Dubai Electronic Security Centre launches new ‘TIRS’ cybersecurity platform at GISEC 2021

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The Dubai Electronic Security Centre (DESC) has launched a new cybersecurity platform, known as “TIRS”, which translates to “Shield” in English, at GISEC 2021, the 9th edition of the Middle East and Africa’s most influential and connected cybersecurity event, where is open until tomorrow at Dubai World Trade Centre (DWTC).

Speaking on the Government Stage, Ghaith Alsuwaidi, Deputy Director, Security Systems for the DESC, unveiled the new platform, designed entirely by a team of UAE nationals, which scans Dubai government websites to detect vulnerabilities within departments, delivers top-line data and issues a safety score out of five.

The platform also creates a threat report to inform participating entities on critical weaknesses, enabling them to take appropriate action to resolve any security gaps. Once the threat is identified and dealt with, the DESC will confirm the action taken within the TIRS system.

“TIRS is one of the key pillars monitoring Dubai’s cyberspace, through the Dubai Cyber Index Platform. We continuously scan government websites and based on the security of the government entities we give them a score out of five. It ensures the security of government websites and introduces competitiveness in terms of website security, all the time making Dubai’s cyberspace safer,” said Alsuwaidi, adding that the TIRS scoring will be a parameter on the Dubai Cyber Index by the end of this year.

Dr. Marwan Al-Zarouni, Director, Information Security Services, Dubai Electronic Security Centre (DESC), stated, “In Dubai, we are not isolated from the world when it comes to regulation, and we participate in global programmes and contribute to policy-making. We are one of the first cities to mandate that all cloud providers to any government bodies need to be compliant to our security standards.”

UAE-based cybersecurity advisor, Digital14, launched its Cyber Resilience Report: The UAE Threat Landscape 2021, during GISEC.

Cyber defence experts evaluated and analysed multiple digital assets in the UAE to give an in-depth understanding of the country’s threat landscape.

Digital14’s research revealed an exponential surge in phishing and ransomware with 1.1 million phishing attacks in 2020.

Joshua Knight, EVP Cyber Defence, Digital14, said, “Traditional cybersecurity approaches are no longer enough. Traditional perimeter-based network defence, for example, is obsolete. Not only does the perimeter no longer exist in our newly connected environments, but organisations must also recognise that their networks have most likely already been breached.”

Key findings of the report include: In 2020, 249,955 vulnerabilities were found in 800,315 unique instances Significant numbers of old vulnerabilities, some dating back to 2000, have yet to be remediated within UAE organisations’ networks. These can easily provide an entry point for devastating cyberattacks Ransomware increased with a 33 percent rise in the number of new ransomware families compared with 2019.

Al Jundi

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