Government and Policy

Disrupt crypto payment systems & boost public-private collaborations: WEF authors testify in ransomware hearing

The great reset goes to Washington: perspective

WEF contributors ransomware congress
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World Economic Forum Agenda authors call on Congress to boost public-private collaborations and to disrupt the cryptocurrency payment system during a hearing on ransomware.

Messaging mirroring the World Economic Forum’s (WEF) great reset agenda (i.e. public-private cooperation) has made its way to the United States Congress in recent days, with several witnesses calling for the globalist think tank’s policies with regards to digital identity and ransomware.

Last week, the House Financial Services Committee heard testimony from WEF contributor Jeremy Grant, who pushed for public-private collaborations on the subject of digital identity.

Today, three World Economic Forum Agenda authors testified before the House Committee on Energy and Commerce on the subject of ransomware, with similar messaging.

Together, witnesses echoed some of the key takeaways from the WEF-backed Cyber Polygon cyber pandemic simulation exercise, primarily:

  • A push for public-private collaborations 
  • A desire to disrupt cryptocurrency payment systems

It doesn’t make a difference if the challenge is ransomware, digital identity, cybersecurity, climate change, or COVID-19, the solution coming from WEF contributors is always the same — more “public-private collaborations” — a closer merger of corporate and state power.

Today’s hearing was no different, with all three WEF authors repeating the globalist public-private collaboration agenda in lock step unison.

Testifying in today’s hearing were:

  • Kemba Walden: WEF contributor and Assistant General Counsel at Microsoft
  • Robert Lee: WEF contributor and CEO at Dragos
  • Philip Reiner: WEF contributor and CEO at the Institute for Security and Technology
  • Dr. Christian Dameff: Medical Director of Cybersecurity at UC San Diego Health
  • Charles Carmakal: Senior Vice President and Chief Technical Officer at FireEye-Mandiant

WEF contributor Kemba Walden concluded her written testimony with an entire page dedicated to “The importance of Public – Private Partnerships” for combatting ransomware.

Kemba Walden
Kemba Walden

“Government has law enforcement and intelligence resources that the private sector cannot match; the private sector has access to data and technological resources that governments cannot match” — Kemba Walden

“Just as committing ransomware attacks requires collective effort, countering ransomware attacks needs the same focus and global coordination,” Walden submitted.

“Efforts to date illustrate that a collaborative multi-stakeholder approach – sharing actionable information and leveraging the combined capabilities of the private sector and the government – yields the best opportunity to disrupt cybercrime quickly and at scale,” she added.

In her opening statement, Walden concluded, “Government has law enforcement and intelligence resources that the private sector cannot match; the private sector has access to data and technological resources that governments cannot match.

“We must work together to find innovative solutions.”

Philip Reiner, ransomware
Philip Reiner

“Ransomware has become too large of a threat for any one entity to address, and the scale and magnitude of this challenge urgently demands coordinated global action” — Philip Reiner

Likewise, WEF contributor Philip Reiner testified that public-private collaborations were beneficial in fighting ransomware.

“Ransomware has become too large of a threat for any one entity to address, and the scale and magnitude of this challenge urgently demands coordinated global action.”

Praising the efforts of public-private collaborations, Reiner added, “The public-private effort to disrupt the Emotet infrastructure earlier this year was an immense success in its breadth and creativity.”

Robert Lee, ransomware
Robert Lee

“To defend against ransomware, we must first find a way to harmonize the roles and responsibilities of the private sector with government and the government’s need to be aware of critical breaches” — Robert Lee

WEF contributor Robert Lee shared some of the same sentiments as the other WEF authors.

“To defend against ransomware, we must first find a way to harmonize the roles and responsibilities of the private sector with government and the government’s need to be aware of critical breaches,” Lee submitted.

“Critical infrastructure companies stand ready to do the right thing and partner with government fully,” he added.

The World Economic Forum bills itself as “the international organization for public-private cooperation.”

In today’s hearing, all three witnesses with ties to the WEF promoted the globalist agenda for public-private cooperation.

