Hackers are targetting UAE, Saudi businesses' cloud services — survey
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Hackers are targetting UAE, Saudi businesses’ cloud services — survey

Hackers are targetting UAE, Saudi businesses’ cloud services — survey

The targetting of cloud infrastructure among corporates in these two countries is on the rise, according to a new survey.

Gareth van Zyl
UAE ransomware

Hackers are increasingly targeting the cloud infrastructure of companies in the UAE and Saudi Arabia, according to new research released from the Illumio Cloud Security Index.

Up to 54 per cent of cyber breaches in the UAE and Saudi Arabia now originate in the cloud, costing companies in these two countries up to $2.3m per year, say the researchers.

Illumio says the research was conducted independently by Vanson Bourne among 1,600 IT decision-makers who are responsible for cyber security across nine countries. Up to 100 of these decision makers are from the UAE and KSA.

The company says the findings of the research are particularly concerning when considering that over three quarters (76%) of respondents are running high-value applications in the cloud, while 100% of respondents admit to storing sensitive data in the cloud.

Another 98% of survey respondents said a cloud breach would impact their operations, with nearly half (46%) admitting that a cloud breach would make maintaining normal operations impossible.

Other findings indicated that 70% of respondents in the UAE and Saudi Arabia said they believe that cloud security in their own company is inadequate and represents a major risk. This is higher than the global average of 63%.

“We’re seeing rapid adoption of the cloud in the UAE and KSA, but as cloud adoption increases so do the risks,” said Ashraf Daqqa, Regional Director for META at Illumio. 

“As the attack surface becomes larger and more complex, it’s critical that organisations have real-time visibility over their applications and workloads, as well as the ability to rapidly contain threats in the cloud. By introducing ZTS as a part of a proactive Zero Trust security strategy, organisations can significantly improve their cyber resilience and reduce the cost and impact of cloud breaches.”

Respondents of the survey also indicated how they view service downtime as the biggest risk in the UAE (38 per cent, which is higher than the global average of 29 per cent). This was followed by loss of productivity (35 per cent), and lawsuits (33 per cent, a higher than the global average of 21 per cent).

About 89 per cent of respondents also said that improving cloud security is a high priority in the coming year.

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