GFCE Pacific Hub


At the invitation of the Oceania Cyber Security Centre, the GFCE held its first regional Pacific meeting on cyber capacity building in February 2020 in Melbourne. The meeting discussed the current state of play of cyber capacity building in the region and participants of the meeting called on the community to:

  • improve the design of programs and implementation strategies to the operating environment of the Pacific.
  • increase transparency and coordination among stakeholders when identifying and setting programming objectives, delivery timelines and exact capacity building needs.
  • strengthen commitment from local and international stakeholders for funding, staffing and delivery model.

In response to these recommendations, the GFCE commissioned a scoping assessment for the establishment of a potential GFCE Pacific Hub. This scoping assessment was funded by the New Zealand Ministry of Foreign Affairs and Trade (MFAT) and the UK government.

The Pacific Hub began its operations (virtually) in July 2022 with a Director and Senior Advisor and a Project Associate supporting the Women in International Security and Cyberspace Fellowship (WIC) programme joining in September.

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The mission of the Pacific Hub is to understand the cyber capacity requirements of the region and work in partnership with the Pacific nations and people to raise their cyber capacities, with the hub’s activies in-line with and supported by the GFCE Secretariat.  


The Pacific Hub values and setup are in-line with the GFCE’s, making it an impartial and independent, but pragmatic, action-oriented, and responsive platform that helps empower local Pacific communities and structures so that cyber capacity building efforts become more resourceful in a manner that is Pacific appropriate, Pacific sensitive, and done the Pacific way.


The vision of the GFCE Pacific Hub is to contribute to strong and assertive Pacific cyber communities through cyber capacity building approaches that are more concerted and fit for purpose. The inclusion of Pacific Island governments and local communities as partners in the design of cyber capacity building efforts will drive local, national and regional digital development, innovation and cyber resilience.

The GFCE Pacific Hub focuses on delivering practical advice, expertise and assistance, deeply embedded in local cyber communities of practices, as well as enabling the Hub to provide access to the GFCE’s global network of members and partners to those in the Pacific region. A key deliverable of the Pacific Hub is to build a facts-based understanding of the regional cyber capacity building environment.

In remaining authentic to its mantra of ‘for the Pacific, by the Pacific and in the Pacific’, the Hub will rely on the team’s deep local knowledge, connections and culture of work. When needed, the Hub should be in a position to assist affected countries in triaging issues, identifying risks and mobilizing resources. One of the most important values the regional hub brings to the Pacific cyber community is a platform for networking, trusted connections and the creation of informal communities of practice, in-country and across the region.

Making sure local cyber communities have the skills, confidence and experience to manage their affairs is what cyber resilience in the Pacific will mean, and that includes operational partnerships with peers in places like New Zealand, Australia and Southeast Asia.

Why the GFCE

One important factor for operating in the Pacific cyber community is the ability to be impartial, independent and facilitative. Given its mandate, its membership and the role that the GFCE plays in the coordination of cyber capacity building (CCB) globally, it is well-positioned to be that impartial, enabling and apolitical platform for information, knowledge sharing and coordination that brings together often disparate communities in search of a common platform that makes CCB a priority.

Since its establishment in 2015, GFCE operations and activities have been community-driven in response to the needs and interests expressed by the community. This community has been a driver behind building, and further professionalizing practices CCB, in part through documenting principles and global good practices. Members and partners that desire to invest in strengthening cyber capacities in the Pacific region can augment and reinforce their own activities by using elements of the GFCE network.

The GFCE presents the Pacific community with access to a global and open network of holders of knowledge, resources and capabilities. While there is no expectation for the Pacific community to join the GFCE’s activities directly, given the different time zones and availability, the Pacific Hub can be the conduit for the region.

Throughout the consultations, interviews and updates, the community showed support for a GFCE role in the Pacific and an interest in what it could contribute to in relation to cyber capacity building activities for the region. Equally, major international partners in the region, such as New Zealand, UK, Australia, US, Singapore, France, Korea and Japan are active members of the GFCE alongside the World Bank and UNDP.



A list of past and upcoming events

Pacific Hub Team

Saia Vaipuna Director GFCE Pacific Hub

Director GFCE Pacific Hub Mr. Saia Vaipuna

Saia Vaipuna is the inaugural Director of the GFCE Pacific Hub and is responsible for leading and the establishment of the hub. Prior to working with the GFCE, he was the Director of CERT Tonga (Tonga’s national Computer Emergency Response Team). He served as chair of Tonga’s Cybersafety Working Group as well as other national cyber related committees. He was also elected to the executive committee and chaired the Pacific Cybersecurity Operational Network (PaCSON) on behalf of Tonga

Ms. Susan Garae, Project Associate 

She supports the Women in International Security and Cyberspace Fellowship (WIC) programme and joined in September 2022.

Senior Advisor GFCE Pacific Hub Ms. Cherie Lagakali

Cherie engages extensively with the Pacific technical community and is passionate about online privacy and child safety online. As an Internet Governance enthusiast, Cherie is a member of the global UN IGF MAG (Multistakeholder Advisory Group). Cherie would love to see more Pacific women in ICT take up leadership roles and engaging in global cyber capacity building and internet governance discussions. On those rare occasions when not in meetings online, organising workshops or spending time with her two boys, Cherie loves reading.

News Articles

Contact the Pacific Team!

For any inquiries you may contact the GFCE Pacific Hub Director Mr. Saia Vaipuna at or GFCE Pacific Hub Senior Advisor Ms. Cherie Lagakali at