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A Roma il Global CEO Summit della UFI, il vertice mondiale dell’industria fieristica

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Dal 5 al 7 febbraio al Palazzo Naiadi di Roma si è tenuto il Global CEO Summit dell’UFI, acronimo della Global Association of the Exhibition Industry, leader mondiale del settore fieristico.

La UFI riunisce la maggior parte degli organizzatori di fiere e di esposizioni, una quota rilevante dei centri espositivi, nonché alcune principali associazioni mondiali; stando alle stime l’associazione ha prodotto un giro d’affari da 275 miliardi di euro, ha creato posti di lavoro per un totale di 3,2 milioni e attira alle proprie esposizioni circa 303 milioni di visitatori l’anno; quest’industria, tramite impatti diretti e indiretti, è così florida da sostenere per l’esattezza 167 miliardi di euro sul PIL mondiale, collocandosi così al 56imo posto tra le economie globali.

Un vero e proprio silent power afferma Pietro Piccinetti all’inizio della conferenza stampa che ha anticipato il summit. Piccinetti, presidente della CEFA, ovvero la Central European Fair Alliance, nonché amministratore unico della Fiera di Roma Srl, a margine dei dati appena elencati ha sottolineato quanto il settore sia un vero e proprio motore di sviluppo per le economie mondiali; è difatti interesse della UFI sviluppare gli interscambi tra i paesi tramite accurate analisi di ogni singolo mercato. L’Italia stessa può essere presa come esempio per la questione; con 39 poli fieristici, 22 milioni di visitatori annui e 200 mila espositori il nostro paese è il quarto al mondo nel settore e da qui, ha sottolineato Piccinetti, passa il 50% dell’export italiano. Proprio grazie all’attività compiuta nell’ambito delle fiere e delle esposizioni le piccole e medie imprese hanno la possibilità di internazionalizzarsi e sviluppare i propri network.

Era presente alla conferenza stampa anche Onorio Rebecchini, presidente del Convention Bureau Roma e Lazio, organismo di maggiore rappresentanza del settore MICE (Meetings, Incentives, Conferences and Exhibitions) nella regione. Sebbene il CBReL sia nato solo nel 2017 il suo lavoro ha già dato un enorme contributo allo sviluppo del settore nella Capitale e nel Lazio, fornendo supporto alle candidature del territorio. I presidenti della CEFA e del CBReL hanno quindi colto l’opportunità di ospitare a Roma il Global CEO Summit di quest’anno, evento di primaria importanza nel settore dell’industria fieristica; il vertice, che ha cadenza annuale, riunisce i 100 decision-makers globali come i più importanti organizzatori, presidenti e CEO delle varie aziende interessate. L’idea di organizzare a Roma il summit del 2020 era stata già paventata l’anno scorso a Londra, durante il Global Summit del 2019; l’evento di quest’anno, a cui si prende parte solo tramite invito, ha ospitato i market-leader di circa 37 paesi.

“Roma è una meta ideale per ospitare questo evento”, ha detto Kai Hattendorf. Il CEO della UFI ha ampiamente elogiato la “stagione rinascimentale” che l’Italia sta vivendo nel settore, trend che conferma il rapporto speciale tra l’associazione e il nostro paese; a riprova di questa relazione bisogna ricordare che il congresso di fondazione della UFI ha avuto luogo a Milano nel 1925 con l’incontro dei principali organizzatori europei. L’economia fieristica è forte, ha proseguito Hattendorf, il 2019 è stato un anno positivo per i ricavi, le sue entrate sono state maggiori rispetto all’economia generale e questo perché il settore stesso non risente della crisi economica, anzi contribuisce a risollevarla per il suo carattere principale, il networking.

L’obiettivo principale infatti non è monopolizzare la leadership ma favorire il multipolarismo globale; della stessa opinione è stata anche Mary Larkin, presidentessa sia della UFI che della Diversified Communications USA, una società multimediale con sede a Portland, nel Maine. Durante la conferenza la Larkin ha posto gli obiettivi dell’associazione per il futuro: lo sviluppo sostenibile, la multi-leadership e il rafforzamento del mercato del settore, con preferenza però ai primi due.

