The Chief Executive Officer of the Ministry of Communications and Information Technology (M.C.I.T.), Leali’ie’e Tuaimalo Ah Sam, has been elected the Chairman Elect for the Pacific Cyber Security Operational Network’s (PaCSON) Executive Committee.
The Executive Committee exists to guide the goals and objectives of the network.
New Zealand has been elected the inaugural Chair this year with Tonga as Deputy Chair.
The inaugural PaCSON meeting took place in Brisbane from the 29 April – 2 May 2018, with over 20 participants from 14 countries: Australia, the Cook Islands, Fiji, Kiribati, the Marshall Islands, New Zealand, Niue, Palau, Papua New Guinea, the Solomon Islands, Tokelau, Tonga, Tuvalu, Vanuatu and Samoa.
Australia’s Ambassador for Cyber Affairs, Dr. Tobias Feakin, launched the event putting emphasis on how this initiative is timely for the region with the rapid increase of internet connectivity across the Pacific. He further stated that PaCSON is a vehicle that everyone can use for closer sharing of cyber security threat information, tools, techniques and ideas between nations.
During the summit, members participated in a cyber security information exchange, an advanced persistent threat incident response discussion exercise, a cyber security awareness-raising workshop and an in-depth session with the Pacific region’s newest computer emergency response teams from: Papua New Guinea, Tonga and New Zealand.
The PaCSON initiative is funded by the Government of Australia through DFAT’s Cyber Cooperation Program (CCP) and was announced as a flagship initiative by Australia’s Foreign Minister, Julie Bishop at the launch of the International Cyber Engagement Strategy in October 2017.
It is a $15 million investment to assist countries in the Indo-Pacific to develop their institutional capacity across a full breadth of cyber issues, including addressing cyber security threats and combatting cybercrime.
PaCSON aligns to the Australian Government’s priority to create a strong and resilient cyber security posture for Australia, the Indo-Pacific and the global community.
PaCSON was established in April 2018, as a network of government-designated cyber security incident response officials from across the Pacific.