Sy­man­tec to ac­tively par­tic­i­pate in EGOV4

IT se­cu­rity leader stresses phi­los­o­phy of ‘In­no­vate, but Se­curely’

Kuwait Times - - TECHNOLOGY -

KUWAIT: Sy­man­tec, the IT Se­cu­rity leader, an­nounced yes­ter­day that they will be ac­tively par­tic­i­pat­ing in the up­com­ing forth e-Gov­ern­ment Fo­rum (EGOV4) due to take place from 27 -29 Novem­ber at Ar­raya Ball­room of Court­yard Mar­i­otte Ho­tel. “We are de­lighted to be part of this an­nual tech­nol­ogy event in Kuwait, es­pe­cially that it is held un­der the pa­tron­age of His High­ness the Prime Min­is­ter Sheikh Jaber Mubarak Al-Ha­mad Al-Sabah. Sy­man­tec helps gov­ern­ments, busi­nesses, and in­di­vid­u­als safe­guard their IT in­vest­ments against the in­creas­ingly ma­li­cious cy­ber threats. “Through the am­bi­tious or­ga­ni­za­tional ef­forts of CAIT and Nouf-EXPO, EGOV has be­come a must-at­tend tech­nol­ogy event for ev­ery global tech­nol­ogy ven­dor, “said Gor­don Love, Vice Pres­i­dent Emerg­ing Mar­kets at Sy­man­tec.

Gor­don con­tin­ued to say, “the tech­no­log­i­cal ad­vance­ments we are wit­ness­ing to­day, both on a global and re­gional level, are noth­ing short of im­pres­sive, and they con­tinue to sur­pass what we thought we would be able to achieve by this mil­len­nia. In fact, IT spend­ing in the Mid­dle East is set to reach $212.9 bil­lion in 2016, a 37 per cent in­crease from the pre­vi­ous year. Closer to home, we’ve seen Kuwait mak­ing con­sid­er­able progress in be­com­ing an emerg­ing tech­nol­ogy and in­no­va­tion hub in the re­gion. The gov­ern­ment has done an ex­cel­lent job in re­spond­ing to the so­ci­ety’s level of tech savvi­ness and de­mand for stream­lined ser­vices, by im­ple­ment­ing projects that have im­proved gov­ern­ment pro­cesses vastly through its E-gov­ern­ment ser­vices.”

Gor­don added, “in­no­va­tion has be­come an un­stop­pable force from which we are feed­ing, and in the com­ing decade or so, the in­ter­net will likely dic­tate the way in which we live our lives. Ev­ery in­no­va­tion car­ries in­tended and un­in­tended con­se­quences. Ac­cord­ing to Sy­man­tec’s ISTR 2016 re­port, the world bought more than 1.4 bil­lion smart­phones in 2015. What we now call the In­ter­net of Things (IoT), will soon be­come the In­ter­net of Ev­ery­thing. In ad­di­tion, in the next few years there will be more con­nected de­vices than peo­ple in the world, and what a mo­men­tous time in his­tory that will be! Uses of IoT that were pre­vi­ously im­prac­ti­cal will in­creas­ingly be­come more prac­ti­cal, al­though the prob­lem with that type of vig­or­ous in­no­va­tion is that most of th­ese IoT de­vices will lack strin­gent se­cu­rity mea­sures and will be­come a de­lib­er­ate risk.”

In­te­gra­tion

The Vice Pres­i­dent Emerg­ing Mar­kets at Sy­man­tec com­mented, “the ma­te­ri­al­iza­tion of the IoT is ac­com­pa­nied with the emer­gence of added in­ter­net-con­nected de­vices and the in­te­gra­tion of var­i­ous in­dus­tries, such as ed­u­ca­tion, health, fi­nance, in­surance, and real-es­tate. While that may be con­ducive to our highly con­nected world, it also puts th­ese in­dus­tries at greater risk of be­ing hacked. By con­nect­ing ev­ery­thing, we have given cy­ber­crim­i­nals lever­age to at­tack not only one, but all as­pects of our so­ci­ety. The role that so­ci­ety will play in this dig­i­tal rev­o­lu­tion is un­ques­tion­ably un­der­stated. More­over, the Mid­dle East’s geopo­lit­i­cal po­si­tion and im­por­tance to the world econ­omy through trade, tourism and oil and gas re­sources have made the re­gion highly vul­ner­a­ble to a high vol­ume of IT se­cu­rity at­tacks and in turn, trig­gered rapid growth in its IT se­cu­rity mar­ket.

Com­ment­ing on Kuwait’s IT se­cu­rity chal­lenges, Grodon said, “Kuwait’s 2016 In­ter­net Se­cu­rity Threat Pro­file has jumped from a global rank of 70th in 2014 to 61st in 2015, in­di­cat­ing a higher global per­cent­age of se­cu­rity threats, in­clud­ing ma­li­cious code, spam, phish­ing hosts, web and net­work at­tacks, and bots from the coun­try. Buck­ing the global down­ward trend, Kuwait also ex­pe­ri­enced more bots with its global rank chang­ing 15 spots from rank 50th in 2014 to 35th in 2015. A bot is a type of mal­ware that al­lows an at­tacker to take con­trol over an af­fected com­puter. This means that Kuwait is be­com­ing a more at­trac­tive tar­get for threats. As the coun­try con­tin­ues to work to­wards be­com­ing a lead­ing global hub for tech­nol­ogy ad­vance­ments, this puts nu­mer­ous or­ga­ni­za­tions at risk should they choose not to up­grade se­cu­rity mea­sures. One of the key chal­lenges for th­ese or­ga­ni­za­tions is the ris­ing com­plex­ity of cy­ber-at­tacks, which is par­tially driven by the in­creas­ing pen­e­tra­tion of smart­phones and tablets and the shift to­wards cloud com­put­ing.”

Love added, “mov­ing for­ward, IT will tran­si­tion from hav­ing tech­ni­cal pur­pose to hav­ing so­ci­etal pur­pose. By that to­ken, in­no­va­tion must veer away from fast-paced mod­ern­iza­tion and to­wards ad­dress­ing the needs of our so­ci­ety and how to pro­tect our busi­nesses. As in­no­va­tion pushes tech­nol­ogy fur­ther, le­gacy de­vices are no longer able to hold en­hanced se­cu­rity mea­sures. The se­cu­rity in­dus­try must com­mit to in­te­grate the ad­vance­ments gen­er­ated by in­no­va­tion by build­ing se­cu­rity into de­vices and net­works. If th­ese mea­sures are not taken, cy­ber­crim­i­nals are given easy ac­cess into busi­nesses and con­sumers lives.”‘

Gor­don con­cluded his state­ment by say­ing, “as the world’s lead­ing cy­ber se­cu­rity com­pany, Sy­man­tec’s role within th­ese tech­no­log­i­cal ad­vance­ments is to re­main a pil­lar of vigor, aim­ing to con­tin­u­ously pur­sue and patch up what­ever dys­func­tions are found in th­ese ad­vance­ments. Our in­no­va­tion branches out of ac­cu­rately uti­liz­ing our ex­ten­sive as­sets to find so­lu­tions, where other com­pa­nies can­not. Help­ing our cus­tomers tackle their big­gest se­cu­rity chal­lenges re­mains a pri­or­ity in our mis­sion to se­cure and sup­port up­com­ing tech­nol­ogy hubs like Kuwait.”

Gor­don Love

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