Navigating 5G Network Security: Ericsson’s AI-driven Approach

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Tech powerhouse Ericsson has partnered with Concordia University, the University of Manitoba, and the University of Waterloo in a bold initiative aimed at enhancing the cybersecurity of the 5G network. Their ambitious mandate involves leveraging automation and AI to build an ultra-secure, cyber resilient 5G network. Their project has landed a successful bid for funding via Canada’s Cyber Security Innovation Network program, where they stand to obtain up to $80 million in funding support.

The proposed strategy? To forge ahead with both automation and AI solutions, capable of both detecting and preventing attacks on the 5G network, with the added foresight for upcoming 6G networks. These solutions are expected to better predict forthcoming attacks while monitoring existing ones. Furthermore, these institutions intend to use ‘5G orchestration capabilities’ to design, test, and roll out new defense mechanisms dynamically.

Jeanette Irekvist, President of Ericsson Canada, highlighted Canada’s leadership in cybersecurity and Ericsson’s commitment to innovating secure telecommunications networks. She said, “It’s our hope that this partnership with Concordia University, the University of Manitoba and the University of Waterloo will help support the field and the adoption of made-in-Canada solutions. As we celebrate 70 years in Canada, it’s partnerships like this that continue to drive our success here.”

François-Philippe Champagne, Minister of Innovation, Science and Industry, also expressed optimism about this collaboration, emphasizing the impact of trust in the digital world and the role of cybersecurity in enabling Canadians to achieve their full potential. He said, “The National Cybersecurity Consortium, Ericsson and university partners are showcasing how collaboration between the private sector and academia will ensure the innovations of today can thrive in the economy of tomorrow.”

Apart from securing the existing 5G network, this project also positions Ericsson to take a lead role in the ongoing research of 6G networks. One of the inherent challenges of adopting ‘business contexts and use cases’ at scale is the increased stress on network capabilities, leading to complex security and privacy requirements. This issue then accelerates the growth of ‘potentially unsecured’ devices, an area that BT has recently flagged as a significant concern. They noted that cyber threats in the UK are escalating at an alarming rate, with businesses facing 530 cyber attacks every second.

With projects like this one, we pave the way for a more secure digital future for all, fortifying our networks from the ever-increasing cyber threats and unlocking their full economic and innovative potential.

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