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US Homeland Security Advisor Keenly Interested in Beer-Sheva’s Cyber Security Ecosystem

Jul. 05, 2017
US cyber terror expert visit.jpg

Above left to right: US NSC Cybersecurity coordinator Robert E. Joyce, BGU VP and Dean of R&D Prof. Dan Blumberg, Dell-EMC Beer-Sheva Center of Excellence Site Leader Maya Hofman Levy, and Thomas Patrick Bossert, Assistant to the President of the United States for Homeland Security and Counterterrorism. (Courtesy)


Thomas Patrick Bossert, Assistant to the President of the United States for Homeland Security and Counterterrorism visited Ben-Gurion University of the Negev and its Advanced Technologies Park last week to learn more about how the unique cyber-security ecosystem is developing. 

Bossert is President Trump’s senior homeland security advisor. 

BGU VP and Dean of R&D Prof. Dan Blumberg explained that the ecosystem was a unique collaboration among four different entities: academia (BGU), industry (companies at the hi-tech park and on campus), the IDF (elite technology units) and the government (the national CERT). 

“This is a combination of scientific capabilities and everyone’s willingness to cooperate. It is only in Beer-Sheva that rivals like Dell-EMC, IBM, Leidos, and Deutsche Telekom work together on joint projects rather than just compete,” he said.

“BGU is the anchor that enables the ecosystem to thrive. Our stellar faculty and students produce outstanding research. We have developed longstanding fruitful collaborations with industry and the government,” he added. 

The visit was organized by CyberSpark, a non-profit organization set up to promote the ecosystem and plan its expansion. Bossert also met with CyberSpark CEO Roni Zehavi, Maya Hofman-Levy, Uriya Stern, and Jay Alexander from Dell-EMC’s Beer-Sheva Center of Excellence, Shay Saffer from PayPal’s Center of Excellence and BGU’s Cyber Security Research Center’s Dr. Mordechai Guri. 

Bossert and his colleagues also toured the Deutsche Telekom Innovation Labs@BGU, Deutsche Telekom’s only R&D center outside of Germany, which is staffed by BGU students and faculty. 

Bossert was accompanied by Robert E. Joyce, NSC Cybersecurity coordinator, Michael Paul Sellitto, NSC Director for Cybersecurity Policy, Andrew Hart Teitelbaum, his Special Assistant and Darren Turner and Daniel Gage from the US Embassy.