Fortinet partners with Nato to fight cyberattacks, terrorism

By Roderick L. Abad / Contributor

WITH deadly terrorist attacks targeting European cities, the North Atlantic Treaty Organization (Nato) has partnered with a global leader in high-performance cybersecurity solutions to thwart any possible online attacks in the region.

Within the framework of the Nato Industry Cyber Partnership (NICP), the Nato Communications and Information (NCI) Agency executed an industry partnership agreement with Fortinet.

“The Nato is facing cybersecurity threats across the world that could drastically affect national economies and citizens,” said Koen Gijsbers, general manager of NCI Agency.

The 28 member-state organization is currently facing another blow in the region’s security—though not Web-based—due to a series of bombing incidents on March 21 at the airport and subway station that shattered Brussels, the capital city of Belgium, claiming over 30 lives and injuring more than 100 persons as of press time.

In a video statement, Nato Secretary-General Jens Stoltenberg said that it was a cowardly attack on their values and open societies.

Nevertheless, he vowed that terrorism will not defeat democracy and take away their freedom.

Following the terrorist attack owned up by international secessionist group Islamic State of Iraq and Syria, the Nato has increased the alert state at its headquarters and continuously monitoring the situation very closely.

Terrorism is among the alarming threats now being faced by the global community. Beyond this, organizations, both public or private, and everyday people are constantly under attack, especially in the cyberworld.

The combination of the increase in threats, the ever-evolving attack surface, and the significant growth in the number of tools use by the people every day means the task of protecting everyone will continue to become more and more difficult, Fortinet Founder, President and Chief Technology Officer Michael Xie said.

“If more organizations proactively share actionable intelligence, together we can better combat advanced threats and counteract the latest risks to deliver security without compromise today and in the future,” he said.

Sharing the same sentiment with him, Gijsbers said the NCI strongly believes sharing information on threats and susceptibilities with leading companies worldwide, such as Fortinet, is an urgent measure to avoid online attacks or any possible activities that could result into chaos.

The Nato-Fortinet alliance is a win-win partnership that is seen to bolster two-way information sharing, particularly on cyber-threat intelligence.

Among the expectations, their partnership will help improve cyber defense in Nato’s defense supply chain; facilitate participation of industry organizations in multinational Smart Defense projects; improve sharing of expertise, information and experience of operating under the constant threat of cyberattack, including information on threats and vulnerabilities, e.g., malware information sharing; raise awareness and improve the understanding of cyber risks; leverage private-sector developments for capability development; and generate efficient and adequate support in case of cyber incidents.

Fortinet is a provider of global cybersecurity solutions, with broad, high-performance protection capability against dynamic security threats while simplifying the information technology infrastructure. The NCI Agency is responsible for operating and defending Nato’s networks.

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Roderick L. Abad graduated from Pamantasan ng Lungsod ng Maynila, with a degree course in Bachelor of Arts in Mass Communication. He has 12 years of journalism experience, starting as a Special Features Writer in a major daily newspaper. In 2006, he moved to the BusinessMirror in the same capacity and, eventually, became a beat reporter. To his credit, he was a finalist in the 2011 Holcim Journalism Awards for Sustainable Construction and the 2013 Lasallian Scholarum Awards. He remains affiliated with the BusinessMirror as a contributor.