At the end of this month, the 2023 ICAO Security Week will provide unique opportunities for covering all aspects of aviation security, including aviation cybersecurity and other emerging issues. The week-long event will also include an Industry Day and side activities.
This year’s ICAO Security Week, which is taking place from 23-27 October 2023, will look beyond the prevention of acts of unlawful interference to also address the resilience of civil aviation’s critical infrastructure against past, new and emerging threats. This is a pivotal event in the field of aviation security and cybersecurity, offering a comprehensive programme of sessions and discussions. The event’s primary focus is on safeguarding civil aviation and critical infrastructure against a spectrum of threats, both traditional and emerging.
In the Leaders Plenary, senior leaders will address the challenges and opportunities in enhancing the resilience of aviation’s critical infrastructure while emphasizing cooperation among various governmental agencies. Other sessions delve into topics such as crafting effective aviation security policy, aviation cybersecurity, conflict zone risk management, integrated risk management, and the integration of digital identity and cybersecurity for safer air travel. The event also explores the role of artificial intelligence, innovative security solutions for air cargo, and countermeasures against unmanned aircraft system threats. Additionally, discussions will touch on the impact of disruptions and security breaches on airports and airlines.
Complementing the sessions, an interactive exhibition will provide a platform for industry stakeholders to showcase their innovations and expertise. ICAO’s Security Week is a unique opportunity for leaders, experts, and professionals in the aviation and cybersecurity sectors to come together, exchange knowledge, and collectively work towards enhancing the safety and resilience of the global civil aviation network. With a focus on addressing both existing and emerging challenges, this event aims to chart a path toward a safer and more secure future for air travel. This event covers core security topics (conflict zones, cargo security, human factors, etc.) as well as emerging and evolving security-related topics such as cybersecurity, unmanned and remotely piloted aircraft systems, and major disruptions caused by airport breaches:
- Leaders Plenary: aviation critical infrastructure protection and resilience – This session provides an opportunity for senior leaders to discuss current challenges and opportunities in addressing the resilience of civil aviation’s critical infrastructure against past, new and emerging threats. Emphasis will be placed on new technologies and innovative processes and solutions while strengthening cooperation across different governmental agencies responsible for critical infrastructure protection, aviation and cybersecurity.
- Aviation – pivotal piece of the national critical infrastructure puzzle – The threats to national critical infrastructure are growing in complexity, with new modus operandi, as well as a broader range of perpetrators. Amongst many targets, terrorist groups continue to perceive attacks against international civil aviation as an effective way to cause substantial loss of life, economic damage and disruption. Despite considerable security enhancements across all civil aviation sectors, it’s often implemented in silos. This session will explore how the civil aviation sector can contribute to counter-terrorism frameworks and interagency cooperation at the broader national level.
- Charting the Skies: crafting effective aviation security policy for a safer future – Aviation security policy plays a pivotal role in safeguarding the global air transportation network against evolving threats. This session will delve into the complex landscape of aviation security policy, addressing the challenges faced by governments and industry stakeholders in creating robust frameworks that ensure the safety and resilience of air travel. With a focus on risk assessment, regulatory cooperation, and technological advancements, the session aims to foster dialogue and knowledge exchange to develop effective and adaptable aviation security policies that align with the rapidly changing security landscape.
- Aviation cybersecurity and critical infrastructure protection – Aviation cybersecurity is part of a wider ecosystem that covers the protection of digital and physical infrastructure at all levels. This requires coordination between different concerned aviation and non-aviation authorities to ensure structured, holistic and consistent regulation and oversight of aviation stakeholders under all relevant regulatory frameworks. The panel will discuss the experience of States and stakeholders in achieving this coordination from regulatory and operational perspectives.
- Flight Safety and Security in Turbulent Times: Navigating Conflict Zones – Conflict zones pose an undeniable risk to civil aviation operations as demonstrated by the downings of Korean Airlines Flight 007 in 1983, Malaysian Airlines Flight 17 in 2014, Ukraine International Airlines Flight 752 in 2020, among other tragedies. As global conflicts increase and weapon systems become more sophisticated, the global civil aviation community remains committed to enhancing the safety of aircraft operations over or near conflict zones. This session will bring together a panel of experts from States and industry to discuss the challenges in managing conflict zone risk. Panellists will address best practices in assessing and mitigating risk to civil aviation operations as conflicts emerge or evolve, as well as existing guidance, such as the Third edition of the ICAO Risk Assessment Manual for Civil Aircraft Operations Over or Near Conflict Zones (Doc 10084), and the work developed by the global Safer Skies Consultative Committee.
- Integrated Risk Management: preparing for a future state of industry who face and own risks known and unknown – This panel discussion by IATA will touch upon Integrated Risk Management (IRM) as a systematic, proactive, and holistic approach to assessing and managing risk in any organization. In the context of civil aviation, it is widely known to involve the identification, assessment, and prioritization of potential hazards and risks, that lead to developing and implementing strategies to control and mitigate. The overall goal of the effort is to continuously improve the safety and security performance outcomes and organizational efficiency. Join this session to hear the panel discuss the benefits of this approach towards a more informed decision-making process, a safer and more efficient operation, and evolve culture that values safety, security, and risk awareness.
