israel National Cyber Directorate; Deputy Prime Minister of Slovakia Peter Pellegrini; Gil Shwed, Founder & CEO of Check Point Software Technologies; Chuck Robbins, CEO of Cisco; Dr. Yossi Vardi, Conference Chairman; and many more.

In his keynote address, Prime Minister Netanyahu said to the participants of CyberTech Tel Aviv that "It is no coincidence that you are here in Israel. This conference has more than 10,000 visitors from five continents. The physical size of Israel has not restricted Israel's power in cyber technology. The secret of our cyber technology industry is the affinity between people. The meeting ground for ideas from different content worlds. Small teams working together. Many of them possess military experience as well. That is a winning combination."

DPM of Slovakia Peter Pellegrini shared his view on the future of autonomous transportation. "According to our estimates, by 2021 an autonomous digital car will be traveling along the streets of European cities and trials on such vehicles are about to begin," he said.

"More than 90% of organizations fail to protect themselves properly against cyber threats," said Gil Shwed, Check Point's CEO, at the opening plenary of CyberTech 2017. The Head of the Israel National Cyber Directorate, Dr. Eviatar Matania, added that Israel is currently one of the world leaders in the development of cybersecurity technologies and strategies.

The panelists of the "National-Level CERT Centers" session discussed the need for establishing regional and international cooperative alliances in the face of growing cyber threats. Most of the world's countries suffer from a serious shortage of manpower in the field of cyber technology – cyber technology, cybersecurity and cyber defense specialists. Worldwide, two million cyber technology specialists are currently in demand.

In his keynote address, Cisco's CEO Chuck Robbins said, "Things are moving faster than anyone realizes. We are currently undergoing the most significant and fastest technological change we have ever experienced and will probably ever experience in our lifetime."

BG (res.) Danny Gold, Head of Defense R&D Directorate at the Israeli MoD reported that the organization he heads is "working on a new cybersecurity plan for Israel", which would position Israel as a global leader in the field of cyber technology.

Jeffrey Berkowitz and Gerson Panitch, Partners at Finnegan LLC., said that "many Israeli companies are currently facing the patent threat. At any given moment there are competitors who are registering patents in order to block you. This is an era of new technologies, and during such an era, companies do their best to secure their technologies using patents."

According to Zuk Avraham, the Founder and Chairman of Zimperium, "the real threat today is right inside our pockets – a 24/7 active microphone and camera, a continuously transmitting and always available device, without adequate protection – the real danger is in our cell phones." Avraham said that his company "will allocate $1.5M to open a new program for researchers, scientists and communication companies that will enrich the knowledge gathered on mobile attacks"

During the CyberTech 2017 Exhibition, hundreds of companies and startups presented their cutting-edge solutions and innovative technologies. Two of Israel's clandestine agencies, Mossad and ISA (Israel Securit Agency) also had booths in the exhibition. Nadav Argaman, Head of the ISA, visited the exhibition and was introduced to the diversified range of companies and organizations participating in the conference.

This year, for the first time in Israel, the ISA booth showcased an "escape bus" – a challenging, state-of-the-art "escape room" fitted into a bus. Creative, out-of-the-box thinking conference attendees responded to the challenge presented by ISA. During the first day of the conference, hundreds of visitors to the ISA pavilion took the escape bus challenge and subsequently stated that "reality actually surpasses fiction."

Another special panel at Cybertech 2017 was a startup competition powered by YL Ventures. APERIO systems won the competition and was recognized as the most innovative cyber security startup. The five finalists included Cybellum, Sepio Systems, Cymulate & Intezer.

Photography: Gilad Kavalerchik

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