Google establishes Asia-Pacific cyber defense hub in Tokyo

Chiang, Jen-Chieh, Taipei; Jerry Chen, DIGITIMES Asia 0

Credit: Google

Google announced the establishment of its first network defense center in the Asia-Pacific region, situated in Tokyo, Japan.

This comes amidst escalating concerns about cyber threats from China and North Korea.

Google's new cybersecurity center

According to Nikkei and Fuji News Network, Google unveiled its plans on March 7, 2024, emphasizing the necessity to address mounting cybersecurity challenges in the region. The center is housed within Google's Tokyo office in the Roppongi District.

It aims to collaborate with Japanese government officials, businesses, and universities to exchange insights on cybersecurity and research defense measures against cyber-attacks. In addition, Google hopes to foster cooperation on cybersecurity initiatives across the Asia-Pacific.

Google intends to invite engineers from India, Australia, South Korea, Japan, and Southeast Asian countries to explore strategies to combat cyber threats. Furthermore, Google will offer cybersecurity training programs in Japan, catering to up to 2,500 small and medium-sized enterprises and nonprofit organizations.

This move is consistent with Google's commitment to invest JPY100 billion (US$700 million) in Japan by 2024 to drive digital transformation initiatives. Having established its first data center in Japan's Chiba Prefecture in April 2023, the company plans to continue investing in network infrastructure and strengthening cybersecurity measures in Japan.

Rising cybersecurity threats

Reportedly there has been a surge in demand for cybersecurity in Asia. In September 2023, the United States National Security Agency (NSA) and the Japanese Police accused BlackTech, a hacker group linked to China, of conducting information theft-related cyber-attacks in Japan, the United States, and other Asian countries.

Taiwan-based cybersecurity firm TeamT5 revealed in January 2024 that Advanced Persistent Threat Groups (APT) associated with China persistently launched high-density cyber attacks targeting Japan, South Korea, Taiwan, and Southeast Asian countries.

Recorded Future, a US-based cybersecurity analysis company, reported that 80% of cyber-attacks are attributed to Lazarus Group, and occurred in Asia. The hacker group is said to have an affiliation with North Korea.

Additionally, Check Point Software Technologies, an Israeli cybersecurity company, noted that organizations in the Asia-Pacific region accounted for 11% of those targeted by malicious software attacks in 2023. The number surpassed the United States' 9% and the EMEA region (Europe, Middle East, and Africa)'s 10%.