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City’s cyber center reopens, gets started harnessing tech to aid COVID recovery

Days after Governor Andrew Cuomo launched an investigation into a cyber attack against Twitter, New York’s Cyber Center has re-opened.

Cuomo said the state’s Department of Financial Services — which regulates virtual currencies like bitcoin — will conduct the investigation” into hack which affected accounts belonging to former President Barack Obama, Joe Biden, Bill Gates, Elon Musk, among others.

“Foreign interference remains a grave threat to our democracy and New York will continue to lead the fight to protect our democracy and the integrity of our elections in any way we can.”

NYC International Cyber Center in SoHo re-opened as part of efforts to lead the economic recovery in the city’s startup and cyber sector.

Jerusalem Venture Partners’ founder and chairman Erel Margalit led a delegation of CEOs from leading JVP portfolio companies operating in New York, to reopen the Cyber Center which was established established by JVP earlier this year in partnership with the city with the aim of cementing the city’s standing as an international hub for cybersecurity.

The Center works to provide a base for start-ups, connecting them to investors, multinational companies, leading executives, entrepreneurs, and universities within the New York City ecosystem.

In reopening, the Cyber Center is operating according to stringent Safe Work Zone standards set by the State of New York, thus enabling its employees to have a safe work environment.

As witnessed during the COVID-19 pandemic, new technologies are desperately needed and play a vital role in protecting cities, banks, utilities, and healthcare systems, as well as democracies, the integrity of information, and the freedom of the individual.

The Center provides emerging businesses with a platform to develop such ground-breaking innovation in cybersecurity.

Erel Margalit is leading a delegation of CEOs from JVP portfolio companies to restart the cyber center. Photo by Shahar Azran

At a small event marking the Center’s reopening on Wednesday, Margalit commented, “Zoom is a wonderful tool, but in order to create real international business connections, one must be present in the world economic capital, New York. For the Israeli economy to prosper again, Israeli high-tech must prosper again – and our connection to New York is a critical piece of that puzzle.”

He added, “Our handling of the COVID-19 pandemic will be judged by how we as a society and a global economy recover, as much as how we face the medical challenges. The need to adapt to a new normal, and harness all new technologies and applications of innovations to create the best possible framework for our economic recovery must be addressed now.

“This is why I have come from Jerusalem to SoHo, together with leading CEOs from our technology companies, to work with our team on the ground, together with our partners in the NYCEDC, to explore and examine the best way to move forward.”

He stressed, “Job creation, employee and customer safety, and preparedness for any similar future occurrences must be top of our agenda, and play a part in all our thinking and planning. We have faith in New York. We know New York will be a shining light for the world.”

“It is not easy to leave your family at such a time, but we are here for our New York family of colleagues,” said Mark Gazit, CEO of Thetaray a company that provides a cybersecurity solution aimed at preventing money laundering. He explained, “The facility that JVP is providing here in SoHo, offers support to the whole ecosystem of and the reinforcement needed to restart and recover.”

In January, senior figures from New York City’s business, technology, investment, and diplomatic scenes attended the opening of the International NYC Cyber Center.

The Center is home to 28 companies, half of them Israeli, concentrating on business development and growth in the North American markets. The Center also houses an accelerator program for start-ups from around the world in the field of cyber, led by JVP and the NYEDC in cooperation with the city’s leading universities – Columbia, Cornell, NYU and CUNY – and a host of other strategic partners.

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