Cybersecurity is one of the main systemic risks we face as a digital society. The Covid-19 crisis and the acceleration of digitalisation is exponentially multiplying the number of connected devices and revealing the strategic importance of cybersecurity. 

It is essential to incorporate a holistic vision of cybersecurity that covers the full cycle of prevention, detection and response and that considers all actors in the value chain. It is therefore crucial to provide companies, regardless of their size, with the necessary resources to make the investment effort required to be prepared to face risks.

Until now, markets have prioritised the launch of new products and services over the need to incorporate security in them. Speed in development and marketing has been rewarded without paying attention to the need to provide security in technology from its earliest stages.

Along these lines, it is necessary to develop regulatory measures that require the incorporation of the principle of “security by design” for all agents involved in the value chain. The main objective is to reduce security risks especially in those small and medium-sized enterprises with fewer resources and less preparedness to deal with vulnerabilities. 

Software and hardware manufacturers as well as service providers must be directly subject to legal obligations and minimum requirements to provide end-to-end security to users.

Investment in technology will not be sufficient if it is not accompanied by awareness and training programmes for employees, customers and users. The human factor is decisive and often represents the first firewall against cyber-attacks. The gap between supply and demand for specialised professionals continues to widen and this shortage is beginning to be considered one of the main labour shortages of our time.

At Telefónica we also insist on the need to strengthen public-private cooperation at the international level in this area, which would allow us to offer collective responses and implement scalable solutions that accelerate the adoption of best practices. No single country or company can cope with cyber threats alone.

Telefónica is one of 150 international companies that have signed the Cybersecurity Tech Accord to promote a safer digital world.

Telefónica has also joined the Telco Security Alliance to share network intelligence on cyber threats and leverage its joint global reach, knowledge, assets and cybersecurity capabilities to serve and protect customers around the world.