Kaspersky shares IT security recommendations for businesses in 2021

Remote work will catalyze a shift from the corporate perimeter concept to micro-office security certification. Outsourcing of IT and cybersecurity functions will be crucial to solve expertise shortages and save budgets. To coordinate managed service providers along with using multiple cloud services, cloud security and management skills will become a ‘must have’. These and other cybersecurity challenges and trends will be among those that businesses will have to manage this year, according to a new Kaspersky report.

A shift to remote work, financial constraints due to economic recession and the growth of cyber threats due to the global pandemic will affect the day to day role of cybersecurity professionals in 2021. Understanding the challenges but also perceiving opportunities in IT and IT security management is key for companies to maintain their protection. The recent Kaspersky report, “Plugging the gaps: 2021 corporate IT security predictions” suggests advice for each role related to cybersecurity, including CEOs or business owners, CISOs, SOC team leads and IT managers. Here are some of the main trends to monitor:

  • Protecting the perimeter is no longer enough – home office assessment and certification will be needed. There should be tools to scan the level of security in a workplace – from the presence of software vulnerabilities to connecting to an unreliable or unprotected Wi-Fi hotspot. It will also require wider adoption of VPN, privileged access management, multifactor authentication systems, the implementation of stricter monitoring, and the updating of existing contingency and emergency plans.
  • Transition to a service model will enable required levels of IT and IT security with lower investments. According to Kaspersky’s survey, seven-in-10 72% businesses in the META region said they already plan to use a managed service provider (MSP) or managed security service provider (MSSP) in the next 12 months[1]. This is for good reason as the service model helps to minimize capital investments and transition business costs from CapEx to OpEx.
  • Training for internal IT security specialists should incorporate management skills. Cybersecurity professions split into very narrow specializations, meaning that hiring staff for each specific role may be too expensive. This is where outsourcing can help plug the gap. However, businesses that outsource key cybersecurity components still need to focus on developing management skills for their in-house teams to handle those outsourced functions.
  • There will be an increased reliance on cloud services, making dedicated management and protection measures necessary. The survey showed thatin 2020, employees in 91% of enterprises and 95% of SMBs in the META region used non-corporate software and cloud services such as social networks, messengers or other applications. This is unlikely to change when staff return to the office. To ensure that any corporate data is kept under control, better visibility over cloud access will be necessary. IT security managers will need to align themselves with this cloud paradigm and develop skills for cloud management and protection.

Along with the introduction of new cybersecurity practices, the quality of tools that enable these changes will be equally important. Quality of protection and seamless manageability are key when choosing cybersecurity solutions. We have seen two important changes in what customers expect from corporate cybersecurity offerings. Firstly, the quality of protection is no longer up for discussion – now it’s a ‘must have’. Another major trend is that deep integration between various components of corporate security, ideally from a single vendor, now plays a bigger role. For instance, there was a long-held belief in the industry that various specialized solutions from various vendors can help create the best combination for protection. Now, organizations are looking for a more unified approach with maximum integration between different security technologies,” says Alexander Moiseev, Chief Business Officer at Kaspersky.

Check the full report ‘Plugging the gaps: 2021 corporate IT security predictions’ for more predictions.

[1] According to Kaspersky Global Corporate IT Security Risks Survey (ITSRS), conducted across 31 countries in June 2020. Throughout the report, a total of 5,266 IT business decision-makers were interviewed.

Azraq Volunteer Members Remove 137.9KG of Debris From Lulu Island

Four of Azraq’s volunteer members, ventured out to Lulu Island in Abu Dhabi yesterday to undertake a clean up from the seabed and around the island itself, removing 137.9kg of debris, mainly plastic water bottles and fishing debris.

This initiative was undertaken with its newest partner, The Captain’s Club which provided a boat and captain for the activity. 

Aside from ocean clean ups, Azraq will utilize the partnership to expand on its coral reef survey program in Abu Dhabi, with an eye on Dubai also.

Natalie Banks, Founder of Azraq, stated that the partnership with The Captain’s Club came at the perfect time, through a connection from one of Azraq’s members and partly fulfilled a long-time dream of the conservationist, to have regular access to boats for water activities.

“We have long had a dream of having access to a boat in order to undertake additional marine conservation activities, so the team at The Captain’s Club absolutely made our wishes come true when they agreed to partner with us” Ms Banks said.

“There is a great deal of debris on the sea floor which I see regularly as a scuba diving instructor, and in order to conserve and protect our local waterways, we need to not only look at stopping the debris from entering the waterways, but assist to remove it also.”

Azraq has a long history of beach cleans, which the team will continue to do wherever possible, even when having to accommodate to social distancing regulations. Nonetheless, the ocean cleans are proving to offer greater reward for effort, with larger amounts of debris found.