Oltre all’Italia un altro caso virtuoso è quello della Cina, paese che da circa 15 anni sta registrando un trend positivo nel settore fieristico, consolidandosi così come seconda potenza dopo gli Stati Uniti e prima di Germania e Italia. Stando ai dati offerti dal gruppo Research and Markets, uno dei più grandi per le indagini di mercato, l’economia cinese negli ultimi 10 anni è progredita così vertiginosamente da farla divenire al contempo una delle maggiori potenze manifatturiere e consumatrici al mondo; in tale direzione lo sviluppo dell’industria fieristica cinese è strettamente collegata alla sua crescita economica perché capace di collegare le intenzioni dei buyers e dei contractors. Nel 2017 la Cina ha ospitato più di 10,000 esposizioni per un’area comprensiva di circa 120 milioni di metri quadri, ottenendo così dei ricavi diretti e indiretti pari a 52 miliardi di euro.

Sempre con riguardo alla Cina gli ospiti della conferenza hanno voluto spendere alcune parole per la recente emergenza sanitaria del Coronavirus; se Larkin e Hattendorf non si sono detti preoccupati per la situazione Pietro Piccinetti ha criticato l’isteria italiana al riguardo, confermata anche dal crollo dell’80% di visitatori alla Fiera dei Due Mondi a Milano.

New Space Economy European ExpoForum: dal 10 al 12 dicembre i protagonisti mondiali del settore spaziale a Fiera Roma, l’economia delle stelle a 360 gradi

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Un evento proiettato al futuro che guarda oltre l’ecumene puntando alle stelle. Dal 10 al 12 dicembre si terrà la New Space Economy European ExpoForum alla Fiera di Roma, il primo evento dedicato all’economia dello spazio dove l’Italia si conferma una potenza nel settore. Un appuntamento per scoprire quali sono le potenzialità dell’ ecosistema spaziale applicate alla ricerca e non solo

Una manifestazione ideata e organizzata da Fiera Roma e Fondazione Edoardo Amaldi, un incontro tra gli attori della New Space Economy e della Old Economy che darà vita a nuove sinergie nel campo della ricerca scientifica spaziando nell’ambito istituzionale, accademico e commerciale, per poi riflettersi nella quotidianità di ciascuno di noi. In una parola: progresso. Perché oltre alla conoscenza dell’ignoto sopra le nostre teste, le nuove scoperte in campo spaziale comportano innumerevoli migliorie per la qualità della nostra vita.

New Space Economy European ExpoForum, tre giorni dedicati a 360 gradi all’economia dello spazio, con ospite d’eccezione l’astronauta Samantha Cristoforetti. Le nuove e le vecchie logiche dell’economia spaziale si incontreranno e confronteranno facendo il punto sulle nuove potenzialità dell’ecosistema spaziale. L’Italia distingue il suo ruolo tra i protagonisti mondiali del settore e si delinea come una potenza nel campo grazie al forte aumento del budget destinato all’Esa – Agenzia spaziale europea – e ai risultati ottenuti dalla delegazione italiana guidata dal sottosegretario Riccardo Fraccaro alla Ministeriale che si è chiusa nei giorni scorsi a Siviglia.

I tre giorni di fiera presentano un calendario fitto di incontri e dibattiti. Un importante momento per proseguire la riflessione su quanto emerso nell’appuntamento di Siviglia è previsto per il 10 dicembre alle ore 10.20 con la sessione plenaria “High level forum Round table on Cmin19”. Moderato dalla Direttrice di Formiche e Airpress Flavia Giacobbe, prenderanno la parola sul tema il Direttore generale ESA Johann-Dietrich Wörner e i vertici delle principali Agenzie spaziali europee, il Presidente Asi Giorgio Saccoccia, il Presidente Cnes Jean-Yves Le Gall, il President IAF Pascale Ehrenfreund, il Capo dell’Ufficio spaziale svizzero Renato Krpoun e il Direttore di Cdti Juan Carlos Cortes.

Un altro importante appuntamento è previsto per l’11 dicembre: “Global Space Economic Forum”, organizzato da Esa. Una panoramica sulle azioni comuni che il mondo spaziale può intraprendere assieme a quello istituzionale, accademico e commerciale con la presentazione di alcune delle collaborazioni industriali sviluppate in settori quali sicurezza informatica, guida autonoma, innovazione urbana e marittima.

