PhD candidate at the University of Brasilia (UnB) International Relations Institute
Eduardo Izycki worked for 12 years for the Brazilian Federal Government during the Risk and Threat Assessment for Mega Events in Brazil (Rio+20, 2014 World Cup, and 2016 Olympics). Afterwards, he worked at the Brazilian Critical Infrastructure Protection Program.
Eduardo is currently a Chevening Alumnus at King’s College London, and he is also a PhD candidate at the University of Brasilia (UnB) International Relations Institute.
Over the last decade several incidents of claimed state-executed or state-sponsored cyber offensive actions were heavily publicized. That has made such an impact on the public opinion and political debates that there is widespread belief that a cyber arms race is on course. Meanwhile, few researchers focused on Latin America. As if Latin America were Atlantis – the Greek mythology lost continent – a peaceful and hidden piece of cyberspace. Despite occasionally making the headlines with cybercriminal and hacktivist actions, there is a sense that Latin American countries do not engage in state sponsored actions. This presentation aims to expand the current knowledge over cyber offensive capabilities among Latin American countries and raise awareness among its citizens. Through the analysis of technical reports from private vendors and independent researchers this presentation will address two cases of state sponsored actions (Mexico and Panama), eleven countries purchase of cyber offensive capabilities to act outside their borders in cyberspace (Brazil, Chile, Colombia, Ecuador, Honduras, Guatemala, Mexico, Panama, Paraguay and Venezuela) and four APT campaigns that had Latin American countries as their primary targets (PackRat, El Machete, Sowbug, and Blind Eagle/APT-C-36). As a conclusion, if Latin America is a lost continent in cyberspace, it is not as peaceful as its mythological counterpart. Latin American countries are engaging in cyber offensive actions and citizens as well as Nation-States should be aware of it.