Unfortunately we have had to postpone the Parliament & Internet Conference until the new year following the dissolution of Parliament.

The new date will be set on Parliament return.

The Conference is jointly hosted by Vicky Ford MP and Alan Mak MP.

The theme of the Conference is 'Digital Policy Agenda for Global Britain'.

Keynote speakers: Roger Taylor, Chair, Centre for Data Ethics

Panel session 1 

Working together to build and deliver world class communications infrastructure

Fast, reliable connectivity is the foundation of a modern digital economy and society. The UK is currently witnessing a revolution in its communications infrastructure, with a national upgrade supported by a wide range of operators entering the market on a regional and local basis. Gigabit-capable broadband will be available to millions more homes in the coming years, and Government itself is committed to accelerating nationwide rollout.

Delivering on this vision will require considerable investment from industry and a coordinated cross-Whitehall strategy to ensure that fibre deployment is appropriately facilitated and prioritised. This includes a coherent attitude across Government to reducing barriers such as wayleaves, mandating fibre to new builds and reducing business rates.

Government has set up a barrier busting unit with targeted plans to address specific challenges, alongside plans for a joined up national infrastructure strategy. In addition, significant public funding is being committed to upgrade rural and hard to reach areas. Much of this work is ongoing, and this panel will discuss this progress, whether it is enough and how far we can be considered ‘on track’ to deliver a full fibre future.

Speakers: Kim Mears, Openreach; Matthew Fell, CBI; James Heath, DCMS, Andrew Glover, ISPA

 

Panel session 2 

Regulating the digital world of the future

In the wake of the publication of the Online Harms White Paper in April and accompanying consultation, there has been intense debate in the UK about how to best tackle the wide range of online harms, both legal and illegal, encountered by Internet users on a daily basis. In proposing the introduction of a statutory ‘duty of care’, the White Paper places an onus on Internet companies of various kinds to take more responsibility for the content on their platforms and to tackle harm cased by activity on their services. In so doing, the White Paper raises issues about where liability should lie, what enforcement measures should be at the disposal of regulators and how to ensure that appropriate mechanisms exist to challenge decisions about content.

Navigating these issues and establishing an effective enforcement framework, whilst maintaining an environment conducive to innovation and freedom of expression, presents a significant challenge to policy-makers the world over. As a country at the forefront of online harm mitigation, other Governments will be watching developments in the UK closely as we enter a new regulatory phase. This panel will discuss the strengths and weaknesses of the proposed approach and the role of industry in making the Internet a safer place.

Speakers: Adam Kinsley, Sky; Vinous Aly, techUK; Richard Wronka, Ofcom; Partner, Schillings

 

Panel session 3 

Securing networks and adapting to emerging cyber threats 

The significant benefits that digital innovation can deliver can only be realised if users are able to rely on the security of networks. As cyber threats continue to emerge and develop, it is vital that UK cyber security keeps pace. Cyber security has risen up policymakers’ agenda and this year alone has seen a strengthening of the regulatory framework through new planned security requirements, and a new National Cyber Security Strategy being developed alongside a National Cyber Skills Strategy, with the aim of ensuring that UK networks and users are protected and equipped to operate securely online.

Yet some of the biggest policy challenges are still being heavily debated: from managing security risks in our infrastructure to the use encryption and the role of individuals in protecting themselves. This panel will discuss what the current cyber threat landscape looks like, what measures are being undertaken by industry to improve cyber security and whether Government action is sufficient to meet the threats.

Speakers: Nihal Newman, Ofcom; Sneha Dawda, RUSI; Raytheon; NCSC; Cyber team DCMS

 

The Conference is by invitation only, please contact team@parliamentandinternet.org.uk for more information.