Is 5G the superhighway for cybercrime?

We live in an always connected world. So much so that in The Netherlands they’ve put the red ‘don’t walk’ light on the ground as people are so engrossed looking down at their mobile device. If you ask how wireless connectivity can be improved: it’s faster download, quicker response and more reliable connection. According to its promise 5G will deliver all that and more! Great news for consumers. But will it be the cybercriminals who are real winners?

Why the buzz?
5G is expected to be 1000 times faster than 4G when it comes to download speed. Some predict it’ll exceed 10Gbps. This means that a consumer can download a whole movie in seconds. Even a HDR quality movie!

What’s more 5G also brings with it low latency. The network will respond much faster to a request, as low as 1 millisecond. This opens the door to a new era of professional live streaming. The improved reliability and minimal buffering will give consumers a better user experience. With this, streaming live sports will really take off!

And then there’s IoT. 5G’s low latency, reliability and low-power connectivity will accelerate IoT uptake; making it easier to launch new services for autonomous driving, smart cities and homes. From those services, the millions of censors will provide unprecedented insights into consumer behavior. The providers, for instance an MSO expanding beyond media, will have vital business intelligence to tailor their services but they’ll also have a greater responsibility to protect the privacy of their users’ data.

How will 5G aid cybercrime?
As well as pirate content being faster to download, with 5G upload time is quicker. Live sports remain one of the most popular types of content in pirate TV packages; the improved streaming capabilities will mean it’s even easier to illegally redistribute high quality content.

With 5G’s role in the acceleration of IoT, the increased number of connected devices will provide cybercriminals with a much larger attack surface to exploit. New ways to steal credentials and data plus other nefarious activities. 5G could really be the superhighway for cybercrime.

What can you do to mitigate the risk?
Whether you’re an MSO or content owner protecting your premium content remains paramount. With 5G, the scale required to ensure a high SLA will be even higher, since it’ll be much easier for consumers to watch OTT content, e.g. live sports. Of course, speed is of the essence. Watermarking combined with the fastest online piracy detection of redistributed content is a must-have!

What about your own systems? How vulnerable are they? Implementing cybersecurity assessments, penetration testing and audits ensures that you’re able to minimize the impact of any would-be attack.

Undoubtedly, 5G is poised to transform our connected lives. Being vigilant as you roll out 5G solutions and services will ensure that you’re well prepared to take the fight to the cybercriminals to the next level.