BA’s massive cyber fine sends out a clear signal, but does it drive home a point?

The UK’s Information Commissioner’s Office (ICO) intends to levy a record fine of GBP 183 million (US$ 230 million) on British Airways (BA) for a data breach that occurred last year, which compromised the data up to 500,000 customers. The sanction is a bold expression of the sweeping new powers assumed by cyber watchdogs across Europe as a result of the enactment of the General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR) last May.

The “big stick” approach to regulation has its place, though it should also be on lawmakers’ minds that not every breach will be a direct result of negligence or “poor security arrangements”

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Kaspersky places “cyber immunity” at the heart of its rebrand

Kaspersky Lab recently announced its rebranding to plain Kaspersky, with an accompanying evolution of its corporate logo. The firm says the revamp reflects the transformation occurring in cyber security as the Fourth Industrial Revolution sets in, and it was accompanied by the adoption of a new mission of “building a safer world.”

Refreshing a business’ mission and branding to better suit evolving circumstances is all well-and-good, though the proof of how effective it is will only be known in the months and years to come

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Hailing a heightened level of cyber resilience

While the Middle East region continues to assess the positive impact of the announced US$3.1 billion acquisition of UAE-based ride-hailing company Careem by global rival Uber, it is worth pausing for a moment to consider the implications of such a deal from a cyber security perspective.

Careem’s US$3.1 billion acquisition by Uber is a fantastic endorsement of digital services entrepreneurship in the Middle East, though cyber security must remain front-and-centre of the company’s ongoing evolution

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Proactive trusted transparency

Trust is not necessarily synonymous with cyber security, and this has been reiterated through the plethora of cyber breaches and data leakages that have been publicised in recent years. The lack of trust as it relates to allegations that organisations have wantonly sold, misappropriated or misdirected customers’ data without their knowledge or consent only exacerbates an already chronic issue.

In much the same way that realisation of the awesome and horrifying power of nuclear weapons preceded the establishment and ratification of the Non-Proliferation Treaty in the late 60s, so too must the dire consequences of a lacklustre and piecemeal approach to cyber security prompt an international move towards universal and heightened cyber security transparency

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No more tears?

It has been almost two years now since the world was gripped by a string of pervasive and damaging ransomware attacks, which fuelled mass paranoia and concern over the cost of technological advancement. Such levels of panic and speculation hadn’t been seen since the turn of the millennium and the Y2K system failure predictions and panic. From Petya to WannaCry and the creatively named NotPetya ransomware attacks, individuals, organisations, and nation states were awed and rightly fearful of the pace of dissemination and destructive capabilities wrought by the attacks.

What is the key to never shedding a tear over an incident like WannaCry again?

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News

Zain Bahrain signs up Ericsson for 5G

Zain Bahrain has selected Ericsson to build its 5G network in the kingdom, with the first commercial 5G services expected to go live before the end of 2019. Spanning Ericsson 5G Radio Access Network (RAN) and 5G Core products and solutions, the contract will see Zain Bahrain’s network modernized from LTE to 5G.

October marks a significant watershed for commercial 5G deployments

The month of October was a massive one for commercial 5G deployments globally, commencing with the 20-city network launched by Zain in Saudi Arabia at the beginning of the month, and ending with China’s three main service providers – China Mobile, China Unicom, and China Telecom – announcing the commercial availability of 5G services in […]

Faisal Al Bannai leads newly unveiled national defence entity, EDGE

Following media reports last month that Faisal Al Bannai, Founder and former Managing Director of UAE cyber security firm DarkMatter, was looking to exit the business altogether by year-end, last week he made his first public appearance as CEO and Managing Director of a newly created national defence technology-focused conglomerate called EDGE.

Zain Saudi Arabia launches region’s largest 5G network to date

In the most significant early bet on the long-term viability of 5G technology in the Middle East, Zain Saudi Arabia announced the launch of 5G in the Kingdom, with the first phase of the rollout being implemented through a network of 2,000 towers that cover an area of more than 20 cities.  This massive rollout […]

End of an era as Osman Sultan steps down as du CEO in 2020

UAE telco Emirates Integrated Telecommunications Company (du) has announced the departure of long-standing CEO, Osman Sultan, to be replaced by Johan Dennelind, who is set to assume the role early next year. Sultan has been the CEO of du since its launch in 2006.

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