“Organising the removal of debris from the seabed requires a great deal of organization and logistics, and we could not be happier with the support that The Captain’s Club provides us,” Ms Banks said.

“In addition to The Captain’s Club, we are extremely grateful for the support from the Environment Agency Abu Dhabi and Tadweer which sent a boat to Lulu Island to collect the debris afterwards.”

The clean ups are being undertaken by approved members. Anyone interested in joining Azraq is encouraged to do so by visiting their website or by sending an email to admin@azraqme.org

Timeless Appeal

We have curated some timeless pieces for your watch collection this month. Adorn your wrist with watches based on craftmanship and the perfect combination of style and functionality. Eric Richard brings you a selection of timepieces that pay homage to the past and yet remain relevant for collectors of all ages.

Abu Dhabi Airports launches the region’s first PCR testing laboratory located within an Airport

Abu Dhabi Airports, in partnership with Pure Health and Tamouh Healthcare, has launched the region’s first PCR testing laboratory within an airport. The new state of the art RT-PCR lab offers fast COVID-19 testing within the Abu Dhabi International Airport (AUH) to facilitate the resumption of air travel and assist with quarantine tracking procedures.

Designed to ensure the health, safety, and wellbeing of travellers and staff at Abu Dhabi International Airport, the new Real Time Polymerase Chain Reaction (RT-PCR) testing process is free for arriving passengers and is one of the fastest in the world, with results available in approximately 90 minutes and the capacity to test more than 20,000 travellers and staff per day.

The establishment of the PCR testing laboratory falls in line with the directives and vision of His Excellency Sheikh Mohammed bin Hamad bin Tahnoon Al Nahyan, Chairman of Abu Dhabi Airports, to contain the spread of COVID-19 while continuing to deliver a smooth and seamless travel experience at Abu Dhabi International Airport.

Shareef Hashim Al Hashmi, Chief Executive Officer of Abu Dhabi Airports, said: “Through partnering with Pure Health and Tamouh Healthcare, Abu Dhabi International Airport is now able to offer travellers state-of-the-art rapid testing services delivered by a dedicated laboratory facility. The introduction of the RT-PCR COVID-19 testing is a milestone achievement in our ongoing efforts to facilitate the safe resumption of international air travel and support the recovery of the aviation industry.”

“The fact that this is the first airport in the region to contain its own dedicated PCR testing laboratory is testament to our commitment at Abu Dhabi Airports to continuously innovate and look for new ways to deliver a safe, smooth and seamless travel experience for all our passengers. The new fast testing facility at Abu Dhabi International Airport, developed in partnership with many of our stakeholders, will not only enable passengers to confidently travel to Abu Dhabi, but significantly enhance the efficiency of our operations while supporting global efforts to curb the spread of COVID-19,” added Al Hashmi.

All passengers arriving at Abu Dhabi International Airport through both terminals 1 and 3 will be tested at the AUH PCR testing facility. Results of the COVID-19 tests will be shared by SMS and WhatsApp, as well as being available on the Alhosn mobile application. Passengers who receive a negative PCR test and are from the list of ‘green’ countries, outlined by the government of Abu Dhabi, will not have to self-isolate. Those not from the list of ‘green’ countries will have to self-isolate for a period of ten days, and will require a quarantine wristband fitted at the PCR testing tent attached to the airport.

Participants in the National Vaccination Programme and Phase III clinical trials who have an identification mark (letter E or golden star) on Al Hosn app are exempted from self-quarantine procedures. Passengers transiting through the airport will not be tested prior to departing for their final destinations.

The lab, being developed and operated by Pure Health – the region’s largest laboratory operator – and the healthcare and passenger facility, being developed by UAE-based Tamouh Healthcare, will provide results in approximately 90 minutes and will have the capacity to test more than 20,000 travellers per day. The 4,000 square metre facility will operate around the clock with up to 190 staff.

The launch of fast COVID-19 testing services follows Abu Dhabi Airports’ introduction of a comprehensive range of health and safety measures at Abu Dhabi International Airport, including a specially trained team of Wellness Ambassadors equipped to support passengers by answering common questions relating to keeping healthy during travel, encouraging social distancing, and providing Personal Protective Equipment (PPE).

In addition, the airport has deployed touch-less elevator technology, SterixEco Gates sterilisation tunnels, thermal scanning cameras, as well cameras with facial recognition capabilities that alert staff if passengers or visitors to the airport are displaying symptoms of COVID-19 or not wearing facemasks.

For the latest COVID-19 information at Abu Dhabi International Airport, please visit: abudhabiairport.ae/en/announcement