Roberto Battiston, Fondazione E. Amaldi, Chair del Comitato scientifico di New Space Economy European ExpoForum ha dichiarato: “Investire sullo spazio significa investire sul futuro, anche in termini di miglioramenti concreti della vita sulla terra, dal settore della medicina a quello dell’agricoltura, passando per la mobilità e la sicurezza. La quasi totalità dei settori economici si interseca più o meno direttamente con lo spazio e la sua economia e l’Italia ha una filiera completa nel settore spaziale e ricopre un ruolo di leadership in Europa, confermandosi terzo contributore dell’Esa, nonché uno dei pochi Paesi capaci di fornire tecnologie e programmi in tutti i comparti (Scienza, Esplorazione e osservazione dell’Universo, Osservazione della Terra, Lanciatori, SSA (sicurezza), Telecomunicazioni, Navigazione e nuove tecnologie). Gli investimenti nel settore spaziale fatti negli ultimi 5 anni, culminati con le importanti decisioni appena prese alla Ministeriale Esa del 2019, danno all’Italia una straordinaria occasione di cogliere i benefici della New Space Economy. Come Fondazione Amaldi, con il lancio di questa manifestazione, ci siamo impegnati a dare il nostro contributo per promuovere questa eccezionale opportunità”.

A conferma delle sue parole l’Amministratore unico e Direttore generale di Fiera Roma Pietro Piccinetti: “L’Italia punta con forza sullo spazio come volano per lo sviluppo, l’innovazione e la competitività del Sistema-Paese. Come Fiera Roma siamo orgogliosi di contribuire, con questo evento che abbiamo come di consueto organizzato con una parte espositiva e una di simposio dai forti contenuti scientifici, a promuovere un ragionamento che coinvolga le Piccole e medie imprese, le istituzioni e il mondo accademico e della ricerca, sulle grandi sfide strategiche che attendono il nostro Paese e l’Europa su un terreno cruciale come quello dello spazio”.

Photo credits: Greg Rakozy

Italy,International Valve Summit, Bergamo celebrates the technology of industrial valves

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On May 24 and 25 in Bergamo will be held the second edition of the International Valve Summit, the international trade show for industrial valves, a leading Italian engineering company.

The event, hosted by the PROMOBERG Fair Company, represents one of the most important mechanical appointments, therefore, concerns valves technology and flow control solutions.

The driving sector is that of OIL & GAS, which in Italy is about 25 billion euros, of which about 8 billion are related to the sales of the industrial valves sector, an important market that represents one of the excellence of the Italian mechanical industry.

The “International Valve Summit” has been designed to give way to a major part of the O & G chain, an excellence of Italian mechanics that has some of the most important companies in Bergamo.

Schermata 2017-05-19 alle 22.24.12Promoter of the event Luca Pandolfi, head of the internationalization policies of Confindustria di Bergamo

The inspiration for this project was born by a study that Confindustria has achieved by meeting the needs of the industries of the province of Bergamo, says Dr. Pandolfi, the event this year hosts 205 companies with a strong growth compared to the first two years ago Which was about 150 participants.

Growth that represents the importance of the sector at international level, this sector in particular has a very strong tendency for internationalization, especially with regard to the oil and energy sector in general.

Screen 2017-05-19 at 22.25.47We will test the Italian industrial valves in Middle East or Eastern European pipelines or in the Algerian water pipelines. Indeed, the reference market in this sector is made up of very large multinationals, a target hard to reach without the support of an industrial system

Thirteen debate sessions with 50 exception speakers will be held in the two days of the event, which will address both technology-related issues in the industry, but also the procurement-related issues of large companies to explain the strategies of purchasing offices in the industry.

The O & O gas industry grows much faster than the rest of the subfund is a positive phenomenon that attests to the excellence and appreciation of the international market.

This year, the event envisages hosting about 8,000 visitors against 5700 last year, many of which will come from 57 countries worldwide, a major success for the 2017 International Valve Summit.

 

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WANNACRY RANSOMWARE: RECENT CYBER-ATTACK

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The European Cybercrime Centre, EC3, at Europol is working closely with affected countries cybercrime units and key industry partners to mitigate the threat and assist victims. The recent attack is at an unprecedented level and will require a complex international investigation to identify the culprits. The Joint Cybercrime Action Taskforce (JCAT), at EC3 is a group of specialist international cyber investigators and is specially designed to assist in such investigations and will play an important role in supporting the investigation.

