New effort will help cities with cybersecurity (and many really need the help)

Wed, 2015-01-21 06:00 -- SCC Staff

A recent survey revealed only about a third of all cities have a robust, citywide cybersecurity policy. Another third (roughly) have policies on a department-by-department basis. And another third no policies at all.

No cybersecurity policies whatsoever? [Sound of man's jaw hitting the floor.] 

Happily, solutions abound. For one thing, nonprofits such as Council Advisor 100 Resilient Cities are making it their business to help cities with cybersecurity (and other issues as well). For another, major IT companies like Council Lead Partner Microsoft have deep expertise and security-savvy architectures.

Indeed, 100RC and Microsoft are now joining forces to make cybersecurity resources more readily available, as you'll read below. As the partnership bears fruit, we will alert you here. In the meantime, be sure to visit the Council's Security and Privacy Channel for the latest cybersecurity news you can use. – Jesse Berst

100 Resilient Cities and Microsoft are joining forces to help cities develop cybersecurity strategies and combat online threats. As part of the agreement, Microsoft is joining 100RC’s Platform Partners network – a group of specialized organizations from the public, private and nonprofit sectors that provide critical tools and services for cities – from big data and analytics to resilient land use planning and new financing options.

In particular Microsoft will provide best practices and resources designed to help cities develop cybersecurity strategies, including workshops featuring cybersecurity experts.

"As governments become increasingly reliant on digital communications and commerce, cybersecurity has emerged as a top priority for our cities," said Michael Berkowitz, 100RC’s president. "By partnering with an industry leader such as Microsoft, we are helping our cities build resilience so they can serve their citizens better in both good times and bad, and more ably address the challenges they face in a 21st century world."

With its CityNext initiative, Microsoft is heavily involved in helping cities embrace digital technologies to increase productivity and efficiency. As Rob Bernard, the company's chief environmental and cities strategist sees it, embracing future technology goes hand in hand with cybersecurity.

"With Microsoft CityNext, we’re committed to equipping cities with the world’s premiere cybersecurity technology and helping city leaders identify vulnerabilities and plan against cyber threats," Bernard said. "Partnering with 100RC will give us an opportunity to continue and expand that effort, allowing more cities to embrace new technology solutions with confidence."


Jesse Berst is the founding Chairman of the Smart Cities Council. Click to learn about the benefits you receive when you join the Council for free. Follow @Jesse_Berst and connect on LinkedIn.

More on cybersecurity from Microsoft…
Developing a City Strategy for Cybersecurity: A 7-Step Guide for Local Governments