Global business leaders unite on Internet governance priorities at annual UN-linked forum in Lithuania

  • 8 September 2010

Emerging technologies such as cloud computing promise to empower developed and developing countries alike, but stakeholders must unite on finding cohesive global policies that can address associated issues including access, security and consumer concerns. This is just one of the key agenda items to be tabled next week at the 5th Internet Governance Forum (IGF) in Lithuania.

The IGF was set up by the United Nations (UN) four years ago to facilitate the exchange of information and best practices on issues contributing to the sustainability, stability and robustness of the Internet. Every year stakeholders from businesses, governments, civil society, and technical and intergovernmental organizations attend to discuss topics that include privacy, security and infrastructure policy issues, such as strategies for promoting continued investment and deployment.

To delve deeper into the relationship between cloud computing and Internet governance, ICC’s Business Action to Support the Information Society (BASIS) initiative will host an IGF workshop together with the Government of Kenya on the penultimate day of the forum. This session will encourage dialogue on a range of related issues while exploring the many benefits of widespread cloud computing adoption. Herbert Heitmann, Executive Vice President for External Communications at Royal Dutch Shell and Chair of the ICC Commission on E-business, IT and Telecoms (EBITT) will moderate the session and other panellists joining the workshop will include:

Joseph Alhadeff , Vice President for Global Public Policy and Chief Privacy Officer, Oracle Corporation; Vice-Chair, ICC EBITT Commission

Vikram Kumar, Chief Executive, InternetNZ

Alice Munyua, Board Member of Communications Commission of Kenya, Ministry of Information and Communication, Government of Kenya

Pablo Molina, Chief Information Officer, Associate Vice President and Professor, Georgetown University; Board Member, EPIC

Christiaan Van Der Valk, Chief Executive Officer, TrustWeaver; Co-Chair, ICC Task Force on Security and Authentication

“Cloud computing has gained real momentum over the last year, particularly amongst the enterprise sector. While this trend is encouraging and holds enormous potential as a way to deliver services in developing countries, informed policy choices are needed so businesses, governments and other users can realize the full benefits of cloud services in a manner that protects users’ security and privacy,” said Herbert Heitmann.

“Our workshop will provide a range and balance of perspectives from participants, creating emphasis on issues that are of importance to developing countries and stakeholders in the further adoption of these solutions.”

ICC will also host an Open Forum at the IGF to showcase its work on data protection and privacy and outline the best practice tools it has created to address trans-border data flows and other relevant issues.

Ellen Blackler, Executive Director, Public Policy, AT&T will moderate the session and explained: “Over the past decade, the International Chamber of Commerce (ICC) has produced and promoted standardized, practical tools to help companies comply with cross-border data protection rules to better safeguard the personal data of individuals. Anyone joining this Forum can look forward to learning more about ICC’s role in advancing accountability and assurance in international data flows.”

Other experts to join the discussion will include:

Andrius Iskauskas Chair, ICC Lithuania’s EBITT Commission; Member of the Board, ICC Lithuania

Joseph Alhadeff , Vice President for Global Public Policy and Chief Privacy Officer, Oracle Corporation; Vice-Chair, ICC EBITT Commission

Zahil Jamil, Barrister-at-law, Jamil & Jamil; Chair, ICC Pakistan’s EBITT Committee and Member of the Executive Board, ICC Pakistan

Christopher Kuner, Partner, Hunton & Williams; Chair, ICC Task Force on Privacy and the Protection of Personal Data

Every year, BASIS organizes business presence and participation at the IGF, to raise awareness of what business needs in order to continue contributing to the development of the information society, particularly through more informed policy choices. One of the group’s main priorities at this year’s forum will be to promote the global business perspective that continuation of the meeting is vital to ensure ongoing Internet innovation and the required conditions to attract investment.

ICC BASIS members value the IGF as a venue to interact with representatives from governments, civil society, the technical community, international organizations, and business on a range of Internet governance issues. The opportunity to share best practices and discuss policy challenges and approaches leads to informed policymaking.

In addition to the planned workshops, ICC BASIS will also host daily briefings for business people participating in the IGF from 08:00-9:00 at the IGF convention center. The briefings bring ICC BASIS members as well as new business participants together to share and reflect, and organize their contributions at the IGF.

Workshop logistics:

Internet governance: implications of cloud computing – 16 Sep 2010, 11:30-13:30, room 1

ICC on data protection and privacy – 15 Sep 2010, 11:30-13:30, room 6