2ND ISTANBUL CYBER-SECURITY FORUM FINAL DECLARATION

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2nd Istanbul Cyber-Security Forum whose main theme “New Cyber Economy and Turkish Products” was held by TASAM National Defence and Security Institute, together with the 9th Istanbul Security Conference on 23rd of November, 2023, in Istanbul Kent University Kağıthane Campus, simultaneously as a co-event....

2nd Istanbul Cyber-Security Forum whose main theme “New Cyber Economy and Turkish Products“ was held by TASAM National Defence and Security Institute, together with the 9th Istanbul Security Conference on 23rd of November, 2023, in Istanbul Kent University Kağıthane Campus, simultaneously as a co-event.

Speakers and protocols from various countries and regions, and from different fields and sectors, have participated in the Forum. Diplomatic representatives and delegations from different countries have also taken part. In the Forum, speeches and presentations were made by local/foreign experts, academics and diplomats. Relevant authorities from Türkiye, Asia, Europe, America and Africa were also present at the Forum, and all sessions were followed institutionally.

The following issues of vital importance for the present and the future of Türkiye, the region and the world were discussed at the Forum; “Cyber-Security in Critical Infrastructures, Mobility and Cyber-Security“, “Internet of Things and Cyber-Security“, “New Cyber Economy and Turkish Products“, “Artificial Intelligence, Virtual Reality and Cyber-Security“, “DeepFake and Cyber-Security“, “Cyber Security for Decision Makers“ and “Industrial Cyber-Security“.

As the Forum came to an end, TASAM has set the the following objectives and recommendations for relevant parties, and decided to bring them to the attention of all relevant authorities and the public, with a vision that will enhance current interests and institutions:

  1. With the rapid development of technology, new advancements have taken place. One of the most significant developments among these advancements has occurred in the field of artificial intelligence. The presence of progress in this field has inevitably given rise to various security threats. One of these is the autonomy of artificial intelligence, enabling it to make decisions on its own and the potential for engaging in criminal activities.
     
  2. According to various perspectives, artificial intelligence systems are programmed to perform specific tasks and may lack the intention or consciousness to commit crimes. However, those designing algorithms can be held responsible for the potential misuse of artificial intelligence for malicious purposes and the risk of facilitating illegal activities. When considering the ability of artificial intelligence to commit crimes in the context of autonomy, awareness, and criminal intent, it is possible to acknowledge that artificial intelligence can engage in criminal activities.
     
  3. According to various perspectives, artificial intelligence can be considered as a tool in the commission of crimes, similar to firearms, knives, or forgery tools in today's context. However, it has been emphasized that in the future, AI-producing AIs may play a significant role in crimes committed against living beings or other artificial intelligences and could even create new forms of crimes. Along with the potential negative outcomes resulting from these crimes, the issue of what penalties will be imposed becomes crucial in this process.
     
  4. Another advancement where technology has progressed is in the field of quantum technologies. Quantum technologies are rapidly evolving, especially with unbreakable encryption, and finding applications in both military and civilian domains. Technologies like quantum radars have the potential to overcome existing threats in information security and transmission, as they offer high possibilities for surpassing current challenges.
     
  5. With the first revolution of quantum mechanics, it was predicted that, along with technologies encompassing superposition, entanglement, and physical elements, encryption could be easily broken. In the second revolution, theoretical concepts began to materialize. Quantum technology is expected to facilitate the use of sensitive nano sensors in urban warfare, aiding in mine detection and the identification of terrorist elements. Quantum technology also provides a means to overcome threats in storing and transmitting information.
     
  6. National public diplomacy is the diplomacy developed by states to protect their interests in foreign policy. National public diplomacy and security strategies need to adapt to the changing security environment, including the rise of cyber insecurity and quantum computers. The emergence of the concept of "Cyber Insecurity" alongside cyber terrorism and data breaches has increased the importance of quantum computers. With these computers, solving complex programs could present a significant breakthrough in the field of security.
     
  7. The first industrial revolution brought about the invention of steam engines, while the second industrial revolution witnessed the discovery of electricity. In the third industrial revolution, electronic computers and technologies became integrated into human life, and finally, with the fourth industrial revolution, Industry 4.0 and artificial intelligence technologies entered our lives. The superior processing capacity of quantum computers is particularly utilized to enhance the power of big data analysis. This enables the emergence of intelligent web search engines that not only understand searched keywords but also comprehend constructed sentences. The fundamental characteristic of quantum computers is their ability to rapidly perform numerous operations simultaneously. Unlike traditional computers, quantum computers have the capability to swiftly decrypt codes. This potential raise concerns as quantum computers could potentially break through the security systems of various entities, including government institutions and private sector organizations.
     
  8. States should formulate strategies aligned with the new era of insecurity introduced by quantum computers and adapt their national public diplomacy in tandem with technological advancements. Security strategies have evolved over time, particularly with the emergence of the concept of cyber insecurity, where threats like cyber terrorism and data breaches take center stage.
     
  9. Nanotechnology enabling the alteration of animal genetics to transform them into different forms raises concerns about the potential use of these modified animals in biological warfare. Precautions should be taken to address interventions involving animals such as octopuses, dogs, ticks, which could be perceived as threats within the context of biological warfare, involving interventions and disease dissemination. Projects aiming to revive colonies of ancient animals by copying their genomes also exist. There is a potential risk of utilizing these animals as weapons by implanting chips into their brains.
     
