'Gov't strategy, public awareness needed to prevent cyber crime'
DEAD SEA, Apr 19, 2012 (Jordan Times - McClatchy-Tribune Information Services via COMTEX) --
As more Jordanians and Arabs become owners of Internet-connected devices, governments and regulators should formulate strategies to protect individuals and establishments from cyber attacks, ICT experts said on Wednesday.
Noting that the Middle East is one of the fastest growing regions in the world in terms of mobile and Internet penetration, they said a low level of awareness and weak adoption of security solutions against cyber crimes makes the region vulnerable to cyber threats.
"Cyber crimes and cyber wars are an issue debated by the public in Jordan nowadays. People are becoming more and more aware of the seriousness and risks of such crimes, but they still need to learn more about how to avoid them," Mohammad Alawneh, enterprise and data solutions manager at Umniah, said at the MENA Information Security Conference 2012.
Mohammed Omar, CEO of VirtuPort, which organised the conference, agreed.
"Nowadays, the number of people using their devices to connect to the net is increasing and hackers are targeting these devices," he said at the opening of the two-day conference.
"Most employees access databases at their companies using their devices such as tablets and smart phones, and this issue needs to be seriously addressed as such databases can be breached through these devices," he noted.
According to Alawneh, there were 286 million new cyber threats in 2011, which also witnessed a 93 per cent increase in the volume of attacks through the web.
About 1.3 per cent of Google's search results are infected, Alawneh said, adding that about 30,000 new malicious URLs are detected every day.
Ira Winkler, president of the Internet Security Adviser Group, said awareness is key to avoid falling victim to cyber crimes.
About 99 per cent of computer hacks are preventable, and knowledge is the key to putting an end to the impact of cyber crimes, Winkler said at the conference, which brought together experts in cyber security from across the world.
"People will always face risks and educating them is key in facing these cyber risks," he said.
As security breaches and cyber attacks and threats are changing every day, Richard Archdeacon, lead security strategist at Hewlett-Packard, said governments and regulators need to constantly address the issue of cyber security.
"Adoption of security solutions to thwart cyber attacks in the Middle East is still weak and it differs from one country to another, but there is a need for more focus on this issue," Archdeacon told The Jordan Times on the sidelines of the conference.
"Major organisations in Jordan and the rest of the region need to be ready to stand up to cyber attacks. There is awareness, but a lot needs to be done in this respect as the Middle East is a target area," he said.
___ (c)2012 the Jordan Times (Amman, Jordan) Visit the Jordan Times (Amman,
Jordan) at www.jordantimes.com Distributed by MCT Information Services
[ Back To TMCnet.com's Homepage ]