UAE telecom provider Etisalat, along with Singapore-based telecom operator Singtel, Japan-based SoftBank and Spanish telecom giant Telefónica have signed an agreement to create the first Global Telco Security Alliance to offer enterprises a comprehensive portfolio of cyber security services.
The alliance will 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 can protect enterprises against the rising cyber security risks as the information security environment becomes increasingly complex.
"With digital technologies gaining widespread adoption and driving innovation across industry verticals, the security landscape has evolved," said Francisco Salcedo, Senior Vice President at Etisalat Digital. "Organizations now face a new breed of threats and need to manage digital risks in their environments. Today's strategic 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."
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 world-class Security Operation Centers (SOCs) and employ more than 6,000 cyber security experts. To expand their global footprint, the alliance 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 anywhere and anytime, allowing them to respond rapidly to any cyber security threats.
"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, Chief Executive Officer of Global Cyber Security at Singtel. "Singtel and its US-based subsidiary Trustwave are both well-established security leaders across the Asia Pacific, Europe and the Americas. The group's resources, combined with those of its alliance partners, will provide a robust cyber security platform to protect our global customers, allowing them to thrive in the digital economy."
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 security portfolios and explore joint investments in security products and services, SOCs, platforms, start-ups and R&D.
Andrew Schwabecher, Head of the Cloud & Cyber Security Division at SoftBank Corp. said, "Hackers have well-established and organized communities where they cooperate to produce cyber threats-it's time that the world's largest network of operators formed a global alliance to strengthen our defense against these attacks. SoftBank is excited to join the initial alliance partners including Singtel, Telefónica and Etisalat, to offer enhanced security to our customers and advance our cyber defense."