Intervention by Mr. Md. Rafiqul Alam Molla, Counsellor at the 6th Substantive Session of the Open-Ended Working Group on security of and in the use of information and communications technologies 2021-2025 (OEWG), at CR-3, UNHQs, 12 December 2023

Thank you, Mr. Chair.

Bangladesh emphasizes the shared responsibility of all nations in maintaining international peace and security within the cyber domain. As the use of new and emerging technologies continues to increase, so do the vulnerabilities. In this context, establishing clear and agreed-upon norms serves as a crucial normative framework for ensuring stability and security in the utilization of ICTs.

We believe that states should prioritize the implementation of the existing 11 Rules, Norms, and Principles as the fundamental foundation for responsible state behavior in cyberspace.

The most effective approach to translating these norms into concrete action lies in collective efforts between states. This collaborative endeavor should focus on providing guidance on the interpretation and implementation of these principles, ensuring their effective application in the evolving cyber landscape. To that end, Bangladesh emphasizes that all states should have the common and comprehensive understanding on these norms.

In pursuit of this shared understanding, we need to address the Skill Gap as a matter of priority.

To answer your guiding question, on additional norms, my delegation underscores the importance of implementing existing norms and stresses that these norms, rules, and principles should be regarded as an ongoing process, requiring continuous evaluation, updating, and recalibration, rather than a one-time endeavor.

We are of the view that the rapid advancement of AI and other emerging technologies introduces new complexities for responsible state behavior in ICTs. Norms in this domain are still evolving and require further definition. Thus, the OEWG may wish to articulate clear principles for their responsible use, encompassing transparency, accountability, safety, and non-discrimination.

Simultaneously, establishing a robust framework for attributing cyberattacks remains a challenge. International consensus on criteria for evidence, information sharing protocols, and mechanisms for state accountability is crucial. The current lack of transparency in attribution undermines confidence-building, risking miscalculations and escalation. Both aspects underscore the need for comprehensive norms in cyberspace.

Mr. Chair,

In addressing the question of support for developing and small states to enhance the protection of critical infrastructure (CI) and critical information infrastructure (CII) from ICT threats, Bangladesh underscores the significance of fundamental yet practical measures. These include fostering information sharing and facilitating the exchange of knowledge, experience, and expertise. These actions are deemed basic, yet their simplicity and effectiveness make them readily implementable and valuable in strengthening cybersecurity capabilities for nations in need.

Mr. Chair, my delegation highlighted yesterday that the Supply chain attacks are becoming increasingly common, targeting critical infrastructure through vulnerabilities in software and hardware. Therefore, we reiterate that the OEWG should consider potential strategies for enhancing software supply chain security and promoting responsible vulnerability disclosure practices. Many delegations echoed the same in this morning.

Mr. Chair, to conclude, I am happy to share that like few other countries, Bangladesh too has enacted its new Cyber Security Act 2023 in September replacing its Digital Security Act 2018.

I thank you.