Organization of American States (OAS)
OAS Organizes Training Course for Computer Security Incident Response Teams (CSIRTs) in the Americas
Mar 9, 2015 - 4:51:32 PM

From left to right: Neil Klopfenstein, Executive Secretary of the Inter-American Committee against Terrorism (CICTE) Jennifer May Alice Loten, Counselor, Interim Representative of Canada to the OAS Melanie Rieback, First - Geant Jan Phillip Velders, First Geant Date: March 09, 2015 Place: Washington, DC Credit: Maria Patricia Leiva/OAS

The Organization of American States (OAS) today began a training course on Computer Security Incident Response Teams (CSIRTs) aimed at technical staff responsible for the development and management of CSIRTs from Dominica, the Dominican Republic, Honduras, Nicaragua, Saint Kitts and Nevis, Suriname and Trinidad and Tobago, at its headquarters in Washington, DC.

The opening of the event, organized by the Cyber Security Program of the Inter-American Committee against Terrorism (CICTE) of the OAS, with the support of the Forum of Incident Response and Security Teams (FIRST) and the GEANT Association, included remarks by the Interim Representative of Canada to the OAS, Jennifer Loten, who said that recent decades "have demonstrated that the internet is playing an increasingly important role in the public and private sectors, fundamentally altering the way of doing business and delivering services and shaping the new social and cultural vibrancy of our countries." In that context, she continued, a secure and reliable internet "is a necessary element to advance our competitiveness in the global market, as individuals and businesses rely on secure and stable digital infrastructure for business transactions and the protection of personal and business information."

The delegate of Canada highlighted the alarming increase in the number of cyber incidents directed against all levels of society worldwide, and outlined her country's commitment in the fight against cyber crime and risk mitigation. "Dealing with cyberthreats in isolation is not enough, so Canada is committed to working together with other countries to ensure that we have a common approach and thus are able to prevent, monitor and respond to them," she said. In particular, Loten reaffirmed the commitment of the Canadian government to support national efforts of the countries of the hemisphere in the fight against crime and cyber terrorism through the CICTE of the OAS. "OAS/CICTE has been instrumental in these efforts and we believe that its work is key to continue providing the technical expertise needed by countries in the region, and to continue fostering collaboration and exchange and identifying innovative ways to face these complex challenges," she added.

For his part, the Executive Secretary of the OAS/CICTE, Neil Klopfenstein, said that the meeting is "an example of transregional cooperation and one of the main elements of the training initiatives developed by CICTE." He also encouraged participants to expand their network of interpersonal collaboration and build new ties of partnership and trust.

The OAS/CICTE official explained that the course is for staff from the OAS member countries working in the field of Computer Security Incident Response and who wish to gain a good grounding in the main aspects of working in an incident handling and response team specialized in the field.

The course, financially supported by Canada, is based on the "TRANSITS" methodology, developed by Terena, an organization dedicated to the development and progress of Internet technologies, that brings together managers, technical specialists and other community research networks to promote the exchange of knowledge and experience in the area of research and education networks. Instruction was given by Melanie Rieback from Radically Open Security, and Jean-Phillip Velders from the University of Amsterdam.

A gallery of photos of the event is available here.

For more information, please visit the OAS Website at

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