Gulf economies vulnerable to cyberattacks

Bloomberg report follows Siemens estimating cyber attacks cost $1bn in 2017

Bloomberg Intelligence believes that “cyberattacks pose a significant threat to oil and gas companies” supply chains, and in turn, could impact oil-based economies such as the UAE and Saudi Arabia.

Last week Bloomberg hosted the cybersecurity and technology event, The Future of Cybersecurity: Risk, Readiness and Energy Resilience, at the Address Boulevard Hotel in Dubai. A study by its sponsor Siemens and the Ponemon Institute estimated that financial losses due to cyberattacks on the oil and gas industry were as much as $1 billion in 2017 and Bloomberg Intelligence notes a World Economic Forum survey which found that cyberattacks tops concerns for UAE businesses in 2018.

While cyberattacks are a major concern, the analysis remarks that the UAE is leading technology investment in the GCC, with Dubai launching a cyber-security strategy last year, focused on areas including enhancing awareness in public and private sectors, research and development (R&D), data privacy and business continuity.

“The UAE is also changing the way it invests to drive technology adoption by sponsoring and incubating start-ups through free trade zones; it has invested in blockchain to manage oil and refined product movements within Fujairah Oil Industry Zone, providing security and audit trails through the use of smart contracts,” said Bloomberg.

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