  10. Moreover, transferring genes between different organisms allows for the creation of new types of living beings. The use of these modified organisms as weapons poses a significant risk. Biological warfare can lead to greater damages and mass casualties. Plans such as the Great Reset could potentially be implemented using technologies developed in this field.
     
  11. Wars can be conducted using animals like locusts through developed technologies, and the outcomes of such conflicts can severely impact economies. Examples of this have been observed in Somalia and India.
     
  12. In Turkey, there are claims of using animals like ticks to spread Crimean-Congo hemorrhagic fever. Additionally, the presence of sharks in the Sea of Marmara strengthens allegations of small-scale studies being conducted with a different concept.
     
  13. Firewall systems play a crucial role in protecting critical infrastructures and, simultaneously, they maintain control over access by providing network segmentation. According to Gartner reports, 99% of firewall breaches stem from configuration errors, and a significant portion of known attacks result from the same errors. Therefore, regular review of firewall rules is vital. However, digitization presents challenges among cybersecurity experts, such as inadequacy and an increasing number of rules, impacting the time of security teams. In this context, companies like Opinnate technology have developed solutions that meet the rule analysis and reporting needs of firewall systems, helping security teams manage their time more effectively through the power of automation. It is essential to update and enhance firewall technologies for improved security. The development of such technologies also has the potential to increase employment needs and open doors for national companies in the global arena.
     
  14. With the rapid advancement of technology, many technology companies have begun offering various services. KOBIL, a leading name among these technology companies, is a global technology firm aiming to provide digital identity solutions to its customers as a security-focused entity, adapting to constantly changing digital needs. The continuous evolution of requirements, the need for centralized management of mobile experiences, and the platforms required for the emergence of new business models play a significant role in a dynamic digital environment. The necessity of converging on a common ground is crucial to establish a trustworthy ecosystem among producers, intermediaries, and customers.
     
  15. Digitalization brings with it not only the advantages offered by mobile applications but also security concerns. Various studies published by international research firms suggest that in the coming years, around 50% of companies may experience data breaches, and this situation is expected to be one of the main reasons for changing attack methods in the process of digitalization. Market pressure can lead to the emergence of security vulnerabilities. For example, a study conducted in 2021 predicted that the e-commerce sector would be subject to new regulations up to 90% by the year 2025. These regulations are expected to extend to different sectors as well.
     
  16. One of the emerging developments considered as the future of the internet is the Metaverse, or its Turkish equivalent, the virtual/fictional universe. Metaverse is described as a three-dimensional virtual universe where companies engage in trade using virtual currencies with real-world value. It is anticipated that large-scale technology countries like China will expand the market created by the use of Metaverse in the coming years. In Turkey, however, there is currently no official Metaverse policy, but the country needs to take steps towards establishing national Metaverse platforms and content creation.
     
  17. One of the most distinct areas reached by technology has been examined under the title of "Post-Human New Racial Creations and Nations." NBIC (nano-technology, biotechnology, information technology, cognitive technology) technologies represent a combination used in the creation of new human species with enhanced physical and mental abilities.
     
  18. "Eugenics is a controversial scientific movement aimed at genetically controlling and improving the human race by eliminating unhealthy fetuses. This movement includes practices such as sterilization of the blind, deaf, and schizophrenic individuals, with examples of eugenic sterilizations in the United States up until 1960. Additionally, during Hitler's era in Germany, extreme and unethical forms of eugenics were represented by projects to create an Aryan race and human farms. In China, projects to create superior humans serve as a modern example of eugenics. Such interventions can potentially harm evolutionary development, promote racism, and lead to serious ethical issues in society. The concept gained worldwide attention with the publication of the 2002 report titled "Converging Technologies for Improving Human Performance, Nanotechnology, Biotechnology, Information Technology, and Cognitive Science" by the American National Science Center. Claims have emerged that these studies, along with technological elements, are leading to the creation of new human experiments.".
     
  19. Advancements in technology can also lead to misuse and negative consequences. Cybercrimes, encompassing various illicit activities in the realm of technology, are often addressed through punitive measures rather than preventive ones in criminal law. It is recommended that the ethical dimensions of this situation be discussed within the ethical framework.
     
  20. With the rise of cyber-attacks, technologies in the field of cyber defense have become closely intertwined with this domain, forming a mutually dependent structure. Artificial intelligence and machine learning are increasingly entering the field of cybersecurity. In Turkey, various institutions offer training programs on this subject. One such program is the Cyber Homeland Program, which is conducted by development agencies with support from several government and private institutions, under the auspices of the Ministry of Industry and Technology. Selected students in this program are provided with internship and employment opportunities after completing a specific training process.
     
  21. The impact of artificial intelligence systems in the military domain is increasing alongside global competition and technological advancements. The use of autonomous weapon systems and robotics in the defense industry has drawn attention to this field. However, the potential misuse of this technology necessitates the control of the trade of autonomous weapons. Regions such as Syria and Gaza are prone to the occurrence of such situations. Taking the example of artificial intelligence-based attacks on pipelines by Ukraine, Turkey has recognized the importance of becoming a significant force in this field to defend against threats, control trade, and safeguard critical infrastructure.

23 November 2023, Istanbul
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