An unforgettable experience. That’s the simplest expression that could summarize this first visit to Lisbon for our team.

Some of us attempted to book a trip for the next year before leaving the place. The 2019 edition ended as a record-breaker with 70,469 participants from 163 countries with a strong female attendance of 46.3% — as indicated by organizers. Before you can hear how much fun we had, let’s review key themes from this year’s event:

  • While still in con­struc­tion, 5G is already brand­ed as a new chap­ter for infor­ma­tion tech­nol­o­gy because of the speed it brings to data transfer
  • WeWork’s IPO shake-up brought about a renewed dis­cus­sion about start­up finan­cial accountability
  • Edward Snow­den and Brit­tany Kaiser (ex Cam­bridge Ana­lyt­i­ca) push for Big Tech reg­u­la­tions that would lim­it data exploita­tion in the fields of democ­ra­cy med­dling and dig­i­tal advertising
  • Web Sum­mit co-founder Pad­dy Cos­grave notices poten­tial in tech for auto­mo­tive with a sig­nif­i­cant num­ber of star­tups atten­dants lean­ing in that direction
  • Sam­sung is con­fi­dent that the adap­ta­tion of voice assis­tant devices will triple by 2023 into 8 bil­lion globally

Piotr Bardadyn, Head of Business at Titans24

It was an intense week to maneu­ver around 70 thou­sand peo­ple! For me as a busi­ness devel­op­er who always looks to con­nect, it was a sol­id chal­lenge to pick the right con­ver­sa­tion part­ner. I was aim­ing to reach par­tic­i­pants con­scious about dig­i­tal secu­ri­ty threats affect­ing the SMB mar­ket. My goal was to rep­re­sent Titans24 — a secu­ri­ty plat­form that coun­ters such threats, used by e‑commerce com­pa­nies and oth­er ven­tures that must pro­tect their online reputation.

A report from Marsh states that data secu­ri­ty is the fourth great­est chal­lenge to busi­ness­es right next to cli­mate cat­a­stro­phes. This point allowed me to veirfy investors and busi­ness part­ners in terms of a poten­tial part­ner­ship. Speak­ing with data (130.000 web ser­vices hacked dai­ly!), I observed their respons­es in our con­ver­sa­tions. If I were deal­ing with a pro­fes­sion­al from the dig­i­tal secu­ri­ty indus­try, our talk would glide smooth­ly into tech­ni­cal­i­ties, where I would guide them through Titants24 client pan­el. There, they would access the test envi­ron­ment that allows for secure data work in a con­tainer­ized envi­ron­ment based on CI/CD-Git­Flow method­ol­o­gy. Togeth­er, we’d assess the scale and vol­ume of cyber attacks mon­i­tored by the sys­tem as shown on visu­al charts.

With oth­er con­ver­sa­tion­al part­ners, for whom the aver­age cyber­se­cu­ri­ty dam­age costs remained an abstract fig­ure, I’d use this exam­ple. “Can you imag­ine work­ing with a com­pa­ny with no bank account?” — I’d ask. It seems an obvi­ous assump­tion that there has to be one, just as where we expect a busi­ness to have that web page, regard­less of the pro­fes­sion (may it be den­tistry or vul­can­iza­tion). If it’s a stan­dard in any devel­oped coun­try to lock the front door, then why do we neglect the secu­ri­ty of our web ser­vices that keep the mon­ey flowing?

It dawned on me that as the exchange about SME data cyber­se­cu­ri­ty moved on, the mat­ter would peak to *Super impor­tant!*. 80% of entre­pre­neurs employs stan­dard­ized tech­nolo­gies for web ser­vices (such as Word­Press) which need the utmost atten­tion as they’re attacked 90% of the time.

I returned from Lis­bon with renewed con­fi­dence, as I have seen that Titans24’s argu­ments help us enroll new mem­bers to a work group that we call The Guardians of the Cyber­galaxy (#Guardian­sOfT­he­Cy­ber­galaxy). Any­one who finds dig­i­tal cyber­se­cu­ri­ty cru­cial can be a Guardian. We passed around over 500 stick­ers as emblems of their new com­mit­ment to the secu­ri­ty of their own busi­ness and the rede­fined focus on mak­ing their WWW a space of secure com­mu­ni­ca­tion, true infor­ma­tion, and a hub for valu­able part­ner­ships in work and life.

Mateusz Romanow, CEO Titans24

These were 4 days of pure excite­ment with so many suc­cess­ful pro­fes­sion­als to see. I had to focus on what I shouldn’t skip because of the astrono­mus scale of the Web Sum­mit. While sit­ting in the audi­to­ri­um over­look­ing thou­sands of peo­ple, I realised how much I appre­ci­ate the con­fer­ence as a strong learn­ing expe­ri­ence. I tried to grasp every word com­ing my way from all the pan­els that I attend­ed to imag­ine how Titans24 can syn­er­gize with this world of estab­lished and undis­cov­ered tech­nol­o­gy. Cyber­se­cu­ri­ty was an ever present theme at the Sum­mit. No that it had that much more atten­tion than the imple­men­ta­tion of 5G, AI, and big tech pri­va­cy pol­i­cy. Pass­ing many stands on my way to anoth­er rushed meet­ing, I had seen hun­dreds of com­pa­nies on dis­play that per­haps need­ed to imple­ment a web ser­vices secu­ri­ty plat­form like Titans24, but they didn’t know I yet. In my down­time, it was my mis­sion to dis­cov­er how they’d go about it. Most of the time, I’d focus my efforts on going from the Board lev­el down, with my eyes on CEOs of any prod­uct-fit com­pa­nies I could spot. 

My Web Sum­mit race against the clock brought about 300 investor leads. With my grate­ful­ness of the many expe­ri­ences that came to me there, I’m now search­ing for the first major stake­hold­er that will help us with our mis­sion of pro­vid­ing afford­able cyber­se­cu­ri­ty to the world.

Credits for photos: https://www.flickr.com/photos/websummit Web Summit 2019 (CC BY 2.0)