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Tuesday, April 16, 2024

6G/7G Network: Maida advocates secure, inclusive digital future

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As the world witnesses the dawn of six, seven (6G, 7G) and even more generations network away from the current landscape of 5G, the Executive Vice Chairman/CEO of Nigerian Communications Commission (NCC), Dr. Aminu Maida has advocated a secure and inclusive digital future in Telecom industry.

In his welcome address at the “Telecoms Industry Risk Management Conference,” held in Lagos recently, he said, “It is a pleasure to be here today, surrounded by distinguished individuals at the “Telecoms Industry Risk Management Conference,” a gathering that brings together various stakeholders that includes- risk experts, academia, financial institutions, and professionals in telecommunications.

“I extend a warm welcome to each of you and grateful for the opportunity to explore the critical theme of “Evolution and Future Risk Management in the Telecoms Industry: Harnessing Emerging Technologies and Trends.”

“In an era marked by rapid technological advancements, the telecommunications industry finds itself at the forefront of innovation, shaping the way we communicate, connect, and conduct business. As we navigate this dynamic environment, the need for effective risk management becomes increasingly paramount.

“Today, we stand at the crossroads of tradition and transformation, where emerging technologies and trends present both unprecedented opportunities and challenges.

“While we discuss the current landscape of 5G networks, which boast of wider attack surface due to the increased number of connected devices and denser network infrastructure, it is imperative to even cast our gaze into the future. We are witnessing the dawn of 6G technology, the next frontier in wireless communication. With promises of even faster speeds, lower latency, and groundbreaking applications, 6G has the potential to revolutionize the way we experience connectivity. However, with this advancement comes the responsibility to address new risks, from cybersecurity threats to ethical considerations, ensuring that we pave the way for a secure and inclusive digital future.

“Looking beyond, the prospect of 7G technology also looms on the horizon. As we contemplate the possibilities, we must acknowledge that with each generational leap, we face not only technological advancements but also a fresh set of challenges. Anticipating and managing risks associated with 7G will require collaboration, innovation, and a proactive approach to ensure the seamless integration of this technology into our interconnected world.

“In addition to the evolution of connectivity, we must consider the implications of emerging technologies such as quantum technologies (computing, sensing, and communications), advanced artificial intelligence, and Block Chain (distributed ledger) technologies. These trends, when harnessed effectively, hold the potential to transform our industry positively. However, they also introduce complexities that demand careful consideration in our risk management strategies.

“The Nigerian Communications Commission (NCC) remains committed to fostering an environment that encourages innovation while prioritising the security and stability of our telecom infrastructure.

“As we navigate through 5G and the uncharted territory of the next generations of wireless technologies, collaborative efforts among regulators, industry players, and other stakeholders become even more crucial for sharing best practices, threat intelligence, resources and implementing robust risk management strategies. We should therefore move beyond mere compliance and reactive measures, and instead, harness the power of these new technologies and trends to build a resilient and future-proof industry.

“You would recall that in my engagements with the Industry and Media, I had stated that collaboration is a key driver of my leadership. Together, we can build a shared understanding of emerging risks and develop comprehensive mitigation strategies.

“Building a culture of risk awareness is paramount. As an industry, we must empower our people with the knowledge and skills to proactively identify and report risks and embed security awareness and risk management practices throughout our business processes. Emerging technologies such as AI should be leveraged to generate data-driven insights needed to predict, detect, and respond to risks in real-time. We should also monitor evolving threats and vulnerabilities on a continuous basis and streamline incidence response processes to build a resilient telecom industry.

“Ladies and Gentlemen, as we engage in discussions in these two days, let us not only address the challenges posed by current technologies but also anticipate and prepare for the opportunities and risks associated with the evolution towards 6G and beyond. Together, we can ensure that the telecoms industry not only adapts to change but thrives at the forefront of technological innovation.”

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