Japan's Softbank, Etisalat and two other telcos to form cybersecurity alliance

The pact will offer services to businesses to combat cyber threats

FILE - In this file photo taken on Jan. 23 2018, a solider watches code lines on his computer screen at the French Defense ministry stand during the International Cybersecurity forum in Lille, northern France. France has flagged more than 78,000 people as security threats in a database intended to let European police share information on the continent's most dangerous residents _ more than all other European countries put together _ according to an analysis by The Associated Press. (AP Photo/Michel Spingler, File)
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Japanese technology giant SoftBank Group and three telecom operators that include Abu Dhabi-based Etisalat are forming an alliance to offer cyber security services to businesses, helping them combat rising cyber threats.

The companies, which also include Spain’s Telefonica and Singapore’s Singtel, have signed a formal pact for the Global Telco Security Alliance that will have more than 1.2 billion customers in over 60 countries across Asia Pacific, Europe, the Middle East and the Americas, Etisalat said in a statement on Thursday.

“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,” the statement said. “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."

Cyber security threats around the world are on the rise as perpetrators are using new tools for attacking businesses and penetrating information technology infrastructure.

Last May, major companies such as FedEx and Telefonica, together with public institutions including the UK’s National Health Service, were some of the victims of a world-wide WannaCry ransomware attack.

Researchers at Kaspersky Lab at the time recorded more than 45,000 attacks in 74 countries worldwide, including the UK, UAE, Spain, Russia and Saudi Arabia.


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Kaspersky Lab said on Thursday it has uncovered a new cyberespionage campaign called “Operation Parliament” that is targeting high profile organisations, particularly those from the Middle East and North Africa. The attacks, which have been active since 2017, have hit top legislative, executive and judicial powers, including governmental and large private entities from the region. Countries affected include UAE, Saudi Arabia, Jordan, Palestine, Egypt, Kuwait, Qatar, Iraq, Lebanon, Oman, Djibouti and Somalia.