King Willem-Alexander visits The Hague Security Delta

Educating new talent in the field of cybersecurity, a security robot that can conduct surveillance without human intervention, and the findings of research about how society can be made less vulnerable to cyber-attacks: a work visit that King Willem-Alexander made to The Hague Security Delta (HSD) on 23 March addressed the latest innovations in the field of security. HSD is a network of companies, government agencies and knowledge institutions (including The Hague University of Applied Sciences) that focuses on the development of knowledge in the field of security.

At the very heart of The Hague Security Delta is the HSD Campus: the national innovation centre for security in The Hague. Located here are 50 of the more than 250 HSD partners that include government agencies, knowledge institutions, start-ups and businesses ranging from SMEs to large corporate organisations. Leonard Geluk, President of the Executive Board of The Hague University of Applied Sciences, is also a member of the HSD.

Innovations aimed at greater security

King Willem-Alexander talked with representatives of these organisations and members of the HSD Board. Included as one of the many topics was the educating of future cybersecurity professionals. The Cyber Security Academy, initiated by The Hague University of Applied Sciences, Leiden University and the Delft University of Technology, offers an executive master’s degree programme in Cyber Security. Important aspects of this programme are the need for a swift response to new developments and a careful monitoring of the balance between security and privacy.

During his visit, the King also became acquainted with some of the latest innovations in cybersecurity. One of these was SAM, the security robot who can conduct surveillance all on his own. Thanks to investments made by HSD and its partners, this robot is used in the Port of Rotterdam where confronting both physical and digital threats is of major importance. Another innovation on parade was Sweetie 2.0, a chat robot armed with artificial intelligence used to tackle live-stream child sexual abuse, also known as webcam sex tourism. The findings generated by the Nationaal Cyber Testbed (national cybertesting centre) were also addressed in detail. This is a research project that studies the results of technological innovations and the digitising of society. As the possibilities offered by digitising, the Internet of Things, and Smart Cities grow, so, too, does our vulnerability to being hacked. The Municipality of The Hague and KPN were the first to become affiliated with the development of this testing centre.