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Securing Oman’s critical infra from cyber threats is key: Experts

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Officials representing a number of cybersecurity agencies underlined the importance of safeguarding Oman’s critical infrastructure from cyber threats.

The calls came at the 3rd Oman Cyber Security Conference 2023 forum held on Wednesday under his auspices of Shaikh Abdulmalik bin Abdullah al Khalili, Chairman of the State Council. The forum was organised by Al Roya in partnership with the Electronic Defence Centre, Oman Data Park, and the Academy for Advanced Cybersecurity.

Held on the theme, "Cybersecurity Governance in the Infrastructure Sector", deliberations focused on the need to enhance operational readiness and response to cyber incidents and attacks targeting national infrastructure institutions, and to develop national capabilities in the field of cyber security.

Following welcome remarks by Hatem bin Hamad al-Taie, Secretary-General and Editor-in-Chief of Al-Roya newspaper, there were presentations by Dr Ali bin Salem al Balushi, Head of the Electronic Defense Center, and Eng Maqbool bin Salem al Wahaibi, CEO of Oman Data Park. This was followed by a tour of an exhibition showcasing the capabilities of 11 international companies and small and medium enterprises working in the field of electronic security.

According to Maqbool al Wahaibi, CEO of Oman Data Park, the Sultanate of Oman should develop adequate national capabilities to attract investments in the design and manufacture of cyber-security hardware and software system, rather than depend on imports alone.

Losses linked to electronic crimes and cyber threats amount to about $600 billion annually, and are incurred by individuals, institutions and countries that are in constant danger because of increasingly sophisticated attacks.

The Cyber Protection Centre in Oman Data Park provides a range of protection services based on the latest technologies. ODP has also contributed to protecting a number of institutions against cyber threats, he noted, adding that global spending on cybersecurity in 2022 amounted to more than $198 billion.

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