SUSTAINABLE IT

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SUSTAINABLE IT

Why your business should care

ISSUE 50 \ FEBRUARY 2023

14

WHY YOUR BUSINESS SHOULD CARE

40 PRODUCTS

6 NEWS

GARTNER PREDICTS NEARLY HALF OF CYBERSECURITY LEADERS WILL CHANGE JOBS BY 2025

AVEVA LAUNCHES NEW VERSION OF MANUFACTURING EXECUTION SYSTEM SOFTWARE

ASTROLABS CELEBRATES SAUDI INNOVATION TO MARK ITS 10TH ANNIVERSARY IN RIYADH

CONTENTS 12 THE INDUSTRIAL METAVERSE 18 A WINNING DEVOPS INNOVATION STRATEGY 20 THE MOVE TO SASE 22 IS YOUR BOARD READY FOR NEW CYBER REGULATION? 24 CREATING CONNECTIONS PUBLISHED BY INSIGHT MEDIA & PUBLISHING LLC 36 12 26 THE FUTURE OF CUSTOMER EXPERIENCE 28 THE NEW NORMAL IN MANUFACTURING 30 CHANGING THE RULES OF THE GAME 36 BUILDING A SMART FACTORY 38 WHY YOU NEED A CHIEF ZERO TRUST OFFICER
SUSTAINABLE IT
3 CXO INSIGHT ME FEBRUARY 2023

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CREATING SUSTAINABLE SUCCESS

In the last two to three years, we’ve seen how regional enterprises implemented new technologies and processes to improve business operations and add value to customers. The adoption of digital technologies has sped up as organisations rethink how they use technology, people, and processes to create new business models and new revenue streams. This month, we hosted the fifth edition of the CXO 50 Awards, which have become a gold standard for IT innovation and business transformation.

While going through a barrage of nominations, our team zeroed in on a common theme across all these nominations – today, IT leaders are responsible for business strategy and identifying new competitive differentiation opportunities. Last year was indeed turbulent, but it was exciting for IT leaders because technology has evolved as the biggest business enabler. It is hard to imagine any business that is not digital today, and this came to the fore at the panel discussion that I moderated at the awards event. Digital

transformation could be a never-ending process, and it is not something that CIOs can drive by just themselves. CIOs must partner with other C-suite colleagues and develop a shared vision to accelerate innovation.

Regarding emerging technologies, the panelists unanimously agreed the cloud has become the cornerstone of digital transformation initiatives and expect increased adoption of automation technologies in enterprises. With digital technologies being embedded into all aspects of a business, the CIO’s biggest challenge this year is aligning IT with business and building resilience against the backdrop of a gloomy global economic outlook. Another area is sustainability, which has opened up new opportunities for tech leaders to take a leading role and manage their organisations’ journey to sustainable business tech. In this edition, you will read about sustainable IT and why you should care, especially as the UAE gears up to host the next United Nations Climate Change Conference edition.

EDITORIAL
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While the publisher has made all efforts to ensure the accuracy of information in this magazine, they will not be held responsible for any errors

GARTNER PREDICTS NEARLY HALF OF CYBERSECURITY LEADERS WILL CHANGE JOBS BY 2025

By 2025, nearly half of cybersecurity leaders will change jobs, 25% for different roles entirely due to multiple work-related stressors, according to Gartner.

“Cybersecurity professionals are facing unsustainable levels of stress,” said Deepti Gopal, Director Analyst, Gartner. “CISOs are on the defence, with the only possible outcomes that they don’t get hacked or they do. The psychological impact of this directly affects decision quality and the performance of cybersecurity leaders and their teams.”

Given these dynamics as well as the massive market opportunities for cybersecurity professionals, talent churn poses a significant threat for security teams. Gartner research shows that compliance-centric cybersecurity programmes, low executive support and subpar industry-level maturity are all

AVEVA LAUNCHES NEW VERSION OF MANUFACTURING EXECUTION SYSTEM SOFTWARE

AVEVA announced the release of AVEVA Manufacturing Execution System 2023, which offers to cut the costs and complexities of multi-site Manufacturing Execution System (MES) solutions.