Red Cell Challenges Cyber Warriors in Multiforce Exercise

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CAMP WILLIAMS, Utah, April 28, 2017 — Air Force Capt. Joshua Montgomery isn’t a criminal, but he plays one as part of his duties. He’s a member of an Air National Guard team that tests cyber defenses.

“It’s the best job in the military,” he said. “We get to break things. We get to go and do all of the things that would send you to jail in the real world. It’s fantastic.”

As a member of the 177th Information Aggressor Squadron at McConnell Air Force Base in Kansas, Montgomery tests cyber defense capabilities by attempting to hack into sensitive information systems.

“The idea of an information aggressor squadron is to understand the tactics that real-world adversaries like hackers and corporate espionage agents use,” he explained. He then uses that understanding to find network vulnerabilities that can be exploited.

Montgomery is putting his hacking skills to use as a member of the Red Cell during Cyber Shield 17, a cyber defense exercise that began here April 24 and continues until May 5.

Scenario-Based Role-Playing

Cyber Shield 17 is a National Guard and U.S. Army Reserve event that begins with a week of training and preparation and culminates in scenario-based cyber role-playing. It is the sixth iteration of the exercise, which began in 2012 and trains members of the Army National Guard, Air National Guard and Army Reserve, as well as civilians who work in law enforcement, intelligence and information technologies.

Participants each belong to one of several cells. Red Cell members, such as Montgomery, play the role of adversary hackers. Members of the Blue Cell attempt to defend against the Red Cell’s attacks. Members of the Gold Cell support the Blue Cell with coaching and mentorship, while White Cell members evaluate the Blue Cell’s performance.

As Red Cell members prepare to break into Blue Cell systems, their opposite numbers prepare for an experience that Blue Cell leader Army Maj. Kevin T. Mamula predicts will push them to their limits.

“The blue teams will be challenged to their breaking points by design,” said Mamula, who also works as the cyber network defense team lead for Ohio. “They will be stressed and frustrated and mad. But they will come out as a much more effective team.”

Crucial Training

Exercise participants emphasized that the threat that cyberattacks pose make this kind of challenging training crucial.

“Cyber threats are real,” said Army Capt. Joshua Hull from the Nebraska Joint Force Headquarters, who serves as assistant leader for the Nebraska Blue Team in Cyber Shield 17. “They are already all around us, and they affect every aspect of our daily interactions.”

Hull said he is confident his team will be able to succeed in warding off the Red Cell attacks, thanks to effective collaboration he has observed among his comrades.

“We have very good team cohesion,” Hull said. “We have a very good flow of information, and we’ve pulled our best and brightest. They have a good understanding of how network operations work.”

As Blue Cell fights an uphill battle in the cyber terrain, they will have the Gold Cell’s support. Army Lt. Col. Brad Rhodes, Gold Cell leader and commander of the Colorado Army National Guard’s Cyber Protection Team 174, said his team will provide struggling Blue Cell members with coaching and mentorship to help them learn and succeed.

“Our goal is that when the blue teams walk out of the door, they are feeling better about themselves and are more successful than when they first got here,” Rhodes said.

Red Cell leader Air Force Maj. Michael Erstein, who supervises the 177th Information Aggressor Squadron, said that Cyber Shield 17 fosters a learning environment by putting people of different backgrounds and levels of skill together.

Dedicated Interactions

“People who’ve never done this before get one-on-one dedicated interactions with individuals who’ve been doing this [for] 15-plus years,” Erstein said. “We are able to bring together experts from [the Defense Department], the government and the civilian world in one place and share that diverse perspective on cyberspace.”

“I’m very excited about being on a red team,” said Flo R. Bayer, a security analyst with the State of Wisconsin Department of Enterprise Technologies. “To see how hackers do things, their methodologies, will help me be better at defending the networks.”

“You don’t get an opportunity to learn from a group of people like this often, to apply this skill set often,” said Adam Hellmers, an electrical engineer with Radiance Technologies. “It’s a chance to develop higher skills and to further enhance your own self, your company’s self and the national interests.”

Cyber Shield 17 is far and away the best exercise he ever has encountered in his career, Montgomery said.

