On the occasion of the closing ceremony of the TICAL2021 Conference, last September 2, the general director of the National Education and Research Network (RNP), Nelson Simões, and the executive directors of CEDIA (Ecuador), CUDI (Mexico), REUNA (Chile), and RedCLARA signed a Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) for the creation of the Cyber Security Group of Academic Networks (NRENs) in Latin America, with the mutual conviction that Information Security is of great value to institutions.
The agreement aims to "facilitate the implementation of specific activities, with the objective of establishing the minimum requirements for the identification, establishment, coordination, development and implementation of the Cybersecurity Group, through collaboration between RedCLARA member networks in the Information Security and Cybersecurity area”.
The five signatory networks - CEDIA, CUDI, REUNA, RNP and RedCLARA - will initially compose the Coordination Committee of the Group, with the objective of reaching agreements on the principles and conditions under which cooperation for the creation and implementation of the Group of Cybersecurity will be carried out, and on the inclusion of new member networks of RedCLARA.
According to the MoU, cooperation may be carried out through joint project planning, coupling of developments in the area of Information Security and Cybersecurity, Cybersecurity certification for RedCLARA and NRENs member institutions, development of cybersecurity tools and services, cybersecurity training and awareness programs, and alliances with organizations and manufacturers, among others. The Group may also incorporate other lines of action that it deems important and useful for RedCLARA's member networks.
See what each of the directors said about signing the agreement:
Luis Eliécer Cadenas, Executive Director of RedCLARA: “The signing of this agreement reminds me of the one we signed in TICAL2020, for the creation of the Latin American University Telemedicine Network (RUTE), which, as we have seen, is yielding important results. The MoU reflects the value we place on securing our networks and what that means as an opportunity, service and support for the community we serve”.
Paola Arellano, Executive Director of REUNA (Chile): “I was lucky to participate in TICAL-SEC, the Safety track in this edition of TICAL, and in addition to recognizing the progress being made, which is very important, it is impressive to see the opportunities that are being opened up and the responsibility we have as advanced networks. This agreement represents a very important next step in consolidating these working groups and the support we must give them. Working together we can do so much more. I celebrate this MoU! I am very happy and I hope new networks will join this initiative”.
Nelson Simões, Executive Director of RNP (Brazil): “I believe we have security challenges, as well as joint challenges in terms of identifying human talent and taking advantage of the opportunities we may have in our national education, research and innovation systems, and probably, also cybersecurity. I think RedCLARA's job is to call attention to joining efforts for this initiative. This will be very important to all of us. We are showing that we care and that we have something that sets us apart from other initiatives, in the sense that we have neutrality and the calculated use of common developments for the public good that reaches our communities, but also society as a whole”.
Juan Pablo Carvallo, Executive Director of CEDIA (Ecuador): “As Paola said, I am extremely happy to sign this collaboration agreement, one more, and it is becoming a great habit at RedCLARA, to learn from each other. We learned from Brazil, for example, which supported us in creating our CSIRT. Then we had the opportunity to share our experience with REUNA, from Paola, and we also did it with Casasús in Mexico. We hope to continue this dynamic, which, in my opinion, is the raison d'être of NRENs: not only receiving services and support, but also accompanying other partners in their development and growth. So we support each other as a whole. I am very happy with the signing of this agreement, which will certainly enrich and strengthen us all in the region”.
Carlos Casasús, Executive Director of CUDI (Mexico): “Providing the tools that we collectively implement in networks to protect the traffic that passes through them and, finally, the possibility of forming alliances with a large number of companies that provide security to bring them closer together. Universities, supporting the purchasing power of all of us, will have a dramatic impact. If national education networks simply become a safe environment and universities begin to trust that being associated with their country's NRENs will allow them to create a safer environment than the commercial Internet, it will provide a new reason to participate in our associations. We must continue in this role of creating regional public goods; we are a cooperative force like few in the world”.
In the beginning, the MoU will have a temporary validity of two years and it is expected that in the next few months all RedCLARA member networks will register.