Foreign minister Peter Szijjarto (l) and Speaker Laszlo Kover – Photo: MTI

Foreign minister: Hungary intelligence services doing utmost against cyber-attacks

House speaker: Intelligence, fast action crucial for democracies

The superiority of intelligence services and resulting ability for fast action is crucial for democratic states as opposed to non-democratic countries and terrorist organisations, House Speaker Laszlo Kover told a Parliamentary Intelligence-Security Forum held in Budapest on Monday.

Security has become a primary factor in terms of competitiveness in all areas of life, Kover said in his address in Parliament, and mentioned recent developments in Afghanistan, which showed that “it could be a matter of life and death if the intelligence services make mistakes or deliver false information to decision makers”. Military, financial, or technological advantages are not enough if they are not coupled with better intelligence for political decision making or if politicians fail to appropriately use the information received, he argued.

Former US congressman Robert Pittenger, the founder and president of the Forum, said that the United States considered international cooperation of countries of paramount importance, stressing that working together could make the intelligence services much more effective.

Marc Dillard, Charge d’Affaires of the US embassy in Budapest, said it was important that the economic advantages of new technologies should be exploited, and warned that security should not be compromised for short-term economic advantages.

Foreign minister: Hungary intelligence services doing utmost against cyber-attacks

Hungary’s intelligence services will make every effort to protect the country against cyber-attacks and trace every possible threat, the foreign minister told an international security conference held in the Parliament in Budapest on Monday.

The digital revolution in recent decades has redefined all areas of people’s lives, Peter Szijjarto told the Parliamentary-Intelligence Security-Forum, an event established by former US Congressman Robert Pittinger in 2014.

Data has become the most important resource, almost as important as the steam engine was when it was invented in the 18th century or hydrocarbons discovered in the 20th century, Szijjarto said, noting a six-fold jump in the number of broadband mobile subscriptions from 820 million to 5.2 billion over the past ten years.

“At the same time, the number of cyber-attacks has increased with hackers posing a serious threat to private and corporate users and state organisations as well,” he said.

The remote work and online classes schemes introduced due to the pandemic have increased vulnerability, Szijjarto said, noting that terrorists and radical groups have also been using the net to spread their ideologies.

Szijjarto said cyber crimes have so far cost 6,000 billion dollars to the global corporate sector this year alone and are estimated by experts to cost over 10,000 billion in 2025.

“In Hungary, we will make every effort to protect the entrepreneurs and our citizens; our national security strategy places great emphasis on this type of threat,” the foreign minister said, adding that the EU and NATO would soon adopt a new cyber security strategy.

Leave a Reply