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Agreement for cybersecurity

Jastrzębska Spółka Węglowa, Silesian University of Technology and KOMAG Institute of Mining Technology signed an agreement on cooperation in the area of cybersecurity. Cybersecurity is one of the most important contemporary challenges of the mining industry, which has gained particular importance in the face of the armed conflict in Ukraine. Building and developing information and communication security at Jastrzębska Spółka Węglowa has been a priority for years.

photo: Mateusz Paszek

- Jastrzębska Spółka Węglowa successfully implements and uses the latest technologies. Digital transformation of the industry allows us to effectively optimize, manage, but also monitor and ensure the safety of coking coal mining and processing processes, becoming an indispensable tool for the miner. Unfortunately, this comes with a host of cyber threats, the scale of which is further compounded by the fact that in the value chain from coking coal to steel our company is driving the country's energy transition. We are fully aware of the scale of the challenges we face, which is why the platform we are developing for cooperation with the research centers in the field of cybersecurity is so important for us. It will combine the scientific potential of the Silesian University of Technology with the research and development competencies of KOMAG and the space for practical exploration in the Company's plants. What we have done so far separately, we can do together more effectively - said Tomasz Cudny, President of the Management Board of JSW S.A. - The cooperation has also an educational aspect. It will allow JSW to participate in the education of university students, future specialists in cybersecurity, who will later join the staff of our Company - added the President of JSW.

The patron of the cybersecurity cooperation is the Ministry of State Assets. The letter of intent was signed by the signatories of the agreement in the presence of Piotr Pyzik, Undersecretary of State in the Ministry of State Assets, Government Representative for Transformation of Energy Companies and Coal Mining.

- We always support projects that integrate the world of science with the world of industry, especially when the cooperation concerns such strategic issues as cybersecurity. The importance of this pioneering project goes far beyond mining and also applies to the economic transformation of Silesia and the country's energy security - emphasized Piotr Pyzik, Government Representative for Transformation of Energy Companies and Coal Mining.

JSW S.A.'s cooperation with the Silesian University of Technology and ITG Komag will involve the education of university students, as well as the implementation and support of innovative projects and research programs in the field of cybersecurity of industrial systems. No less important is the dissemination of their results, as well as active training of JSW staff in this area.

- Cyber attacks are real threats. Several years ago in the Czech Republic, they brought mining to a halt at several mines there. It's not just a question of data being stolen, but of serious economic losses and, above all, the safety of mining crews. We need a comprehensive approach to ICT security, from broad-based prevention and training to a comprehensive cybersecurity system that must be continually upgraded to effectively prevent all potential cyber threats at all times. We have the scientific staff to accomplish this and will be developing our specialized laboratory. Our greatest asset is years of fruitful cooperation and numerous projects completed with both the University of Technology and Jastrzębska Spółka Węglowa - said Dariusz Prostański, Ph.D., Director of ITG Komag.

An important part of the agreement is the hands-on education of future cybersecurity specialists. The project involves the organization of internships and apprenticeships for university students, as well as participation of engineers - practitioners and employees of JSW in academic classes.

- Practice is a very important part of educating future cybersecurity professionals. In this way, students can undertake, not only in theory, the challenges and problems they will be solving in their future workplace - noted Professor Franciszek Plewa, Dean of the Faculty of Mining, Engineering, Safety and Industrial Automation, Silesian University of Technology.

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