While new technologies have made our lives exponentially easier (the ability to buy groceries from the comfort of our living room, for example), unfortunately they’ve also made us exponentially more vulnerable. In recent years, hackers have stolen personal information even from large companies – everything from credit card numbers from Target to social security numbers from Blue Cross.
International airlines have begun to realize their vulnerabilities, with documented incidents of hacking at Warsaw’s Chopin airport and impacting flights with United and Malaysian Air earlier this year. To safeguard against such assaults, the International Air Transport Association (IATA) is taking proactive steps to protect the public – and it's turning to Israel for help.
Realizing it has a problem, IATA – which represents 260 airlines that are responsible for 83% of the world’s airline flights – has teamed up with Tel Aviv University to develop security systems in a variety of areas. With the agreement, IATA joined the companies’ forum of Tel Aviv University’s cyber center, and helped organized an international cyber-security conference that took place at Tel Aviv University last month. As part of the joint activity, IATA’s representatives, together with Ramot and Tel Aviv University’s international cyber center, will identify technologies and information that are relevant to the field of international flight.
Prof. Raanan Rein, vice president of Tel Aviv University, who signed the agreement on behalf of the university, said that it was another important step in the university’s links with international companies and industry.
“The agreement with such a large and important organization as IATA demonstrates Tel Aviv University’s leading role in the fields of entrepreneurship and innovation, as well as in research,” said Rein.