“It’s well organized,” he added. It’s well put together. And the teams, both red and blue, have made significant progress in securing DoD systems.”

President Putin will visit China in 2017: rapid development of trade and industrial ties with Beijing

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Russian President Vladimir Putin has revealed plans to visit China in May 2017 at a meeting with Chinese President Xi Jinping in Peru. Putin praised the rapid development of trade, industrial and high-tech ties between Moscow and Beijing. On Saturday, the two leaders met on the sidelines of the two-day Asian-Pacific Economic Forum (APEC). Putin said he has accepted an invitation to take part in events related to the implementation of Silk Road Economic Belt project, a large-scale initiative unveiled by Xi in 2013 that envisages the integration of trade and investment in Eurasia. One of the goals of a strategic Silk Road Economic Belt project is to link European and Asian countries with a transport, energy and a trade corridor. In June, Putin said he welcomes the project as a promising mutually beneficial initiative saying that wherever the road goes, it first runs through neighboring territories.

Germany is ready to contribute to the economic development of KSA

German experts will participate in the Internet summit in Jeddah as Germany is interested in being a partner in the Kingdom’s development of Vision 2030, with an exchange of the latest technology and education, said newly arrived German Consul General Holger Ziegeler. He also said that the Kingdom is one of Germany’s strongest partners in the region, not only due to oil, but also other industries that are very important. The Saudi government tries to invest heavily in infrastructure and future services for the population, and German companies are ready to contribute to this economic development. “Saudi Arabia and Germany are not only political partners but active in multilateral fields, partners in the economic field; large and small German companies are serving the Kingdom and economy of Germany,” Ziegeler added.

G7 and Japan cyberstrategy

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During the last meeting held in Japan last may, G7’s head of state adopted a joint declaration about cybersecurity issues.

Representatives of the biggest 7 economies in the world stated that Internet is a key driver for global economy: openness, interoperability, reliability and security are the cornerstones of this vision, as well as the free flow of informations and protection of human rights on line.

How G7 countries are going to empower their principle declaration?

Firstly, cooperation between all the actors responsible for cybersecurity: governments. business, research and society as a whole.

Secondly, international law: according to the G7 governments it is applicable, including the United Nations Charter, in cyberspace. Furthermore, cyber activities could amount to the use of force or an armed attack within the meaning of the United Nations Charter and customary international law.

A new UN Group of Governamentals Experts (GGE), is expected to discuss more how existing international law can be applied to cyberspace.

Finally, G7 encourage more states to join the Budapest Conventionon Cybercrime and support the work done by the G7 Roma – Lyon Group’s high-tech Crime subgroup.

Even though cybersecurity is one the most important issue in the international agenda, G7 declaration sounds quite predictable without introducing any important innovation in policies.

 

JAPAN CYBERSECURITY STRATEGY

What’s the framework of the country, the third economy in the world?

As most of the cybersecurity strategies, Japan adopted a white paper. The first edition was released in 2013, while a second one in september, 2015.

The Japan Cybersecurity basic act focus on govenerment led and non government actors.

Japan Cert and National Center of Incindent REadiness and Strategy for Cybersecurity are the responsible for developing national cybersecurity policy and ensuing the security of different public sector organizations, to put forward proposals as well the Basic Cybersecurity act.

Public – private partnership is another pillar of this strategy.

Surprisingly, for a country like japan, there are weak points, too, according to a Deloitte’s Asia Pacific Defence outlook 2016.

Japan is an aging country, and its population is quite unaware of the risks of cybercrime: the system as whole is weak because people don’t behave properly in the net.

There few efforts to promote domestic expertise on cyber issues.

Cooperation is a problem, too, because admitting of being attacked a behavior socially unaccepted: frauds or cyberattack are hidden to the community.

Island mentality is another element: japanese believe no threats can hit them because they live on an island protected by the sea. Obviously, it’s not the case when we talk about cyber attacks.

To sum up, Japan is an high-value target for its economic and technology power, and its policies and its approach toward cyber issues doesn’t seem fitting.

 

Leonardo Pizzuti

 

Growing digitisation in the EU

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On 25th February, the European Commission published the result of the 2016 Edition of the Digital Economy and Society Index (DESI). Good news. Data show a general growth; however, we are still far away from the full development of our digital capabilities.

