RSA exec chairman makes a call to end the ‘virtual’ arms race globally

Zafar Anjum

Separation of Offence and Defence

Wizened by this misuse of trust, Coviello said he supported the presidential review group's recommendation to simplify NSA's role. As per the recommendation, NSA should be a foreign intelligence gathering unit whereas the IAD should be spun out and managed by another agency. "NSA should move to defend us, not to offend us," he said.

He also highlighted the lack of digital norms today and called for the creation of a new cryptographic code or standard.

Four principles to save the Internet

A key part of Coviello's speech was the enunciation of the four principles to ensure the future of the Internet that would work only if governments, organizations and individuals cooperated worldwide:

1. Renounce the use of cyber weapons

2. Cooperate in the investigation, apprehension and prosecution of cyber criminals.

3. Ensure economic activity and intellectual property rights

4. Ensure privacy (balance between individual rights and security)

"Many will be skeptical or, worse, cynical that these principles could ever be adopted. Many will think I am naive," he said. "But we can't shrink from the responsibility."

"Adoption of these principles will be difficult," he acknowledged. "Implementation of these principles needs inspired leadership and we need collective action. Inaction will lead to a dangerous world."

"We all inhabit a small planet," he quoted President Kenndy again. "Let us put aside all our differences and make our digital world safer for all."


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