Report Offers Pathways to Bridge Digital Development, Cybersecurity Communities; Melissa Hathaway Quoted

A new report commissioned by the Global Forum on Cyber Expertise Foundation and funded by the World Bank’s Digital Development Partnership has recommended several ways to integrate cybersecurity and digital resilience into the digital development agenda.

One of the recommended pathways to bridge cyber capacity building and digital development communities is updating their “playbook” to the digital era by linking digital resilience and cybersecurity to the digitization strategies, development priorities and economic aspirations of recipient countries, according to the report released on Nov. 30.

Recipient countries should program funds into their national budgets to ensure the sustainability and continuity of digital development projects.

“The development community is spending at least $170B a year to help countries digitally transform their critical infrastructures and services. It is essential that these investments are de-risked and that appropriate resiliency and cybersecurity measures are embedded into the financing operations of these projects,” said Melissa Hathaway, president of consulting firm Hathaway Global Strategies and one of the report’s authors.

“Only then will these countries realize stronger and enduring digital infrastructures.”

Other recommendations outlined in the study are investing in the development of “digital public goods,” building up a cybersecurity skilled local labor force and indigenous capacity and making it a key objective of digital development projects, using development organizations as a channel to increase cyber awareness and grow capacity in middle- and low-income countries and developing greater coordination and coherence between stakeholders to avoid duplication of initiatives.

Hathaway co-wrote the report “Integrating Cyber Capacity into the Digital Development Agenda” with Francesca Spidalieri, a cybersecurity consultant at Hathaway Global Strategies.

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