UAE Urged to Boost Cybersecurity Amid Growing Threats

News Desk -


UAE Cyber Security Council and CPX Holding, a prominent provider of digital-first cybersecurity solutions and services, have jointly unveiled the ‘State of the UAE – Cybersecurity Report 2024’. This comprehensive report provides a detailed examination of the cybersecurity landscape in the UAE, emphasizing the critical necessity for advanced cybersecurity measures to counter the escalating complexity and sophistication of cyber threats.

Highlighting the urgency of the situation, the report reveals over 155,000 vulnerable assets within the UAE, with more than 40 percent of critical vulnerabilities remaining unaddressed for over five years. This vulnerability, combined with the rise in advanced cyber-attacks such as ransomware, underscores the imperative need for robust cyber defenses in a region at the forefront of AI-driven technological innovations and geopolitical significance.

Key trends shaping current cybersecurity challenges, including ransomware attacks representing over half of cyber incidents, are explored in the report. Sectors such as Government, Energy, and Information Technology are identified as the most targeted by cyber threat actors, with traditional attack vectors like Business Email Compromise (BEC) and phishing still posing significant threats. The integration of AI tools into these methods is expected to enhance their sophistication, amplifying social engineering efforts, phishing lures, and the deployment of deep-fake technology to deceive victims.

Furthermore, the report underscores the financial repercussions of data breaches, with the Middle East, including the UAE, experiencing the second-highest data breach costs globally. This reflects the economic targets of cyber threat actors against the backdrop of Gulf prosperity. The increase in Distributed Denial of Service (DDoS) attacks further accentuates the geopolitical intricacies of cyber threats, necessitating a comprehensive and strategic defense mechanism to safeguard the nation.

H.E. Dr. Mohamed Al Kuwaiti, Head of Cyber Security for the UAE Government, emphasized the imperative for collective vigilance and strategic action in the face of increasingly sophisticated cyber threats. He called for proactive engagement from all stakeholders to enhance cybersecurity measures, protect digital infrastructure, and secure the nation’s economic well-being and safety.

Hadi Anwar, Executive Director – Strategic Programs at CPX, highlighted the evolving nature of cyber threats and the economic vulnerabilities they pose. He stressed the importance of a unified approach in bolstering national defenses, advocating for advanced technologies, cyber awareness, and resilience to mitigate threats effectively.

The report also addresses unique cybersecurity challenges faced by the UAE, including advanced persistent threats (APTs) and the growing reliance on digital infrastructure. It emphasizes the need for enhanced defense capabilities and a culture of cybersecurity awareness across all sectors of society.

Compiled by a consortium of cybersecurity experts, the report serves as a strategic guide for government entities, businesses, and individuals, offering actionable insights to navigate the complexities of the digital era. Key best practices highlighted include implementing Endpoint Detection & Response (EDR), establishing a 24/7 Security Operation Centre (SOC), leveraging Cyber Threat Intelligence, creating and implementing an Incident Response Plan, and adopting proactive threat hunting processes.

As the UAE continues to lead in digital transformation, addressing these challenges demands a concerted effort from government entities, private organizations, and individuals to ensure the resilience and security of the nation’s digital landscape.

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