Telcos form alliance to defend enterprises against cyber attacks

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Etisalat, Singtel, SoftBank and Telefónica have signed an agreement to create the Global Telco Security Alliance to offer enterprises a comprehensive portfolio of cyber security services.

The alliance aims to be one of the world’s biggest cyber security providers, with more than 1.2 billion customers in over 60 countries across Asia Pacific, Europe, the Middle East and the Americas. Through their combined resources and capabilities, the group says it can protect enterprises against the rising cyber security risks as the information security environment becomes increasingly complex.

Through the alliance, members can achieve operational synergies and economies of scale that will eventually help lower costs for their customers. The group’s members operate 22 security operation centers (SOCs) and employ more than 5,000 cyber security experts.

To expand its global footprint, the alliance says it is open to bringing in new members over time.

Under the agreement, the group will share network intelligence on cyber threats and leverage their joint global reach, assets and cyber security capabilities to serve customers worldwide. Leveraging each member’s respective geographic footprint and expertise, the alliance is able to support each other’s customers, allowing them to respond rapidly to any cyber security threats.

To enhance their cyber security portfolio, the members will also look into the possibility of developing new technologies such as predictive analytics (using machine learning) and advanced cyber security for the Internet of Things. The alliance will also consider developing a joint roadmap for the evolution of their cyber security portfolios and explore joint investments in security products and services, SOCs, platforms, start-ups and R&D.

“With digital technologies gaining widespread adoption and driving innovation across industry verticals, the security landscape has evolved. Organizations now face a new breed of threats and need to manage digital risks in their environments,” said Francisco Salcedo, senior VP at Etisalat Digital.

Salcedo said the alliance “will give us a unique opportunity to work hand in hand with our telecom counterparts and deliver innovative security services for digital risk management.”

“We need swift and coordinated global responses to defend enterprises that operate across transnational borders as cyber threats are increasing in frequency, scale and sophistication,” said Art Wong, CEO of Global Cyber Security at Singtel.

“Hackers have well-established and organized communities where they cooperate to produce cyber threats,” said Andrew Schwabecher, head of the Cloud & Cyber Security Division at SoftBank. “It’s time that the world’s largest network of operators formed a global alliance to strengthen our defense against these attacks.”

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