On the first day of Hack In The Box (HITB)+CyberWeek 2021, the world’s cyber security community came together in the UAE capital as the annual industry spectacle officially got underway.
HITB+CyberWeek’s opening day featured keynote speakers who provided their viewpoints on the current cyber topics, brought to you by DisruptAD, ADQ’s ventures platform that promotes the economic potential of innovative tech start-ups and breakthroughs innovations from Abu Dhabi. At Abu Dhabi National Exhibition Centre, participants and cyber security professionals embarked on an insightful, informative, and extremely beneficial trip guided by the pillars of hacking, making, building, and breaking (ADNEC).
HE Dr Mohamed Al Kuwaiti, the United Arab Emirates (UAE) Government’s Head of Cyber Security, delivered an opening keynote speech in which he discussed the urgent need to create a culture of cyber security: “When assessing the current and future cyber landscape, there can be no doubt that the cyber pandemic gripping the industry is here to stay. Ransomware-driven attacks have been become more commonplace, particularly here in the Middle East and cyber-attacks show no signs of abating. Therefore, it is the shared responsibility of governments, organizations, and individuals to find solutions together. By ensuring that the most pressing factors are identified and integrated, we can secure tomorrow’s digital government and economy starting today.”
Matt Johnson, Chief Information Security Officer (CISO) at Ledger, then joined the proceedings as an international keynote speaker, discussing the world of alternative payments and cryptocurrency. Speaking after his address, he said: “Cyber security is an integral component of alternative payments and cryptocurrency, and we have seen massive changes take place in both these areas over the past 12-18 months. It was a real pleasure to be involved here today to examine these changes and explore what we believe will be key trends in the future. Mainstream curiosity is here, and now is the time for us to transition this curiosity to secure mainstream adoption.”
Commenting on the HITB+Cyberweek 2021 day one highlight, Dhillon Kannabhiran, Founder and Chief Executive Officer, HITB, added: “Excitement and anticipation had been building in the weeks leading up to this year’s event. With the first day now concluded, it’s pleasing that the event is living up to its billing as a pivotal chapter in the next stage of world-class cyber security development.”
Day One showcases
The keynote remarks undoubtedly set the tone for the rest of the day, with guests excited to see what the exhibition had to offer. Aside from the seminars, competitions, and training opportunities, the exhibitions on display at HITB+CyberWeek 2021 piqued interest. The StartUp Village by DisruptAD and the debutant ‘Payment Village,’ where many visitors became familiar with ATM hacks with Timur Yunusov, a payment and application security expert and one of the exhibition’s organizers, were among the futuristic, innovative villages that showcased the latest technologies. Timur has contributed to several payment security research articles and cyber security conferences, and his presence and thoughts were invaluable throughout the day.
DisruptAD took center stage, emphasizing the long-term benefits of fostering the skills, knowledge, and expertise required to safeguard online assets and digital infrastructure among students and young cyber security talent.