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Cyber Attacks Remain a Concern for UAE Businesses

Cyber Attacks Remain a Concern for UAE Businesses

In a recent report titled State of the UAE — Cybersecurity Report 2024, it has been revealed that the UAE is currently home to 155,000 vulnerable cyber assets, with 40% of them being over five years old. Published by the UAE Cyber Security Council and CPX Holding, a leading provider of digital-first cybersecurity solutions, the report sheds light on the critical need for advanced cybersecurity measures in response to the increasing complexity and sophistication of cyber threats.

Key Findings and Concerns

The report highlights that government, energy, and information technology sectors are the most targeted by cyber threat actors. Despite the evolving threat landscape, traditional attack vectors such as business email compromise (BEC) and phishing remain prevalent, posing a continuous threat. With the integration of AI tools, these methods are expected to become more sophisticated, enhancing social engineering efforts and phishing lures.

Emerging Threat Trends

There has been a notable shift in attack vectors, with a nearly 30% increase in Insider Threat-related incidents and an 18% increase in Drive-by-Downloads. This rise is largely driven by the use of Infostealing Malware and Spyware to acquire organizational credentials. Additionally, the report identifies remote access and network vulnerabilities as prime targets for cyber threat actors, facilitating unauthorized system access without physical network presence.

Diverse Array of Threat Actors

The UAE faces a diverse array of cyber threat actors, ranging from nation-state threat actors to eCrime groups and hacktivists. Nation-state actors, in particular, are motivated by espionage or destructive purposes, investing significant resources to compromise specific targets. Moreover, 86% of incidents target large organizations within the UAE, highlighting the severity of the threat landscape.

Call to Action

Dr. Mohamed Al Kuwaiti, head of cyber security for the UAE government, emphasized the urgent need for collective vigilance and strategic action to mitigate cyber risks. He urged all stakeholders to unite in enhancing cyber security measures to protect the nation’s digital infrastructure and economic well-being.

Addressing Economic Vulnerabilities

Hadi Anwar, executive director of strategic programs at CPX, stressed the economic vulnerabilities at stake due to cyber incidents. He emphasized the importance of adopting advanced technologies and fostering a culture of cyber awareness and resilience to safeguard against threats.

Conclusion

As cyber threats continue to evolve, the report serves as a wake-up call for UAE businesses and policymakers to prioritize cybersecurity measures. By investing in advanced technologies, fostering cyber awareness, and promoting collaboration, the UAE can strengthen its cyber resilience and protect its digital assets effectively.

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