BT today announced that it has become the first telecommunications provider to sign a data exchange agreement with INTERPOL as it continues to step up its efforts to combat the growing incidence of cyber-crime across the globe.
The accord, signed at the INTERPOL Global Complex for Innovation (IGCI) in Singapore, provides a framework for threat information exchange focusing on data relating to criminal trends in cyber-space, emerging and known cyber-threats and malicious attacks.
The mutual data sharing agreement will foster even greater co-operation between the two parties as they continue their fight to protect families, consumers, businesses and governments against the rising tide of cyber-crime.
BT’s threat intelligence experts will provide the IGCI with their knowledge and unique insight into the evolving global threat landscape, helping INTERPOL in its efforts to identify and take action against cyber-criminals operating around the world.
BT already collaborates closely with INTERPOL and earlier this year was one of only seven international companies with security expertise to provide assistance for a major operation to combat cyber-crime in South East Asia. BT’s threat intelligence and investigation team, based at the company’s security operations centre in Singapore, provided information on regional threats, including data relating to local hactivist groups and phishing sites.
The wider operation uncovered nearly 9,000 command and control (C2) servers, which are typically used to launch Distributed Denial of Service (DDoS) attacks and spread malware, ransomware and spam. Hundreds of compromised websites, including government portals, were also discovered as a result of the investigations.
“The scale and complexity of today’s cyber-threat landscape means cooperation across all sectors is essential if we are to effectively combat this global phenomenon,” said Noboru Nakatani, executive director of the IGCI. “INTERPOL’s agreement with BT is an important step in our continued efforts to ensure law enforcement worldwide has access to the information they need to combat these evolving cyber threats,” added Mr Nakatani.
Mark Hughes, CEO, BT Security, said: “Threat intelligence sharing between law enforcement agencies and the private sector is essential in the fight against cyber-crime, which is increasingly borderless in nature. Tackling cyber-crime therefore requires a collective, global response where the public and private sectors work hand-in-hand. BT’s security expertise will help INTERPOL to identify cyber-criminals and hold them to account, as we jointly develop our understanding of the challenges that we and other organisations face in the battle against cyber-attacks.”
A recent KPMG cyber security report commissioned by BT identified five stages that businesses go through during their journey towards leadership in cyber security. The report concluded that to reach the final stage – True Leadership – businesses must realise that to further strengthen their defences they need to reach out to the wider community by exchanging data and expertise with their peers and public sector organisations. The data sharing agreement between BT and INTERPOL is an example of this being put into practice, with both organisations focused on building a community of partners around the world to mitigate against cyber threats.