GISEC spotlights critical infrastructure, cybersecurity automation

The Middle East's biggest security conference opens this week as CIOs and CSOs deal with increasing IT infrastructure complexity and other security challenges brought on by the pandemic. Here's what to expect.


A massive move to remote work and rising geopolitical tensions that threaten critical infrastructure have caused many a sleepless night for CIOs and CSOs in the Middle East over the past year. They are also giving technology leaders gathering this week in Dubai at GISEC, the largest security conference in the Middle East, plenty to talk about.

Enterprises and government entities face increasingly complex IT infrastructure. While digital transformation projects were bringing business processes and consumer services online, the pandemic acted as an accelerant, for example leading the UAE to remove restrictions on internet communications applications such as Zoom and Skype, and causing Gulf area governments to impose rules, such as requiring companies to offer cashless payment options, that fuelled e-commerce.

"The pandemic broke all the shackles and we now exist in a perimeter-less network environment," said Veneeth Purushotaman, Group CIO at Aster DM Healthcare, based in Dubai. "This no doubt makes the topic of information security, data security all the more relevant and top of the mind. There can't be a more relevant topic than information security."

GISEC attendees will get a chance to hear what more than 180 speakers say about how to protect their network infrastructure, and check out security applications from over 150 different vendors.

While major vendors such as Google, Microsoft, Etisalat Digital, and Huawei will be participating in panel sessions and exhibiting at the conference, attendees will also get a chance to hear from a wide range of smaller companies offering specialized security technology as well as government security officials and researchers laying out best practices for defending complex IT infrastructure.

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