DUBAI, April 12 (Xinhua) -- Emirates Telecommunications Corporation, known as Etisalat, said Thursday it has signed an agreement with three foreign companies to create "the first global cyber security alliance."
Etisalat, the most valuable listed company in the United Arab Emirates (UAE), said in an emailed statement that the three foreign partners include Singapore's Singtel, Japan's Softbank and Spanish blue chip firm Telefonica.
Etisalat, whose shares are traded on the Abu Dhabi stock market ADX, said the four-member alliance will share cyber risk intelligence and security capabilities to protect enterprises from cyber threats globally.
The firm claimed that this alliance "will be one of the world's biggest cyber security providers, with more than 1.2 billion customers in over 60 countries across Asia Pacific, Europe, Middle East and the Americas."
Etisalat said that, through the combined resources, "the group can protect enterprises against the rising cyber security risks as the information security environment becomes increasingly complex."
The group's members operate 22 world-class security operation centres (SOCs) and employ more than 6,000 cyber security experts.
To enhance their cyber security portfolio, the members will look into the possibility of developing new technologies such as predictive analytics using machine learning and advanced cyber security for the Internet of Things.
The alliance will also consider developing a joint roadmap for the evolution of their security portfolios and explore joint investments in security products and services, SOCs, platforms, start-ups and R&D.
Gartner, a U.S. information technology consulting company, forecast in last December that the worldwide security spending would reach 96 billion U. S. dollars in 2018, up 8 percent year on year.
In order to expand its global footprint, the alliance is open to bringing in new members over time, said Etisalat.