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UAE proactive towards cyber threat

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RITIKA SHARMA / Emirates Business

Middle East, especially the UAE, is leading the world in the use of managed security services (or MSS) to protect networks from cyber threats. As the technology further evolves, IT companies in the country are taking a step further in their cyber security and embracing proactive threat-hunting, in which cyber defenders seek to stop threats before they do any harm to the networks.
A recent Raytheon company-sponsored survey titled Don’t Wait: The Evolution of Proactive Threat Hunting states that companies in the Middle East are ahead of other regions in employing cyber defense measures through using external security service providers. It also revels the leading-edge trends in the evolution of managed security services from reactive to proactive.
Reacting on the above in context of UAE, Navin Narendran, Founder of GoLive Innovative Mobility Solutions told Emirates Business, “Companies in UAE are exposed to the latest technology in information security. The challenges lie more in terms of following the best practices.”
“A technology with the best features is as good as the policies implemented on them and continued review of these policies to adapt to the constantly changing threat scenarios. It’s in this that I believe there is a major gap.”
Emphasising on the need of having an intelligent approach towards cyber security, Narendran added, “The concept the information security is everybody’s responsibility and not just the CIO’s is a mindset that needs to be changed. ‘Continuous awareness campaigns within organisations’ are what I see as the missing link, this of course apart from the policies and best practices.”
The survey also mentions that a key challenge for Middle Eastern companies is the difficulty of finding MSSPs that support and integrate with the company’s systems and requirements.
Commenting on above, Karan Patel, Marketing Manager at 2GIS told Emirates Business, “We all know IOT has a promising upward trend, however with this trend the security exponentially gets more complicated by giving hackers more entry points. In the past, you had to protect your servers and in-house devices. Now, you have to protect basically any device that’s connected.”
“It is not an easy task. All it takes is one compromised device to give hackers a foot in the door, IT companies in the UAE are adapting various measures by routinely checking illegal sites for stolen information that can be found and avoided before it creates further damage, and they also detect threat and hackers in real time and eliminate it without human intervention.”
Experts are suggesting an economic cut down on effective technology to support a safe network for companies of all level right from Multi nationals to small and medium scale businesses.
“We all talk about big data but these data are very venerable and can be exploited, however to implement these measures is expensive and only large enterprises can afford it, and SME’s do lose out on the deal, I guess a cheaper access to these resources can change the game and so that these Technologies can be implemented by all businesses,” he said.
However it is a general consensus that UAE is doing its best and is definitely leading the bandwagon when it comes to innovative and updated cyber security measures.
Mohamed Djenane, Security Specialist – ESET Middle East told Emirates Business, “I believe the Middle East and especially the UAE are very keen to adopt new effective cyber security solutions, the IT community is well served with cyber security seminars and exhibition, this helps in the overall awareness of new technologies and help adopt innovative defense measures.”
Talking about specific threats that loom large over the UAE IT industry, he said, “We can see that the region is under multiple cyber threats from advanced persistent threats to customised tailored attacks, this pushes the cyber defense professionals to be always on the look for the cutting edge security measures and deploy innovative solution to keep their assets protected.”
Adding that more needs to be done to become ‘fool-proof’, when it comes to cyber threats, Djenane said, “We are always in a constant way of learning, from our experience and from others too. New types of attacks emerge on a frequent basis. We can see that there are many regulations and compliances for both private and government sectors to maintain certain security standard, but I believe that there is always a room for improvement.”

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