The latest version of AVEVA Manufacturing Execution System (MES) will help standardise and introduce best practice more quickly and at scale which in turn will improve operational efficiency and sustainability. The new AVEVA Manufacturing Execution System 2023 also promotes increased supply chain resilience and agility with unified visibility, reporting and KPIs across multi-site operations.

Traditionally, MES solutions have

indicators of an organisation that does not view security risk management as critical to business success. Organisations of this type are likely to experience higher attrition as talent leaves for roles where their impact is felt and valued.

“Burnout and voluntary attrition are outcomes of poor organisational culture,” said Gopal. “While eliminating stress is an unrealistic goal, people can manage incredibly challenging and stressful jobs in cultures where they’re supported.

Gartner predicts that by 2025, lack of talent or human failure will be responsible for over half of significant cyber incidents. The number of cyber and social engineering attacks against people is spiking as threat actors increasingly see humans as the most vulnerable point of exploitation.

A Gartner survey conducted in May and June 2022 among 1,310 employees revealed that 69% of employees

have bypassed their organisation’s cybersecurity guidance in the past 12 months. In the survey, 74% of employees said they would be willing to bypass cybersecurity guidance if it helped them or their team achieve a business objective.

“Friction that slows down employees and leads to insecure behavior is a significant driver of insider risk,” said Paul Furtado, VP Analyst, Gartner.

To confront this rising threat, Gartner predicts that half of medium to large enterprises will adopt formal programmes to manage insider risk by 2025, up from 10% today.

The new release embraces worker shift management and includes security enhancements to support multi-site MES data centre deployments across different time zones, languages and cultures.

been used locally in plants – requiring robust individual IT infrastructure and systems – significantly increasing total cost of ownership. The new update will provide support for multi-site solutions with a single MES centrally deployed in a corporate data centre.

Automated production processes and Industrial Internet of Things (IIoT) devices are connected with a small footprint of computing assets that collect data “at the edge” of each plant and send it to the central MES.

Keith Chambers, Vice President Operations Management Software, AVEVA, said: “Amid a backdrop of continued disruption and rising costs, our customers are under pressure to close the business to plant collaboration gap, and improve the efficiency of their manufacturing networks.

“The new AVEVA Manufacturing Execution System 2023 release enables the business to drive digital transformation simultaneously and consistently across multiple connected plants. It will provide a single version of the truth and promote agile supply chain management. In the postpandemic era, manufacturers’ success will be defined by their ability to be agile and resilient in the face of change.”

NEWS
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ZOHO ANNOUNCES AED 100 MILLION INVESTMENT FOR EXPANSION

students and 300+ companies.

“Because of the global economic conditions, more and more companies are moving towards digitalisation and choosing unified platforms that help them break data silos, and bring forth contextual real-time insights that enable them to make quick decisions and be nimble to adapt to changing market conditions. Zoho has its own technology stack that has been built from ground up through relentless R&D over 26 years. We offer a unified platform for all business needs from customer experience and marketing to finance and enterprise collaboration, with our apps being customisable, integrable and extendible. This makes Zoho an ideal choice for businesses of all sizes,” added Vembu.

Zoho announced that in the five years since starting its operations in the UAE, which serves as its Middle East and Africa headquarters, the company has grown 10 times in the country, with a 5-year CAGR of 60%. On the sidelines of Zoholics Dubai, the annual user conference of the company, Zoho’s CEO and Co-founder, Sridhar Vembu, also announced investment of AED 100 million for expansion in the country.

In 2022, Zoho grew by 45% in the UAE, which was the second-highest growing country globally. It has also doubled its employee base in the UAE as well as across the MEA region in the past year, by hiring locally as per its ‘transnational localism’ policy of being locally rooted while staying globally connected. The partner network in the country grew by 50% in 2022, helping Zoho serve its customers better.

“As part of our transnational localism strategy, when we expand into a region, we want to give back to the local community and be rooted in the local culture as we grow,” said Sridhar Vembu. “Over the past five years, we

have invested in local hiring, growing our partner network, adding Arabic support in our products, and integrating with local payment gateways to adapt our solutions for the local market. We will continue to invest in growing our footprints in the country through hirings, upskilling programmes, localisation of products, integrating our solutions with local vendors, and partnering with organisations to help local businesses in their digitalisation efforts.”

