Feb 16-18, 2018: Cybersecurity a continuing preoccupation at Munich Security Conference
GERMANY - The Munich Security Conference (MSC), at the city’s Bayerische Hof, probes issues that include the apparent ease with which foreign entities can influence elections.
The high point is the presentation of the annual Munich Security Report, which sets the tone for the conference. The 2017 report – Post-Truth, Post-West, Post-Order? – is likely to be the foundation for the 2018 proceedings. Election meddling and the dissemination of fake news and its impact on voters have become core issues for the MSC. Experts at a Nov 2017 roundtable examined the shortcomings of the EU legislative agenda and policy debate on cybersecurity, and whether Europe is sufficiently prepared to deal with cyber aggression by third countries.
German broadcaster DW describes the MSC as “a unique global platform for the international elite to discuss security policy,” adding that there is virtually no other forum where so many government representatives – even enemies – and security experts come together in one small space. The guest list in 2017 included 16 heads of state, 15 government leaders, 47 foreign ministers, 30 defense ministers, 59 representatives from international organizations and 65 business leaders.
Some 2,700 police will protect the gathering, which is an obvious draw for terrorists and also an attraction for thousands of anti-capitalist, anti-NATO and other demonstrators. DW notes that nine protest groups were registered for the 2017 event.