Ministry of Foreign Affairs of the Russian Federation

Sergey Lavrov,
Minister of Foreign Affairs of the Russian Federation

I welcome the organizers and participants of the XII International IT Forum in Khanty-Mansiysk.

The influence of information and communication technologies on scientific and technological progress, on the development of the world economy, as well as on modern society is growing rapidly. The widespread use of ICT improves the quality and standard of living of citizens.

Unfortunately, at the same time, challenges are growing in number in the digital environment that can provoke, among other things, an armed conflict. Cybercrime severely damages the critical infrastructure of government agencies and businesses. We are deeply concerned that such platforms as the Internet, social networks and instant messengers are used to manipulate public opinion and put pressure on government bodies. This jeopardizes democratic values, human rights and freedoms.

In this regard, we feel the need to develop joint measures to ensure the security of cyberspace and to overcome the numerous challenges that arise there. These tasks can be only effectively solved on the basis of universal agreements reached through the UN. It is also important to use the potential of the expert community and business circles to the maximum.

A useful contribution to common efforts is being made by the Forum in Khanty-Mansiysk, which has established itself as a demanded platform for professional discussion of issues in the field of ICT. The key to success is the authoritative composition of participants from Russia and foreign countries. There are representatives of the BRICS and SCO countries, within the framework of which they have repeatedly reaffirmed the commonality of their approaches to the IIB.

I am convinced that your current meeting will be held in a traditionally constructive manner, will allow you to exchange best practices, establish mutually beneficial contacts, and launch joint initiatives. I wish you successful work and all the best.

Moscow, 15 June 2021

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