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What is the DESI?

The DESI is an online tool to measure the progress of EU Member States towards a digital economy and society. More than 30 indicators define the DESI and are grouped into five policy areas: connectivity (25 % of the total score), human capital/digital skills (25 %), Internet use (15 %), integration of digital technology (20 %) and digital public service (15 %). Indeed, this index is used to identify which sectors needs more investment in order to improve the country’s performance.

The index not only shows the general status of the European Union -still far from the level of digitalization of countries such as the US or Japan-, but also points out the considerable differences among Member States. Denmark, Sweden and Finland take the lead in Europe but they are also top countries in world rankings. At the very bottom are Czech Republic, Bulgaria, Cyprus, France, Greece, Hungary, Poland and Slovakia: not only their DESI score is well below the EU average, but data show also a slower growth rate, which will increase the distance from the rest of EU members. The DESI, indeed, also shows the growth rate of the nation in the field of digital technologies. And here, once again, we can see a multi-speed Europe.

Some countries have a DESI score higher than the EU average, but also record a faster growth in the last year. We are talking about Austria, Estonia, Malta, Portugal, Germany and the Netherlands. Good growth rates also in Italy, Croatia, Lithuania, Romania, Slovenia and Spain, although their DESI score currently remains below average. However, according to analysts, there are good hopes for these countries to reduce the distances from the most digitally advanced countries. By contrast, a drop has been recorded in the growth of Denmark, Sweden, Finland, Ireland, Belgium, Lithuania and Ireland, though they DESI scores are still high.

What should we do to improve the situation? Last year, the EU approved the Digital Single Market strategy, a set of initiatives that countries have to deliver by the end of 2016 in order to coordinate and standardize digitization processes in EU countries. This strategy is built on three pillars: improving access to goods and digital services for consumers and industries across Europe; create a favorable environment and equal opportunities for the development of digital networks; maximise the growth potential in the sector.

Apparently, the implemented strategy is paying off. 71% of European households now have broadband access at high speed (in 2014 only 62%), while the number of subscribers to mobile broadband has increased up to 75 contracts every 100 inhabitants (compared to 64 last year). It is true, however, that there is still a lot of work to do, especially in some sectors. As the DISE report points out, for example, almost 45% of Europeans do not have basic digital skills, e.g. the use of email or the main editing tools. The e-commerce is still far from being a reality for small and medium enterprises: only 16% of them sell their products online and only 7.5% across the border. Promoting online shopping is not enough: it is essential to encourage electronic commerce, by approving a better legislation to protect consumers, especially in cross-border shopping. Finally, the data on public services are not satisfactory at all. Despite a greater variety of services made available online by Public Administrations, it seems that only 32% of users actually use these platforms.

On one hand, therefore, it is important that the EU provides a coherent and effective legislation that protects both citizens and entrepreneurs; on the other, Member States must support the creation of the digital single market, investing in the most underdeveloped sectors and promoting the digitalization of civil society. Achieving this goal will revitalize the European economy in general and make our market more competitive, but it will also allow EU members to make the most of the untapped potential, creating new opportunities (especially across the border) for enterprises, but also for individuals.

 

Paola Fratantoni

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Security and privacy: the eternal dilemma

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“Security and privacy. The eternal dilemma “. Sometimes it is so. Sometimes not. From a relative and business perspective, privacy is one of the fundamental aspects of security, meaning that a bug in the privacy system will involve considerable damage to the company and its customers.

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In the enterprise field, and in almost the whole world, the issue of privacy is recognized as one of the fundamental ones, which may imply – in the larger companies, the separation of the post of privacy “officer” or “consultant” from the most generic post of “security manager”. But from an absolute point of view, privacy and security are two titans destined for confrontation. What and how you oppose? Undoubtedly in Europe there is a double need: on one hand making Europe citizens grow and progress in terms of human rights and individual rights, and perhaps privacy, at first glance it would seem one of the most important individual rights almost to rise, nowadays, in the category of natural rights.

From another point of view, it is necessary that national and European institutions literally invade the privacy of residents and foreigners who apply to reside in the old continent. This, of course, for clear reasons of public order and security, in order to counteract the sad phenomenon whom every day we hear and read: from illegal immigration to migrants smuggling, from terrorism to money laundering.

