In the first days after the Hamas attacks, there were many calls for help. Israel's start-up scene has been under severe pressure. After the brutal attacks by the terrorists from the Gaza Strip with 1400,200 dead and 100 hostages, thousands of young employees were drafted into military service almost overnight. Companies also had to fear for the financing of their work. Within days, the state had an initial bailout fund of $<> million on the table. The private sector followed suit. It provided a quarter of a billion.
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"Now the country is receiving massive amounts of funding," says Aviv Zeevi Balasiano, vice-president of the Innovation Authority. These are not donations, but well-calculated investments. "But they are also intended to show the willingness to help that we are currently receiving from Germany, the United States and other parts of the world." U.S. chipmaker Nvidia is giving every employee in Israel a tidy bonus on their next salary to donate as they see fit. Intel will pay an additional $12,000 to all 5000,900 workers in Israel. German corporations are also following suit. The software company SAP employs 1000 people in Israel. They receive additional payments of up to the equivalent of almost <> euros per family member. "We receive a lot of help," says Zeevi.
War in cyberspace
He is connected via video from Tel Aviv to a virtual conference of the Chemnitz Chamber of Commerce and Industry. The head of the International Division, Alexa von Künsberg, invited to the "Update Israel". After all, the Saxons have been maintaining close cooperation with various Israeli partners for years: companies and universities, research institutes and authorities. It's about biotech, agriculture and Industry 4.0. No wonder: With 9000,<> high-tech companies, Israel has the third-largest tech hub in the world – and German corporations are also keeping a close eye on it.
The Schwarz Group was one of Europe's major retailers to buy Israel's XM Cyber Ltd. in 2021. Noam Erez, founder and head of the cybersecurity specialist, had launched his company with colleagues after a stellar career in Israeli intelligence. He sold them to Germany without really relinquishing control. "We had actually wanted Schwarz as a customer. Then they bought us. And that was a good thing – for both of us." After all, German companies are at the top of data hackers' attack lists.
The current IT situation report of the German Federal Office for Information Security (BSI) has already caused quite a stir. Every day, the office registers 250,000 new variants of malware, 21,000 systems infected with malware and 70 new security vulnerabilities in the systems, among other things. Against this background, the president of the Berlin digital association Bitkom stated at the beginning of November: "Every second company in Germany now agrees with the statement that a successful cyber attack could threaten its existence. At the same time, almost two-thirds expect to become the target of such attacks in the next twelve months. In the past twelve months, companies in Germany have suffered 206 billion euros in damage as a result of white-collar crime, of which around 150 billion euros have been caused by cyberattacks."