In a serious attempt to aid the central bank’s efforts in improving cyber security through best practices and advanced systems, the UAE Banks Federation conducted the largest simulated cyber-attack in the Middle East.
Not to mention the repercussions of such an operation, the stability and flexibility of the country’s financial system were successfully maintained throughout the process.
UAE Banks Federation Hosts A Session To Practise Mock Cyber-Attacks
The workshop, which was organized by the Central Bank of the UAE, aimed to improve the financial sector’s preparedness for cyber-attacks by providing participants with realistic scenarios that allowed them to learn about the fraud strategies and tactics employed by the organizations that carry out these attacks as well as the factors that serve as a source of threats.
Along with representatives from central banks from the Gulf Cooperation Council (GCC), the workshop was attended by a number of senior executives and cyber security specialists from banks and Licensed Financial Institutions (LFIs), as well as observers from the Abu Dhabi Digital Authority, Abu Dhabi Police, Dubai Police, and Dubai Centre for Electronic Security.
According to Dr. Mohammed Hamad Al-Kuwaiti, the chairman of the UAE Government’s Cyber Security Council, the National Cyber Security Strategy aims to strengthen and create an integrated system by implementing myriads of initiatives, analyzing the results, and enhancing them as per the global changes. This makes the UAE one of the leading countries in this field.
“We are keen to provide a secure and robust cyber environment that enables institutions and businesses to develop and grow in a secure and prosperous environment. To this end, it is important to develop the necessary infrastructure and frameworks to protect institutions and individuals from cyber-attacks, as well as to establish the principles of governance related to cyber security,” he remarked.
“Organising a simulated cyber-attack workshop is one of the important initiatives that are appreciated as it provides professionals in the banking and financial sector with the necessary capabilities to discover areas of strength and areas that need to be further developed in order to enhance the digital transformation of the sector, which has witnessed many achievements to consolidate the leading position of the UAE,” he added.
The UAE Banks Federation’s director-general, Jamal Saleh, stated that the organization of this event underlines the organization’s desire to give the safety of the financial system and information security the first priority. The UAE Banks Federation is the representative and unified voice of UAE banks.
“We are all proud to launch this event, the largest of its kind in the region. The wide participation of reputable institutions and cyber security experts in the UAE and the region, and its success motivates us to strive for further developments in the future,” he said.
Saleh also stated that the Federation has established three technical committees on information technology, information security, and digital banking services. These committees will work in collaboration with all member banks and other relevant authorities to advance the drive toward digital transformation in a secure environment.
For his part, Mr. Thabet Bakheet Khamis, the Central Bank of the UAE’s Director of Information Security, also quipped: “The organization of the workshop to simulate cyber-attacks confirms the Central Bank’s keenness in raising the cyber defense capabilities to protect Licensed Financial Institutions (LFIs) and their clients from the risks of cyber-attacks, which are witnessing an increase and are evolving with the accelerating pace of digital transformation, especially in financial processes.”
He further added, “The participation of many banks operating in the country symbolizes the consolidation at the sectoral level in order to build a comprehensive system for maintaining cyber security and to provide a secure cyber environment.”