Sunday 27 September, 2020

5G players should collaborate to resolve cybersecurity issues -expert

Dr Johannes Drooghaag

Dr Johannes Drooghaag

A leading cybersecurity consultant is calling on 5G technology manufacturers worldwide to collaborate in resolving cybersecurity issues in order to produce better products and to achieve better financial outcomes.

Dr Johannes Drooghaag, Executive Consultant in cybersecurity said common standards should be established and solutions shared by the handful of companies involved in the 5G roll-out.

“I am against isolation or separation of the market for political and commercial reasons...

as an industry we need to establish common standards," Dr Drooghaag stated.

Speaking during an Online Cybersecurity Media Workshop hosted by Chinese tech giant Huawei on Tuesday, the tech expert said that all 5G players – and there were not many of them worldwide - should share their threat analysis and conduct the same testing and validation, so that all companies involved could improve managing cyber threats.

Dr Drooghaag cited the automotive industry as one in which the various players shared their knowledge and experience in order to address risks and lower costs.

In telecommunications, 5G is the fifth generation technology standard for cellular networks, which cell phone companies began deploying worldwide in 2019, the planned successor to the 4G networks which provide connectivity to most current cellphones. The main advantage of 5G networks is that they will have greater bandwidth, giving faster download speeds.

Commenting on what seems to be attempts by some countries to exclude or limit Huawei’s involvement in the 5G roll-out, Dr Drooghaag said sidelining of Huawei would not be good for cybersecurity.

“Huawei will not leave the market; they will continue to be a significant player. If we cut them off from technology development or from parts suppliers, we are going to create a significant threat for cybersecurity...We are going to reduce innovation because we cut off a partner that has been very innovative. If you start imposing sanctions on a vendor and the suppliers of a vendor you are going to reduce economic potential and that is not how a free market is supposed to work,” Dr Drooghaag said.

Meanwhile, Andy Purdy, Chief Security Officer, Huawei Technologies USA said Huawei had invited independent experts to conduct tests and to identify vulnerabilities in its products. He said the global community including governments and private companies should be part of the dialogue in setting up international standards and to identify malicious cyber activity.

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