KSA combats cyberthreats using latest technology

Information and cybersecurity expert Samer Omar
Updated 24 August 2019

KSA combats cyberthreats using latest technology

The 7th Middle East and North Africa Information Security Conference 2019 (MENAISC2019) will take place in Riyadh for the fourth consecutive year between Sept. 9-10, under the theme “Cyber Space, the New Frontier: Deception, Orchestration and Blackholes.”

Information and cybersecurity expert Samer Omar, CEO of VirtuPort’s MENAISC2019, said the increasing number of foreign cyberattacks on the Kingdom in the recent period have pushed for more institutionalization by developing national cadres specialized to combat these attacks. This step, he said, is in line with the Saudi Vision 2030, digital transformation initiatives and the development of e-governance.

“There is a significant qualitative improvement in the quality and number of gifted and talented Saudis working in cybersecurity and we will see in the near future more awareness and greater capacity in this vital sector by these young men and women,” said Omar. He added: “Today, we have specialized courses in cybersecurity in universities and other concerned institutions, and this in itself is a significant transformation that is important and demonstrates the depth of the Kingdom’s Vision 2030.”

Last year, Saudi Arabia recorded the highest number of cyberattacks among all Arab countries and ranked 17th globally in the same context.

The MENAISC2019 will also be hosting the Cyber Saber Hackathon in its third edition, which will attract students from all around Saudi Arabia to try their skills at hacking and defending a model smart city. 

Previous editions of the conference have attracted more than 300 participants from all over the Kingdom, as well as a large number of specialized brands and international media organizations.

The increasing cyberattacks on Saudi Arabia are due to its economy — ranked among the top 20 global economies — being one of the strongest in the Middle East, making Saudi companies and institutions a direct and indirect target of cyberattacks to disrupt their operations and seize their data and resources. 

In line with Vision 2030, the Saudi government is working to support the information technology sector, promote creative and innovative thinking for companies and protect their data and systems.

Omar underlined the need for continued focus on human capital, in addition to investments in tools and technologies required by companies and government agencies to secure themselves from cyber-related threats.


Dur Hospitality launches training academy for aspiring hoteliers

The announcement was made during a special event attended by the company’s CEO Sultan Al-Otaibi and a number of its senior officials.
Updated 15 September 2019

Dur Hospitality launches training academy for aspiring hoteliers

Saudi hospitality company Dur Hospitality has launched a training academy specialized in hospitality disciplines. The announcement was made during a special event attended by the company’s CEO Sultan Al-Otaibi and a number of its senior officials, in addition to a group of notable local and international hospitality sector professionals.
Dur’s CEO highlighted the importance of the academy, which he said aims to equip local talents interested in working in this sector with the necessary skills and qualifications. He added that the academy’s goals also include training current Dur employees and equipping them with knowledge and applied skills that they require to succeed. He elaborated that the academy will operate over two phases, with the first seeking to fulfill the company’s requirements and ensuring its staff is qualified to execute its future expansion strategy ongoing till 2020, while the second phase will contribute toward supplying the local hotel service sector with qualified and capable national talents.
Al-Otaibi said the academy’s ultimate objective is to equip trainees with world-class skills and provide them with guidance from local and international sector leaders to help them achieve excellence.
The academy will present a number of training programs that aim to raise the qualification and skill level among trainees, which will eventually reflect positively on the Saudi hospitality sector. These programs will cover three main parts, where the first part will include programs on leadership and supervision and will last for 12 months. It will cater to internal supervision and front desk employees, food and beverage production and service employees, and marketing and sales employees.
The second part will be dedicated to training new recruits and will last between three to six months. Likewise, it will include training front desk employees, internal supervision employees, food and beverage production and service employees, and marketing and sales employees.
The third part of the program will include shorter development courses that last between one and five days. It will cover topics including central management for internal and external operations, hotel management, customer service, and health and safety.
Established in 1976, Dur Hospitality has extensive record in managing, developing and operating a wide portfolio of hotels and residential compounds across the Kingdom.