Refining & Petrochemicals Middle East
Augmenting cyber defences
It has become increasingly evident that the COVID-19 pandemic has fundamentally altered the modus operandi of many organisations and has accelerated digitalisation across all industries including oil & gas.
As the whole energy sector (including exploration, production, transportation and refining) is becoming increasingly digital to achieve revenue and efficiency gains, there is a corresponding need to identify cyber threats at their earliest stages, going beyond compliance regulations to secure operations.
According to refining and petrochemical industry experts, while online attacks are nothing new, what is different now is the scale of the risk and impact, which is directly related to the scale of digital connectivity and the massive ecosystem changes resulting from digitalisation, decentralisation and energy transition.
These cyber-attacks are becoming increasingly sophisticated, difficult to detect, and devastating. The key stakeholders in the downstream industry are very concerned that these cyber adversaries can not only disrupt the day-to-day operations but they also can bring the whole regional energy ecosystem to a halt.
Moreover, the gap between the capabilities of GCC organisations and their adversaries in cyberspace represents a tangible risk, and it is growing steadily. To close this gap, downstream companies need to take a strategic approach to rethink and revamp their cyber-security efforts.
Organisations can better defend their systems by taking a proactive approach and implementing precautionary measures to prevent any breaches from succeeding in the first place.