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US and Israel Announce New Cybersecurity Pact

The United States and Israel announced a bilateral pact regarding cybersecurity. The two nations have traditionally been allies in foreign relations since the latter nation's founding in 1948. One portion of Donald Trump's first international visit as President was in Israel last May.

The pact was announced by Trump administration homeland security and cyber-terrorism advisor Tom Bossert during the Cyber Week conference in Tel Aviv yesterday.

At the conference, Bossert said, “These high-level meetings represent the first step in strengthening bilateral ties on cyber-issues following President Trump’s visit to Israel. The agility Israel has in developing solutions will innovate cyber-defenses that we can test here and bring back to America. Perfect security may not be achievable, but we have within our reach a safer and more secure internet.”

According to Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu, the country is hit by dozens of cyber-attacks per month. Israel has an equivalent to Silicon Valley that's colloquially referred to as “Silicon Wadi.” Israel's high tech industry features IBM acquired companies Worklight, Trusteer, and Diligent Technologies, Intel acquired companies Envara, Comsys, and InVision Biometrics, and Google acquired companies SlickLogin, Waze, and Quiksee. “Silicon Wadi” also has many firms that have been acquired by Apple, Amazon, Facebook, Hewlett-Packard, Siemens, Microsoft, and Cisco. Israel has an estimated over-400 startup tech companies in total.

The United States has funded Israel's Iron Dome, Arrow and David’s Sling anti-missile systems. Bossert cited the properties in his assertion to support Israel in cybersecurity matters regarding Iran, Hamas, Hezbollah, and ISIS.

The pact is a product of an American and Israeli working group which will have further meetings in Tel Aviv over the course of this week. On Monday, Netanyahu met with Bossert and White House cybersecurity coordinator Rob Joyce in an official photo tweeted by the verified US Embassy of Israel account. According to the Embassy, “They discussed creating joint cyber-teams to develop cyber-policy, protecting crucial infrastructure, research and development, and more.”

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