Disrupting cryptocurrencies was a major theme at the WEF-backed Cyber Polygon 2021, and today, both Walden and Reiner repeated similar messaging before Congress.

“Disrupting the payment distribution system will require a global strategy” — Kemba Walden

In her written testimony, Walden took aim at cryptocurrency as being part of a payment distribution system that needed to be disrupted.

“Regardless of where ransomware is deployed, typically the threat actors will demand payment via crypto currency. Though the underlying blockchain technology facilitates transparent cryptocurrency flows, the owners of wallets remain pseudonymous.”

“Because the payment distribution system and the intermediaries that support the money flow ranges across international borders, disrupting the payment distribution system will require a global strategy,” she added.

Walden concluded, once again, that public-private collaborations were required to take on the role of cryptocurrencies in ransomware.

“The private sector through civil litigation, and the government through criminal seizure, regulatory enforcement, and international collaboration can take coordinated action to disrupt these weak points in the payment process.”

“Ransomware can be disrupted when threat actors are pushed out of the business […] This includes increased targeting of […] the cryptocurrency payment process they rely on for funds” — Philip Reiner

Walden’s “disrupting the payment distribution system” talking point was similar to one of her fellow WEF contributors and witnesses.

Reiner testified that the government should disrupt the cryptocurrency payment process with his recommendation: “Disrupt the ransomware business model and decrease criminal profits.”

“Ransomware can be disrupted when threat actors are pushed out of the business and the appeal to new threat actors is reduced.

“This includes increased targeting of the criminals themselves, their technical infrastructure, and the cryptocurrency payment process they rely on for funds,” he added.

Klaus Schwab, Cyber Polygon
Klaus Schwab

“[Ransomware] highlights the need for a structured multi-stakeholder, multi-lateral approach to secure our society against them” — Klaus Schwab, Cyber Polygon 2021

The World Economic Forum and partners’ annual Cyber Polygon cybersecurity training exercise took place on July 9, 2021 with several key trends emerging that are likely to shape global policymaking for years to come.

Discussions coming out of Cyber Polygon 2021 concluded with the desire to immunize the internet, demonize cryptocurrencies, and prop-up centralized systems of governance through a closer merger of corporations and states (public-private partnerships).

Giving the welcoming remarks at Cyber Polygon this year, WEF Founder and Executive Chairman Klaus Schwab warned that a lack of cybersecurity had become a “clear and immediate danger to our society worldwide.”

Schwab spoke to the ransomware threat specifically, stating:

“We have seen in the past few months, for example, ransomware attacks targeting hospitals, critical infrastructure, school systems, the power grid, and many other essential services.”

“Ransomware attacks are complex, and criminal enterprises are increasing their scale and impact. This highlights the need for a structured multi-stakeholder, multi-lateral approach to secure our society against them,” he added.

Jen Psaki
Jen Psaki

We’re flagging problematic posts for Facebook that spread disinformation” — White House Press Secretary Jen Psaki, July, 2021

The WEF’s globalist ideology of public-private collaborations continues to make its way into Congress, with WEF authors invited to give policy recommendations to the United States Government.

But can corporate business models really be compatible with a government’s responsibilities to its people?

Public and private collaborations are nothing new, and today’s witnesses brought up many good points about how effective these partnerships can be in combating ransomware (i.e. playing off each other’s strengths).

But if the solution to any given problem is more and more public and private collaboration, will we eventually see a complete merger of corporate and state power?

The White House is already “flagging problematic posts for Facebook” that spread what the administration has deemed “disinformation,” despite the government’s duty to not engage in censorship and to uphold the freedom of speech.

Is this the type of direction that public-private collaborations are really leading us down?

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Tim Hinchliffe
Tim Hinchliffe is the editor of The Sociable. His passions include writing about how technology impacts society and the parallels between Artificial Intelligence and Mythology. Previously, he was a reporter for the Ghanaian Chronicle in West Africa and an editor at Colombia Reports in South America. tim@sociable.co