November 19, 2018

Ikhom Abdullaev Uzbekistan MP in The Hague

By Roy Lie Atjam.

From 2-5 October 2018 the annual Cybersecurity Week, organized by The Hague Security Delta, was held in The Hague. Simultaneously the Dutch Ministry of Justice and Security and the Ministry of Economic Affairs and Climate Policy organized the One Conference which aims to facilitate the exchange of knowledge and ideas concerning cybersecurity.

It was during these events, on Wednesday 3 October 2018, that I had the pleasure of meeting Mr. lkhom Abdullaev, PhD at his hotel in The Hague. He is here to expand his network to hopefully meet with as many kindred spirits as possible and to share cyber threat legislation. An event of such international stature is an ideal venue to attain these objectives.

Who is Mr. Abdullaev. First and foremost, he is a married man with two adult children and also the proud grandfather of three grandsons. With this his posterity is safeguarded one would say. Mr. Abdullaev has built an impressive resume. Besides being a proud patriarch, he is a former director of an NGO dealing in ICT. For the past nine years, he has shifted his focus to politics holding several positions in the Uzbek government, which has a presidential system similar to that of France. Abdullaev currently works as:

  • Chairman of the Committee of the Legislative Chamber of the “Oliy Majlis” / Parliament of Uzbekistan(issues of innovative development, information policy and information technologies)
  • Member of the Uzbekistan National Revival Democratic Party. This party holds 36 seats in the Uzbek Parliament. The ruling government has 53 seats out of a total of 150.
  • Chairman of the Public Council on the openness of state bodies. On behalf of the public, this council monitors an “openness index” of government bodies in Uzbekistan and publishes it twice a year.

 

Abdullaev is no novice in The Hague; he has been here in the past seeking cooperation between the Uzbekistan parliamentary committees and the Dutch parliamentary committees for security and justice on cybersecurity. He relates how in 2017 the Organization for Security and Co-operation in Europe (OSCE), established a work group to deal with cybersecurity. The focus is to benefit from mutual experiences.

The Republic of Uzbekistan is a member of the CIS – Commonwealth of Independent States, the Shanghai Cooperation Organization (SCO) and the Organization for Security and Co-operation in Europe (OSCE). It is also a member of the Inter-Parliamentary Union.

For the past two years, President Shavkat Mirziyoyev’s government has implemented many changes to improve democracy in his country.

It is of paramount importance for the public to have a free flow of information. To achieve this, the president has issued a decree that each citizen has the right to pose a question, make requests and receive responses to their questions. This presidential decree applies to all level of government; national, regional and municipal.

The Netherlands also has such a law called “Wet Openbaarheid van Bestuur” (WOB). In addition, there’s also the phenomena “ombudsman”; an official who’s appointed to look into complaints against the government.

Another main focus of the Uzbek parliament is Cybersecurity. It is no secret that in our era of technology, cybercrime remains an unrelenting threat to governmental systems, the energy and public sector, and critical infrastructure objects, particularly in the financial sector. From major governments to small households, internet safety is an ongoing plague that unfortunately has no major solution in the foreseeable future.

While politicians like Mr. Abdullaev and cybersecurity experts are continuing to share ideas on fighting cybercrime in numerous ways, we do well to ask ourselves: in what ways am I protecting my personal data? To what extent do I stick to compliance requirements on corporate or governmental level?

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