Infodemic: A Threat to Cyberpeace

The outbreak of COVID-19 has not only caused a global pandemic, but it has also provoked the spread of what seems to be an unstoppable #Infodemic, an epidemic spread of online dis-/misinformation facilitating cyberattacks.

For weeks, cyberattacks have been on the rise, exploiting the social distancing measure that has forced millions of people to stay in their homes, working and studying remotely, or surfing online to fill their time away from work. The frustration and anxiety of these times have made people more vulnerable targets. Malicious actors have always crafted their attacks to exploit tragedies or natural disasters, from the Charlie Hebdo attack to previous viral epidemics, such as, the Zika virus epidemic

In this context, the CyberPeace Institute is organizing a series of CyberPeace Labs called Infodemic: A Threat to Cyberpeace. This series aims to gather experts from academia, the private sector, international organizations, civil society and government bodies to discuss how malicious actors are exploiting the Infodemic for launching cyberattack campaigns against vulnerable populations. 

By investigating the topic from different angles and engaging with various communities, we will deliver a set of best practices and actionable recommendations that are designed to improve resilience against cyberattacks and online peace. Some of these recommendations can already be found on our Twitter feed.

The first CyberPeace Lab will be live streamed on Monday, the 23rd of March at 14:30 (CET). It will set the scene by discussing the nexus between dis-/misinformation and cyberattacks, both from state and non-state actors. 

Future CyberPeace Labs will touch upon:

  • The capacity for the public to act upon best practices for cyber-hygiene;
  • Spontaneous initiatives of “Cyber volunteers” providing free cyber-resilience solutions or investigation into attacks;
  • How to leverage from systems and platforms gathering public testimony of attacks;
  • The ecosystem of norms and how to close the accountability gap. 

 

More information on the CyberPeace Lab can be found on our event page or under [email protected].


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