Cyber attacks on govt websites being probed

In this Oct. 20, 2013 file photo, an Israeli works on a computer at the 'CyberGym' school in the coastal city of Hadera. (AP)
Updated 16 May 2016

Cyber attacks on govt websites being probed

RIYADH: The National Center for Cyber Security is investigating an attack on government websites in the Kingdom while a Shoura Council member has announced the introduction of a defense shield against such attacks.
In a statement, the cyber body said that it will announce the appropriate preventive measures that have been taken after completing its investigation. Many government and local bodies were targeted recently via emails known as “phishing mails.” “It’s advisable not to open suspicious email messages to avoid any damage that may occur,” it said.
Shoura member Awad Al-Asmari, meanwhile, told local media that the information technology committee of the council is preparing to introduce a new system to protect government websites.
“The system will be a strong deterrent for any party or individual who tries to disturb the public peace, hurt religious values and morals or invades the privacy of others,” Al-Asmari said. The Shoura member said some ministries and institutions are vulnerable to such attacks because they did not raise awareness among the employees on such issues and failed to update their websites.
Experts said that cyber attacks cost between SR300,000 and SR1 million to companies in the Kingdom every year. Some companies think that updating their systems and computers will fend off piracy attacks but it is not enough, they said.
“Big companies are on the receiving end when inside information is leaked,” said Haitham Abu-Aisha. “We have hired expert hackers to simulate piracy attacks on the websites of our clients so that we can test whether they are protected.” He said: “We will close this gap when we detect any access point that may destroy the website or help hackers to destroy the website.”
Electronic attacks in the Kingdom are often sourced from East European countries and Russia while political piracy attacks often come from Iran and Israel, said Abu-Aisha.


TheFace: Deema Al-Jaafari, Saudi entrepreneur

Updated 24 January 2020

TheFace: Deema Al-Jaafari, Saudi entrepreneur

  • I truly believe that if you set limits to your abilities you will never be able to exceed them
  • I founded Teak Woodwork in Alkhobar which has extended its services to cities including Jeddah and Riyadh

For nine years, I was the only child in my family. My father was a very independent, strong character and I learned a lot from him.

Having started from zero, he taught me to work hard, seek perfection and always believe that anything was possible if you set your mind to it. 

My mother was very easy going and encouraging. She really believed in me and was always supportive. There was a balance at home for me with these two different characters.

Some people might think that being an only child for quite some time, I was spoiled and dependent. But that was never the case and I have an amazing relationship with my little sister Maha; she is my best friend.

My father works in pharmaceuticals and is chairman of the board of directors at Al-Dawaa Medical Services.

My mother was a schoolteacher before entering the world of business, and my sister is a chemical engineer. Though we are a very diverse family, we all have an appreciation for art which is evident in our household. My mother is an artist and art collector too.

I do not have a role model; there are many people I look up to in the business world and in my social life. 

I studied software engineering and worked in that field for almost a year, but although I learnt a lot I wanted more from my career. Software engineering made me think and solve problems in a different way and it played a major role in how I operate in the field of business.

I worked at Al-Dawaa for almost two years and found that I was more attracted to business and marketing than the technical side of things. That is when I decided to take on the family business, Waleed Al-Jaafari Establishment.

I run PIECES, a retail store I founded in Alkhobar in 2012 and later opened a branch in Riyadh in 2014. Now, we are working to make it an online business too.

I noticed that there was a demand in the Kingdom for custom-made furniture, and although some stores offered the service there was little choice. So, I decided to provide high-quality furniture made in Saudi Arabia.

In 2015 I founded Teak Woodwork in Alkhobar which has extended its services to cities including Jeddah and Riyadh. My father has other branches dealing with different fields, but I opted to run the retail store and woodwork services. 

I truly believe that if you set limits to your abilities you will never be able to exceed them. Once you realize that there are no limits, all doors will open for you.