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September 19, 2017

Big Data: A Twenty-first Century Arms Race

by Thomson Reuters

Today our society faces a range of unprecedented and increasingly sophisticated threats, whether in the form of cyber attacks, organised crime, drug trafficking, terrorism, money laundering, slavery and human trafficking, or corruption. But just as “bad actors” in all these activities become ever more skillful in using “big data” for ill intent, the explosion of data and our increasing ability to use the power of data science to analyse and link big data from disparate sources provide the potential means to counter these threats and realize big data as a tool for good.

Using both AI and human expertise, intelligence and law enforcement agencies as well as global financial institutions can now use technology to connect information from many sources to identify risk, mitigate these threats and identify and catch these bad actors. Equipping public authorities with the right powers and tools, and ensuring maximum cooperation and data sharing with the private sector, is an urgent imperative. But it raises difficult challenges. In particular, balancing the exploitation of data to fight crime with the need to protect the individual’s right to privacy is proving hard.

This event will discuss a series of papers brought together by the Atlantic Council and Thomson Reuters to examine how the big data revolution can help increase global security. The two panels will explore how, on the one hand the public sector and law enforcement can use big data to greater effect, and on the other how the private sector can use and share data to fight crime whilst respecting data protection requirements.


8:30-9:00 AM Registration & Breakfast
9:00-9:10 AM Welcoming Remarks

David Craig, President Financial & Risk, Thomson Reuters

Hugh Morris, Vice Chairman of Policy & Resources Committee, City of London Corporation

9:10-9:25 AM Keynote remarks

Ian Dyson, Commissioner of the City of London Police

9:25-9:45 AM Rapportuer Remarks – Report Overview and Main Outcomes

Mathew Burrows, Director, Foresight, Strategy, and Risks Initiative, Brent Scowcroft Center on International Security, Atlantic Council

9:45-10:45 AM: Panel I – Big Data: The Latest Tool in Fighting Crime

How are intelligence and law enforcement agencies using big data to help defend against criminal and terrorist threats, both domestic and foreign?

Rob Wainwright, Director, Europol

Phil Cotter, Managing Director, Risk, Thomson Reuters

Tom Neylan, Senior Policy Analyst, Financial Action Task Force (FATF)

Tatiana Tropina, Senior Researcher, Max Planck Institute for Foreign & International Crime


Axel Threlfall, Reuters, Editor at Large

10:45-11:00 AM Coffee Break

11:00 AM – 12:00 PM:  Panel II – Big Data: Mitigating Financial Crime Risk

How does the private sector manage to meet regulatory requirements, including those on anti money laundering, KYC and sanctions as well as those on data protection, whilst at the same time using big data effectively to ensure better compliance, improve monitoring and reporting, and prevent illicit financial flows?

Marc Fungard, Global Head of Intelligence & Analytics, Financial Crime Threat Mitigation, HSBC

Els de Brusser, Senior Researcher and Senior Lecturer at the Hague University Centre of Expertise Cybersecurity

Malcolm Wright, Head of AML and Transaction Monitoring, Thomson Reuters


Mathew Burrows, Director, Foresight, Strategy, and Risks Initiative, Brent Scowcroft Center on International Security, Atlantic Council

12:00-12:05 PM Closing Remarks

Bill Richardson, Director, Analysis, Thomson Reuters Special Services

12:05 PM Event Concludes

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