Research reveals Gulf organisations are a soft target for cyber attacks

Sunday 13 November 2016
Bulent Teksoz, Global Cyber Security Strategist at BAE Systems Applied Intelligence, Dubai

Dubai - MENA Herald: A recent study conducted by YouGov on behalf BAE Systems reveals that many organisations have not made the right preparations to protect themselves against aggressive cyber-attacks.

Nearly half of those polled said their organisation lacked security controls, with the figure as high as 55 per cent in Saudi Arabia. The UAE appears more cyber-savvy with two thirds believing that they had the right systems in place.

However, only 45 per cent of respondents in the UAE had actually tested their procedures within the past six months and 37 per cent did not know if they had ever been tested at all.

Cyber-attacks in the Gulf region appear to be most prevalent in the UAE with eight per cent experiencing a cyber-attack within the past four weeks and 28 per cent having endured an attack in the last year.

Bulent Teksoz, Global Cyber Security Strategist at BAE Systems Applied Intelligence, Dubai said: “Cyber-attacks not only cost the organisation significant sums in lost revenues, sometimes multi-millions of dollars, but can also cause irreparable reputational damage. The global cost of cyber-crime is estimated to be worth billions of Dirhams with increasingly sophisticated and coordinated attacks generating huge sums for criminals and other groups.”

With 34 per cent of respondents stating that their organisations had suffered a cyber-attack in the past six months, this shows the Gulf region is not immune to cyber-attack. Alarmingly 43 per cent didn’t know what the attack on their business had cost, directly or indirectly.

BAE Systems research and a case study will be presented at the RSA conference in Abu Dhabi next week. RSA is a global event which aims to expose the latest cyber-security threats and to share means of mitigation.

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