5G Security Priority for European Commission

5G Security Priority for European Commission

Security concerns are at the forefront for the European Commission

With 5G right around the corner, the European Commission (EC) has made recommendations regarding the cybersecurity of 5G networks. These recommendations come from a meeting of the European Council that was held on March 22. The meeting looked for an approach to 5G networks security. One of the recommendations called for a National Risk assessment to the infrastructures of 5G networks by the end of June 2019. In addition, the council agreed to update existing security requirements for providers to ensure public 5G networks are safe by having certification requirements, tests, controls and the identification of products or suppliers. The update to security requirements is meant to allow economies and democratic systems to be protected and advance with 5G networks.

The last recommendation is to have an EU-wide certification scheme for 5G. This would become mandatory for all 5G suppliers. “The resilience of our digital infrastructure is critical to government, business, the security of our personal data and the functioning of our democratic institutions,” said Commissioner Julian King, who is in charge of the Security Union, in a statement. “We need to develop a European approach to protecting the integrity of 5G, which is going to be the digital plumbing of our interconnected lives.”

Why are these recommendations suddenly very important? There is grave concern over security for 5G since Huawei has been accused of stealing trade secrets from the U.S. Many countries fear that China is using Huawei so it can spy on rival nations. Some countries have already begun to ban Huawei products from 5G deployments. However, Europe was never interested in banning Huawei but instead opted for tighter security guidelines. Time will tell if Europe made the right decision.

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Valerie Stephen
valeriestephen@geo-tel.com