And that’s why Europe is taking on regulatory instruments to govern on the one hand the duties / rights in the field of private citizens and, secondly, the duties / rights of the institutions towards the citizens. We are talking, respectively, of the Regulation and the Directive on Data Protection. “Regulation” and “directive” are two very general words, which bear far more complex legal and long nomenclatures, but, in the data protection background, interested people can immediately understand what they refer to.

In both normative sources, upcoming promulgation – it  seems that both measures have passed the steps of the discussion in trilogue – roles, responsibilities, recipients and “actors” of the data protection system and, consequently, privacy are defined and soon they will cover Europe, the United States and Third Countries. Much importance will be obviously assumed by the national controller authorities, which are already partly coordinated by the European Data Protection Supervisor.

From an operational point of view and spare change, however, it should change little, but it will be very useful once and for all to give uniformity to the individual national laws and procedures to provide common data access and litigation systems.

In any case, to date, the European and national institutions acting in the field of security are – in extreme and deep synthesis – legitimate holders of power related to the use, collection and retention of data, to fulfill their purposes and founding their institutional purposes. The so called “Swedish Initiative”, the “Prüm Decisions” are nothing more than legal attempts, already adopted or in the process of transposition in national law, in order to provide a better use of these information and their exchange between Authorities.

And this is the knot of the question: according to the European and national case-law, the compression of the right to privacy has so far been generally considered correct, if the same interest conflicts with higher interests, such as the right to life, or the principle that it must a crime must be prevented or brought to completion. In fact these – let’s call them philosophical – principles, are underlying the legislative existence of disparate databases – even if, some of them, are not yet operational – that support justice and European police forces in their daily mission of prevention and contrasting crime.

In this specific sector there have been fundamental judgments of the European Court of Justice who have disciplined and completely redesigned the architecture of data protection, especially in the economic relations with major US giants, which are in fact the monopoly of social communication and service providers online.

For example, think about the famous sentence on the “Data Retention” (to Security-vs-Privacy-420x300which we refer integrally) that made completely skip the agreements so far perfectly and “efficient” between EU and US. Before the sentence, every non-EU state, which managed European citizens’ data was in fact free to manage by itself: or rather, despite having to ensure an adequate data protection regime, it was quite free from forms of controls and inspections by the EU institutions. The  so called principle of the “Safe Harbour” proved to be insufficient to protect the privacy of citizens who entrusted to the giants of the global telematics their data, their own interests and their own photographs. Following the judgment, the “Safe Harbour” has been completely revised and replaced by a safer agreement called “Privacy Shield “.

European institution which is tasked with signing these agreements is the Commission. The agreement has developed has developed a new legal system putting, so to speak, “the stakes” for the United States, providing clear guarantees and transparency requirements applicable to access to data from the government of the US, by imposing specific obligations on companies and a robust application, providing effective protection of the rights of EU citizens with different possibilities of litigation and devising a mechanism of annual joint review of the effectiveness of the shield.

So, to sum up, Europe is not in contrast with common sense: on the one hand provides for the guarantee of the right to privacy issues and fundamental rights, on the other manages to balance strongly her action of collecting information necessary to safeguard of its citizens, defending its interests and its autonomy from friends across the Atlantic.

On this dilemma some very strong doubts remain, especially with regard to national legislation. Consider, for example, in countries where prostitution is illegal. Many political movements or currents of thought are clamoring for the legalization and the drafting of specific rules. A writer’s opinion is that a law in matter can never be enacted, precisely for reasons of privacy, even if the “prostitution” topic is touches many others: human rights, gender-based violence, exploitation, immigration, acts of disposal of his own body and so on.

If a law to regularize and reinstitute prostitution would issued, the same would conflict – without limitation – with rules requiring the accommodation lists to be communicated to the authorities (and thus to enter into the databases). Inevitably a client and a prostitute would be identified, and a profile of the people who attend the same prostitute or who usually frequents that area could equally be traced or, worse, sexual habits (which are, for now, quite rightly, a as sensitive) could be profiled. Again, it is essential for the authorities to know hotel customer records (that can be crucial in resolving judicial and investigation cases) and hotel owners are oblige to communicate them.

Here the dilemma: to protecting the public interest or  the individual interests?

Domenico Martinelli

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Domenico Martinelli
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