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Safe and stable internet development impossible without global IT cooperation

On April 27-28, the 19th Ensuring Trust and Security While Using ICT conference (http://sec21.rans.ru/index.php/prog) took place. It is annually held by the Russian Association of Networks and Services (RANS) with support from the Coordination Center for TLD .RU/.РФ.

As per tradition, conference participants got a chance to meet with industry leaders and organizations that work to ensure trust and security when using ICT. They learned about the strategy to improve the normative and legal base and received updates on the projects in this sphere that are already underway or are being planned.

At the plenary sessions featuring industry officials, the theme of building the digital economy based on safety and trust was discussed, as well as measures to ensure Russia’s technological sovereignty and priority areas of amending the normative legal and technical base for the development of the ICT infrastructure and ensuring its trust and security in the interest of protecting people’s constitutional rights, as well as increasing the effectiveness of business activities and ensuring national security. In the context of the constant backlog of regulations because of the development of technology, the tasks of public-state partnership and interaction within international and national standardization of ICT and security technologies become extremely important.

The Coordination Center for TLD .RU/.РФ held the section, Global Cooperation in IT, where the role, significance and place of global cooperation in the international IT industry were discussed. The section was moderated by Director of the Coordination Center Andrey Vorobyev who described the goals and tasks of global cooperation and the national registry’s experience in cooperation with international organizations such as ITU and ICANN.

“Sustainable development, security, ensuring rights and freedoms on the global network are simply not possible without global cooperation. For example, there is no alternative to global cooperation in ITU activities to develop standards used to create the infrastructure for providing telecommunications services all over the world: this work involves engineering experts from various countries. Some participation of international experts is necessary for the Internet Corporation for Assigned Names and Numbers (ICANN), where representatives of many countries, including Russian experts, work together,” Andrey Vorobyev said.

Director of the Global IT Cooperation Competence Center Vadim Glushchenko noted the importance of production cooperation as one of the most important factors of global economic development.

“The state recognizes the importance of Russia's participation in global IT cooperation, which is reflected in many Russian national projects. In addition, several Russian experts’ point of view that international inter-firm IT cooperation in the form of strategic alliances could contribute to increasing the country's international competitiveness, something that deserves attention. The potential for developing such cooperation is enhanced by Russia’s participation in regional integration associations (such as the EAEU, BRICS, and the SCO). In particular, the development of integration in Eurasia helps to use the experience of creating and developing international strategic alliances,” Vadim Glushchenko said.

The speaker listed possible ways of promoting Russia in the global IT cooperation system. For example, he suggested establishing an institute of “digital attaches” at Russian foreign institutions who would promote Russian products on foreign markets and help to sign dealer and distributor contracts. Vadim Glushchenko also stressed the importance of stepping up Russian experts’ involvement in developing international IT standards at various platforms and forming a system of ensuring international cybersecurity under the auspices of the UN and talked about what the Global IT Cooperation Competence Center was doing in this area.

Natalia Babekina, Deputy Director of the International Cooperation Department of the Russian Ministry of Digital Development, Communications and Mass Media, talked about “glocalization” and why it should replace globalization.

“Leaders in many countries say openly that the world is no longer unipolar, so the principles of globalization must be replaced by glocalization as the main guarantee of multi-polarity. The principle of glocalization is expressed in the strengthening of local peculiarities of countries, peoples, and their social systems. Rules, values, and standards developed by one country should not be imposed on other countries under the pretext of an absolute good,” said Natalia Babekina.

The speaker noted that the state always tries to consider the opinion of business, science, and civil society and is always open to a full dialogue. “In the end, we have the same goal: to provide our citizens with high-quality, diverse and safe communication services,” Babekina concluded.

Natalia Babekina also talked about promoting the concept of the safe functioning and development of the internet on international platforms. A proposal to develop a framework agreement with the terms and rules of behavior on the network that is suitable for all countries, as well as a resolution on protecting users’ rights in cyberspace could become a tool for promoting this security.

The issue of internet governance and related discussions at international platforms was also touched on.

“In addition to the International Telecommunications Union, where there is a possibility, no matter how limited, to discuss internet governance, we would consider it useful to use the new UN Open-Ended Working Group (OEWG) created for five years (2021-2025) under UN General Assembly Resolution No. 75/240 of December 31, 2020. If we manage to include internet governance in the OEWG mandate at the upcoming organizational session on June 1-2, 2021, favorable conditions will be created for a multilateral dialogue on all the elements of internet governance involving representatives from the interested parties,” the speaker noted.

The participants in the roundtable discussion and listeners held an interesting discussion including ideas on further promotion of global IT cooperation, encouragement of Russian experts’ work at international platforms and promotion of the concept of safe functioning and development of the internet.

“The discussion held during the session on global IT cooperation raised several very important issues, such as the fact that cooperation is important at all levels: not only globally but also regionally and nationally. The work to further introduce the principles of Universal Acceptance can serve as a good example here. For example, there is an initiative group in Eastern Europe and Central Asia comprised of representatives from Russia, Ukraine, Belarus, Armenia, Georgia, Serbia and several other countries. Their strong interest and administrative flexibility make it possible for them to achieve significant results while also ensuring the region’s important place in one of the most important areas of internet development: ensuring a user-friendly internet experience in national languages,” said Mikhail Anisimov, Representative of ICANN in Eastern Europe and Central Asia, commenting on the discussion.

The Coordination Center had an information stand at the conference as well as a mobile video studio for video shooting for the center’s 20th anniversary. The center received greetings and a vision on internet development from RANS President Arkady Kremer, Chair of the RANS Executive Committee Alexander Ivanyuk, VimpelCom GR Director Sergey Malyanov, Citadel Vice President Boris Miroshnikov, Acting Director of the Cybersecurity Department of the Ministry of Digital Development, Communications and Mass Media Dmitry Reutsky, and many other people at the conference. Anyone interested will be able to watch the video from the RANS conference on the Coordination Center’s YouTube channel and at 20cctld.ru.

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