France wants to progress in cybersecurity

Advance in cybersecurity. It is to this long-term race that all companies in France are invited, while the Minister of the Economy Bruno Le Maire and Cédric O, Secretary of State in charge of the digital transition, should make announcements, Monday 15 February, to strengthen this sector of activity. The government is particularly expected on the progress of a French campus project dedicated to cybersecurity.

The origins of the project date back to 2015, when Emmanuel Macron, then Minister of the Economy, visited Cyberspark, an innovation campus based in Beer-Sheva, some sixty kilometers south of Tel Aviv. The site welcomes industrialists, researchers and start-ups by the hundreds. Later elected President of the Republic, Emmanuel Macron announced, at the end of 2019, a project inspired by what he had seen in Israel.

The French version, on a smaller scale, should however be the subject of investments exceeding one billion euros, and allow the hiring of several hundred “cyber-combatants”.

Still a lot of cyber attacks

Over the years, cyber defense has become a major strategic issue for companies, liable to be attacked by various forces. ” We have seen ordinary delinquency, the one that once attacked car radios, switch to cyber delinquency, explains Alain Bouillé, general delegate of Cesin (club of information and digital security experts). At the other end of the spectrum is state-organized cybercrime. And, in the middle of a more or less organized cybercrime “. The bigger the actor, the more sophisticated and difficult the attacks to track down.

Also, the year 2020 did not mark a pause in the frequency of attacks. This is shown by the results, published this week, of the poll that the Cesin commissions each year. 57% of companies say they have experienced at least one cyberattack in 2020. And one in five companies has been the victim of a ransomware attack, in which malicious software takes a user’s personal data hostage. returns in exchange for a sum of money.

Outsourcing weakens information systems

The “phishing” (or “phishing”) which consists in sending to make believe to a victim that it is addressed to a trusted site (company, bank…) in order to extract personal information from him remains a very wide operating mode. ” During the first confinement, proposals to sell gel, masks, were new vectors to encourage opening attachments, explains Alain Bouillé, but there was no tidal wave attributable to the crisis ».

According to the expert, the acceleration of the digital transition caused by the health crisis could be done in a way ” rushed », But this situation is not enough to explain the maintenance of a high number of cyber-malicious acts.

These are rather to be blamed on a more structural evolution, in particular the outsourcing of information systems to the “cloud” (the digital cloud). “Cloud providers are not always up to the task of delivering solutions, advances Alain Bouillé. The work of IT support, updates of station, formerly carried out internally but today outsourced, is weakened since even the IT companies supposed to protect their client companies are themselves attacked. When this happens to them, they cut off their relationships with corporate clients, who are among the collateral victims. »

Olvid, the alternative to WhatsApp

If it is constantly explained that the stranglehold on data will decide the economic powers of the future, many are those who wish to organize resistance. Among them, Olvid, a messaging service that does not hide its desire to challenge the overwhelming domination of WhatsApp and its 2.7 billion users. For Thomas Baignères, doctor in cryptography and founder of Olvid, « the centralized directory of users used by the messaging system of which Facebook is the owner is an instrument where personal data can be stored ”.

While working to adopt an ergonomics as simple as that of WhatsApp, the founder of Olvid seeks to differentiate himself by offering, on the one hand, the same basic services (personal messaging, group messaging, photo sharing, videos …) as its American competitor, but on the other hand offering paid options for secure calls, videoconferencing, etc. for professionals.

To authenticate his interlocutor, the exchange of a four-digit code is systematic. « At Medef, we have a differentiated adaptability to Olvid, smiles Geoffroy Roux de Bézieux, head of the employers’ organization, but we are looking to implement it to replace WhatsApp, which we used for informal groups. “

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