KDU confab focuses on potential threats from technology | Daily News


KDU confab focuses on potential threats from technology

Defence Secretary Gen. S.H.S. Kottegoda is accompanied by KDU Vice Chancellor Air Vice Marshal H.M.S.K.B. Kotakadeniya to the conference.
Defence Secretary Gen. S.H.S. Kottegoda is accompanied by KDU Vice Chancellor Air Vice Marshal H.M.S.K.B. Kotakadeniya to the conference.

The Kotelawala Defence University’s (KDU) 12th International Research Conference (IRC) under the theme ‘Challenges to Humankind in the Face of New Technologies’ commenced yesterday (11) and will conclude today at KDU in Ratmalana.

The conference featured pre-conference workshops on September 10 which aimed at offering focused and in-depth discussions on selected topics, plenary sessions, and technical sessions

This year the KDU has invited a world-renowned Sri Lankan scientist, Professor Abhaya Induruwa, to be the keynote speaker at the conference. Professor Induruwa is considered the father of the Internet in Sri Lanka.

Prominent personalities from Pakistan, Indonesia, Maldives, India, Malaysia, UAE, UK, New Zealand, Norway and Japan joined the conference.

Defence Secretary Gen. S.H.S. Kottegoda attended the event as the chief guest yesterday. The Navy Commander and Air Force Commander also accompanied the Defence Secretary and the dignitaries were welcomed by KDU Chancellor Admiral Daya Sandagiri and Vice Chancellor Air Vice Marshal H.M.S.K.B. Kotakadeniya. Delivering the opening speech at the commencement of the IRC, Gen. Kottegoda said technology will have a serious impact on national and international security. “In a world where technology has become power and where power is without wisdom, challenges to humankind are immense. Against that backdrop, I congratulate the KDU for selecting this year’s timely theme.”

He noted that technology has penetrated into every aspect of our lives. “Humankind has to continuously advance along with this never-ending technological revolution. However, it has brought upon serious consequences to human society. Therefore, as Sri Lankans we also have to face these challenges and find ways and means to cater to these future trends and threats. Governments are forced to renew their strategies and incorporate a vision of technology’s impact on the future.”

“Researchers involved in these designs have an obligation to come up with designs that saves lives and increase the global economy and at the same time, they have a responsibility to include moral and ethical aspects into their designs to stop disasters from happening,” the Defence Secretary said.

Meanwhile, delivering his keynote address, Professor Induruwa in his in-depth presentation, highlighted the various cyber crimes and threats and dangers users face. He spoke of emerging cyberspace challenges and the role of cyber intelligence. Pointing out that 3.6 billion people connect to the Internet on a daily basis, there is a ever present danger of personal information of users getting into the wrong hands.

He also noted that there are an estimated 83 million fake Facebook accounts which most hackers use to steal personal data of users.

In his timely topic, Prof. Induruwa explained how social media is being used for even vote rigging and mind twisting.

The IRC conference is a platform for prominent individuals from both military and civil backgrounds to disseminate their knowledge. KDUIRC is one of the biggest international conferences in the country and the only conference which brings together both military and civil researchers.

It is also the only conference where personnel from all three services in Sri Lanka, the Army, Navy and Air Force present their research findings.

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