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Cybersecurity drill focuses on threats in healthcare sector

28 Oct 2020

Oman is hosting the first international cybersecurity drill that focuses on cyberthreats and challenges resulting from COVID-19 pandemic in the healthcare sector.

The sultanate, represented by the Arab Regional Cybersecurity Center, hosted by the Ministry of Transport, Communications and Information Technology (MTCIT), is organising the drill in cooperation with the International Telecommunication Union (ITU) and a number of specialised international companies. 

The drill started on October 27 and will run till November 5. 

The drill aims to enhance cyber readiness to deal with cyber incidents that government organisations are exposed to in the participating countries through strengthening coordination and cooperation between Computer Emergency Readiness Team (CERT) centres around the world, as well as training and qualifying national talents to better deal with cyberthreats at the international level.

The Arab Regional Cybersecurity Center was established by ITU and the sultanate in December 2012 and is hosted, managed and operated by the Oman CERT of the Ministry of Transport, Communications and Information Technology. It aims to unify cooperation in the field of cybersecurity in the Arab region and strengthening the role of the ITU in building confidence and security in the use of information and communication technology in the Arab and regional countries.

Oman foiled a staggering 14bn cyberattacks over the course of last year, MTCIT revealed in its 2019 Annual Report.

In addition to uncovering and tackling 332 cybersecurity incidents in 2019, Oman thwarted 1,371,110,344 malicious attempts against government networks. 

In coordination with other government entities, the ministry also discovered 41,735 vulnerabilities, analysed and inspected 13,896 IP addresses, offered 91 security consulting services, completed 135 security assessments, and integrated 29 government web portals into the portal protection service, it said.

In 2019, Oman CERT discovered and handled 483,794 attempted service attacks, 152,480 web attacks, 152 malware attacks, 89,505 mobile attacks and 2,099,498 phishing attacks. 

‘The ministry always supports the security of government entities by providing network protection, information systems security, responding to cyberattacks, and threats related to government information security and generally providing security to the cyberspace in Oman,’ it said in a statement.


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