Introducing: CAMP (Cybersecurity Alliance for Mutual Progress)

News item | 07-06-2017

The purpose of the Cybersecurity Alliance for Mutual Progress (CAMP) is to achieve sustainable benefits of secure cyber environment and serve as a platform where members take collective actions to keep cyberspace safe. Within this network, members will share best practices and analyze current trends in the field of cybersecurity. CAMP believes this will lead to mutual progress as well as contribute to the general development of global cybersecurity.

Written by: You Jin Moon, Researcher of Korea Internet & Security Agency, also in charge of the CAMP Secretariat.

Inaugural meeting of the Cybersecurity Alliance for Mutual Progress (CAMP),11 July 2016, Seoul, South Korea. Credits: Korea Internet and Security Agency

Towards a safer tomorrow

For a long time, cyberspace has been treated as a purely virtual place, far removed from the physical world. The perception was that cyber-attacks were simply perpetrated by hackers, showing off their skills. Today, people’s perception on cyberspace has significantly changed. Due to advancements in information technology, the boundaries between cyberspace and the physical world are crumbling even further. Simultaneously, the sophistication of cyber-attacks is growing at an alarming pace, and the resulting threats are consequently more serious. Cyber-attacks not only cause socio-economic losses, but are nowadays widely recognized as a threat to national and international security.

Under these circumstances, it is increasingly difficult for a single nation to handle cybersecurity issues on its own. There is a need for stronger and more effective collaboration at the global level, in order to maintain a safe cyberspace. In response to demands from government agencies and public organizations invested in cybersecurity, 37 organizations from 29 different countries gathered together in 2015 to explore the possibility of forming a new global alliance on cybersecurity. The participants agreed to launch a global initiative. The aim was said to build their cybersecurity capacities and capabilities, and to foster global cooperation in responding to cyber threats. The Joint Statement, adopted at this preparatory gathering, was the starting point of the Cybersecurity Alliance for Mutual Progress (CAMP).

Annual meeting. Credits: Korea Internet and Security Agency

The beginning of a global partnership on cybersecurity

CAMP was officially launched on July 11, 2016 in Seoul, Korea with the purpose to achieve sustainable benefits of secure cyber environment and to serve as a platform where members can take collective action to keep cyberspace safe. As of now, CAMP has 49 member organizations from 37 countries – and this number continues to grow. Government agencies and public and non-profit organizations related to cybersecurity are eligible for CAMP membership.

Thanks to the active participation and contribution of its members, in its first year of operation, CAMP improved and stabilized its organizational structure, continuously shared information on cyber threats, and explored the development of joint cybersecurity projects. The Operations Committee and Working Groups hold regular teleconferences, which service to promote the organization’s activities and strengthen member relations. CAMP also publishes a monthly newsletter with updates on members’ activities and cybersecurity trends.

This year will see the start of CAMP Regional Forums, designed to discuss establishing successful policies and strategies on cybersecurity at the domestic and regional level. The forums also intend to intensify cross-border co-operation and discover potential future tasks for CAMP. The first Regional Forum was held on April 19-20 in Accra, Ghana. CAMP member representatives and potential members from the African region had in-depth discussions on the current state of cybersecurity in Africa and shared plans to develop and increase cyber resilience in the region.

Among the most important gatherings for CAMP is the Annual General Meeting (AGM), where all members gather to discuss the direction of operations, exchange experiences and information, and organize activities that advance mutual interests. The second CAMP AGM, carrying the theme of “Cyber Resilience: the Key of Cybersecurity,” will be held on July 5, 2017 in Seoul, Korea, and will further build on the progress made thus far.

Technology Exhibition. Credits: Korea Internet and Security Agency

Building trust for the next generation

As new cyber risks arise and evolve – and new areas of cyber vulnerability emerge – it becomes increasingly harder for countries to manage and respond to cyber threats on their own. Recognizing this reality, CAMP will support close cooperation among its members, with the ultimate goal of forming both a trustworthy and secure cyberspace.

There is a saying that CAMP follows: “Coming together is the beginning. Keeping together is progress. Working together is success.” The hard work and contribution of all CAMP members will leave a lasting legacy in the field of cybersecurity for the benefit of future generations.

This article first appeared in the third issue of the Global Cyber Expertise Magazine – May 2017