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Cybersecurity risks that can result from Balkanisation in cyberspace

Held annually, this year’s Kaspersky cybersecurity weekend will see key cybersecurity issues presented by the company’s top researchers and executives to an audience of journalists from 11 countries across the region. 

The four-day event, with the theme of “Balkanisation: Security Should Not Be in Isolation” will highlight the possible perils of de-globalisation of the internet, alongside an overview of cyber threats involving countries in Asia. 

Kaspersky Lab APAC MD Stephan Neumeier says, “Echoing the warning of our CEO, Eugene Kaspersky, we can clearly see that the utopia of a borderless digital global village is coming to an end. 

“With different countries building their local web fences, the initially free internet is turning into divided and independent patches of online states, which may benefit individual countries to some extent, but will surely be an ace card for criminals aiming to unleash worldwide cyber threats.”

To provide comprehensive insights into the current state of cybersecurity in APAC, three elite cybersecurity experts from Kaspersky Lab's Global Research and Analysis Team (GReAT) will put the spotlight on the most important online attacks monitored in the region.

Top billing at this year’s conference goes to Kaspersky Lab's Director of GReAT in APAC, Vitaly Kamluk, who will demystify the future of the internet based on his 13 years’ experience in analyzing malware and the current laws and trends that transform the cybersecurity landscape around the world.

“The volume of new malware we detect daily has been increasing year-on-year in number, in sophistication, and in reach. The future of the internet is fragile and, as nations scramble to beef up their defences, we’re giving birth to Balkanisation. However, fragmentation is not the armour we need to face the menace of the internet of tomorrow. Remember, a divided world is easier to conquer. We need cooperation, collaboration, and mutual trust to effectively thwart these cyber criminals who do acknowledge neither geopolitics nor borders,” warned Kamluk.

Kaspersky Lab founder and CEO, Eugene Kaspersky noted in an article how countries like Brazil and Germany are considering or may have already kicked off their independent sectors of the internet which involve building parallel networks, isolated from the internet, for highly confidential communication exchanges.

Aside from this, several countries are also crafting policies requiring global tech giants like Google and Facebook to shift their data centres to local locations to curb foreign spying and overseas data intrusions.

Kaspersky has emphasized that Balkanisation and the advent of protectionism being displayed by nations around the world will benefit no one but the cybercriminals.

In addition to the important debate on the future of the internet, Kaspersky Lab’s Korea-based senior security researcher, Seongsu Park, will tackle the sophisticated and infamous online adversary of APAC countries: the Lazarus group. Park will zero in on the operations of this notorious, Korean-speaking advanced persistent threat (APT) which has launched fake supply chain attacks in delivering malware to Windows and even MacOS devices.

Suguru Ishimaru, a security researcher in Kaspersky Lab’s GReAT, will share the methods used to analyse Android malware and will reveal the recent activities of the mobile malware dubbed as Roaming Mantis. This money-motivated attacker was able to successfully infect Android smartphones in South Korea, Bangladesh, and Japan through DNS hijacking earlier this year.

To highlight Kaspersky Lab’s latest action towards trustworthiness and honesty in the cyber security industry, Anton Shingarev, Vice President of Public Affairs and Head of the CEO office at Kaspersky Lab will detail the company’s Global Transparency Initiative during the summit.

Alongside the company’s top cybersecurity researchers, Kaspersky Lab executives Neumeier and Alejandro Arango, Global Director for Corporate Communication, will also be gracing the event.