Trinational Cybersecurity Days 2021

29. März 2021

From 18 to 20 February, the University of Applied Sciences and Arts Northwestern Switzerland FHNW welcomed close to 100 participants at the ‘2nd Tri-National Cybersecurity Days’. The three-day further education for small business from France, Germany and Switzerland was conducted in a virtual setting. In the days following up to the workshop, a special package containing a LEGO starter kit and snacks was sent  as a surprise and to welcome all guests.

On day 1, we discussed the challenges and lessons learnt from increasing digitalization in times of COVID-19 restrictions. The guest speakers presented their country-specific viewpoints :

  • Switzerland: Nathalie Gratzer, Federal Office of Economic Supply and Dr. Manuel Suter, Swiss National Cybersecurity Center provided an insightful overview from a governmental perspective
  • Germany: Prof. Philipp Nenninger (University of Applied Sciences Karlsruhe) focused on the risks of intelligent automation
  • France: Edgardo Montes de Oca, CEO of cybersecurity SME Montimage elaborated on the security concerns and measures of SMEs during the lockdown

In addition to receiving valuable insight, participants were invited to actively adopt the Lego Serious Play method. They built LEGO models and shared them in the community or in the Digital Apéro following the event.

On day 2, an enjoyable cybersecurity awareness check awaited the participants. Breakout sessions in different languages, French, German, and English allowed exchanging in small groups and  experiencing the effectiveness of awareness raising by means of a competitive quiz. Alexandre Curty and Henning Hanke from proofpoint hosted this multi-lingual workshop.

The day ended with an informal closing in the virtual environment of workadventure.

SheLeadsTech was the motto of day 3. In collaboration with ISACA, women active in cybersecurity offered the following workshops.

  • cybersecurity challenges of small businesses – Jessica Peichl, School of Education Freiburg together with our “Cybersecurity Defender” Naomi Marinis
  • a tool for data protection impact assessment – Esther Zaugg, master student researcher FHNW
  • cybersecurity & project management – Andrea Tribelhorn, ISACA Swiss chapter
  • case study of cybersecurity incidents – Christine Seifermann, DIGIHUB Südbaden

It was a special honor, that we could set the stage for the H2020 EU GEIGER Project, which is led by FHNW. As part of this project, we educate Cybersecurity Defenders that serve as multipliers of cybersecurity knowledge in their field. On the Trinational Cybersecurity Days, Naomi de Marinis, a hairdresser’s apprentice from Switzerland and workshop co-host, was nominated as the very first GEIGER defender.

Cybersecurtiy Defender Naomi de Marinis

The 2021 Trinational Cybersecurity Days were a big success. Participants could gain new, hands-on insights, broaden their business network and just have fun by interacting and learning at the same time. We look forward to staying in touch with the trinational cybersecurity community. The event was funded by the Interreg-project TITAN-E. Special thanks to Emanuel Löffler, Natalie Jonkers & Frank Sippach, who contributed as organizer, trouble-shooter, and communication support.

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