- Aviation Cybersecurity: modern risk management approaches to safe and secure digital innovation and aircraft airworthiness – The next generation of civil aviation airspace will involve a lot more traffic as well as new technologies that have not necessarily made their mark yet in the civil aviation industry. As we are preparing to augment our cyber and information security capabilities to support this new airspace, how do we make it more cyber resilient? This IATA session will embrace modern risk management approaches, and discuss the work being done between industry stakeholders like IATA and ICCAIA.
- The Perfect Duo – Technology and Human Elements: improving security at airports – Within the dynamic aviation landscape, airports face evolving challenges, where striking a balance between innovative technology and the essential human touch is crucial. This ACI session will explore the impacts of new technologies and the effects of mental health on employees, and the need for diverse, equitable, and inclusive workforces in ensuring efficient, secure, and compassionate security operations.
- Leveraging Open Source Intelligence for aviation security risk assessment – Data, information and intelligence collection on aviation security related events and occurrences is of key importance in understanding the current security landscape, identifying potential threats and anticipating trends. Besides the information provided by government official services, not widely accessible, some private companies now provide services of Open Source Intelligence (OSINT), which include data, information and their analysis to help aviation authorities and operators improve their risk assessment and risk management processes. The session will bring together experts in the field of Open Source Intelligence, specialized in aviation, and will discuss its value.
- Harmonizing risk management in Safety and Security: towards an Integrated Risk Management? The development of Management Systems, inherited from the standardized Quality Management Systems approach, brings in the aviation domain the Safety Management Systems, or SMS, the Security Management Systems, or SecMS and now the Information Security Management Systems, or ISMS. Sometimes mandatory, more often recommended, the adoption by the industry of those Management Systems raises some questions on whether they have to be kept separate or rather merged in an Integrated Risk Management System. The session will discuss the pros and cons of different options, from the respective perspectives of the Authorities and the operators.
- Advancing Aviation Security: synergy between digital identity and cybersecurity – As the aviation industry embraces digital transformation, the integration of digital identity and cybersecurity has become a critical focus for ensuring safe and secure air travel. This session will delve into the relationship between digital identity, cybersecurity and aviation security, exploring how these interconnected domains can work together to fortify airport and airline operations against emerging threats. By leveraging innovative technologies, such as biometrics, encryption, and real-time monitoring, the session aims to shed light on the evolving landscape of aviation security and its transformative impact on passenger safety and data protection.
- From the other side of the world to your door: how innovative security solutions keep global trade protected – Air cargo demonstrated to be crucial in transporting goods and supplies to where they were most needed during the pandemic. The revamped importance and visibility air cargo has acquired as a result of the increase of e-commerce and the most recent business practices that take advantage of new technologies may also be accompanied by an increase in its attractiveness as a terrorist target. For this reason, it is paramount that security measures keep pace with the innovations the air cargo sector has undergone during these recent years. This session will explore innovative ways to implement security measures, making use of state of the art methods and technologies, and without impacting the smooth flow of the global supply chain.
- WANTED: innovative solutions to protect airports from the misuse of unmanned aircraft systems (UAS) – As the proliferation of UAS continues to rise, so does the need for effective countermeasures to mitigate the growing risks their misuse poses to aviation operations. This session will discuss cutting-edge technologies, detection systems, and other defensive measures and processes that integrate into existing security frameworks. Connecting with experts in the field, we’ll aim to foster dialogue and explore innovative solutions. Together, let’s strengthen critical aviation infrastructure against evolving UAS threats, ensuring safer skies for all.
- Aviation under siege: understanding the impact of disruptions to airports and airlines operations – In recent years, airports and airlines face disruptions and security breaches that challenge the integrity and efficiency of their operations. This session aims to delve into the complex landscape of airport breaches and cyber-attacks posed by activism and hacktivism, exploring the motivations behind these actions, their potential consequences, and the measures that can be taken to mitigate such disruptions. As a crucial part of the global transportation network, airports face unique challenges when it comes to handling protests, demonstrations, and cyber-attacks initiated by activist groups and hackers. The session will bring together experts from various fields, including aviation security, law enforcement, cybersecurity, and civil rights advocacy, to shed light on this emerging trend and discuss strategies for safeguarding the functioning of airports amidst growing civil dissent and cyber threats.
- Exploring the Power of AI: the potential to support aviation security – The session will focus on artificial intelligence (AI) and its role in aviation security. Advancements in AI, particularly generative AI, have put AI on the global agenda with both the public and private sectors seeking to better understand how to leverage its potential. The session will explore practical applications of AI in the security sector, as well the legal, ethical and policy challenges that applications such as these may present. In this regard, lessons learned from those utilizing AI in other sectors will be explored.
To complement the event, an interactive exhibition will be set up outside the meeting hall with representatives from States, manufacturers, airports, airlines, and other aviation, security and cybersecurity related industries. This event will be presented in English only. The ICAO Security Week will be broadcast live on ICAO TV. To access the recordings for live or on-demand viewing, you need to subscribe to ICAO TV, where access is free-of-charge.