As nations are subjected to new and profound geopolitical stresses, we gain a clearer insight into the criticality of affected infrastructure and services.
Just like water, gas and electrics, mobile networks are an essential part of the critical national infrastructure on which millions of lives depend. The need to ensure they are protected, stable and even prepared for uses outside of conventional service provision is becoming an issue of increasing importance for the mobile industry.
This is the motivation behind the creation of the GSMA’s SEC CON 2023. On 27th September at MWC Las Vegas, there will be a continuation of the SEC CON 2023: Securing telecoms in times of conflict summit held earlier this year at MWC 23 Barcelona. This will come with a renewed focus and insights on network security and its important role in times of global conflict.
In moments of crisis, mobile connectivity is a lifeline which is why mobile networks are a vital piece of critical infrastructure. Mobile and telecom services keep economies moving forward, with access to essential services. That is why it is essential for the mobile industry to understand how mobile networks can remain available and resilient during times of conflict.
Key learnings from the opening phases of the conflict in Ukraine were the impactful ways in which mobile networks, infrastructure and components were utilised by mobile network providers. In other conflict areas, mobile networks and their operations have enabled people to continue communicating with each other and maintaining access to the great variety of services that depend on the mobile internet. It has also allowed people to use apps to report areas of danger, help rescue operations and inform authorities.
With these experiences in mind, it is important that the industry dedicates more time to working on the role of mobile networks in times of conflict. Here, industry events such as SEC CON can play a key role in guiding the industry towards key issues and shaping collaborative efforts to overcome common issues.
The GSMA was created on the common understanding to build and operate a worldwide mobile telecommunication network without borders. It is well-placed to foster changes and improvements to communications and supply chain resilience. At SEC CON in Las Vegas, attendees will have the opportunity to discover this from a range of leading security experts from leading organisations such as ENEA Adaptive Mobile Security, Kyivstar, Mitre, Sec Dev Group and Virginia Tech.