Zoho has partnered with various organisations such as Department of Economy and Tourism (DET) and Dubai Culture in order to make enterprise technology available to businesses of all sizes. It has also partnered with educational institutes like Manipal Academy of Higher Education (MAHE) and Emirates Academy of Hospitality Management (EAHM) to offer upskilling courses. Since 2020, Zoho has helped over 3500 SMEs gain access to its cloud technology through various partnerships, investing AED 20 million in wallet credits. It also invested AED 4.5 million in upskilling initiatives for imparting digital literacy to over 200+

The top products leading Zoho’s growth in the UAE are Zoho One (a unified platform of over 50 products), Zoho Books (FTA-approved VATcompliant accounting software), Zoho CRM (customer experience platform), Zoho Workplace (enterprise collaboration platform), and Zoho Creator (low-code development platform). The industries from where the most demand is coming are IT services, wellness/fitness, real estate, manufacturing and retail sectors.

Popular Pizza outlet, Papa Johns has been using Zoho’s solutions (Zoho People Plus, Zoho Expense and Zoho Creator) to streamline their HR (staff attendance), expense and payroll management across 70+ outlets in the UAE, Saudi Arabia and other countries in the Middle East region. “We finalised Zoho after evaluating several well-known platforms available in the market. It is user-friendly, easy to customise based on our unique needs and compatible with almost all the devises and other software. It also provides a robust security system. Its scalability is amazing as we can continue to expand and grow across the region, while using the same software. I must also say that the team is very supportive and always available when we need them,” said Albrey James, Head of HR & Administration, Papa Johns.

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RIVERBED ANNOUNCES UPDATES TO LEADERSHIP TEAM IN GCC

Riverbed announced key updates to its GCC leadership team as it looks to further expand its market share in the rapidly emerging Unified Observability space, while further strengthening its position as the leader in enterprise Acceleration. The company has promoted Ramzi Bsaibes to Regional Sales Director, Gulf and appointed Mohammed Kiki as its new Regional Director for Saudi Arabia.

Both Bsaibes and Kiki will report directly to Mena Migally, Regional Vice President, Emerging EMEA at Riverbed, who said, “Throughout 2022, we have enabled regional organisations to take back control of their IT environments by transforming overwhelming amounts of data into actionable insights that help drive performance and improve digital experiences. As organisations now come under pressure to optimise every investment, this same insight will empower them to unlock the full potential of their IT infrastructure. With their in-depth experience, both Ramzi and Mohammed will offer our enterprise customers the expert guidance they need to achieve this impactful outcome.”

Over the course of his 18+ year career

in the regional IT industry, Bsaibes has held roles in Project Management, Technical Sales and Enterprise Sales. He has a proven track record in enabling large enterprises and government entities across multiple verticals – including Security and Defence, Oil and Gas, and BFSI – to identify and deploy technologies that best serve their business objectives. Most recently, Bsaibes held the position of Senior Sales Manager at Riverbed, where he developed a growth strategy for the Gulf markets while actively evolving, reshaping, and managing the company’s regional sales team.

“In my new role, my vision is to capitalise on the tremendous opportunity presented to Riverbed in the Gulf region with a focus on driving adoption of our market leading Unified Observability portfolio, Riverbed Alluvio. Together with my team, I will look to execute on this growth strategy while emphasising four core values – customer centricity, accountability, teamwork, and operational excellence,” said Ramzi Bsaibes, Regional Sales Director, Gulf, at Riverbed.

With Moueen Zahreddine taking on a newly established role as Strategic Accounts Director, focusing on some of

the most prestigious customers across the Middle East, Riverbed has appointed Mohammed Kiki as the new Regional Director for Saudi Arabia. Kiki will lead the company’s expansion in the Kingdom, spearheading the growth of its local team with strategic hires, and strengthening its channel ecosystem. He has over 21+ years of experience in managing operations for leading technology companies in Saudi Arabia. Having held leadership positions at technology companies including Citrix, Oracle, NetApp, and Cisco, Kiki has developed a wealth of experience in driving the adoption of best-of-breed technologies that have a significant impact across the country’s digital landscape.

Commenting on his appointment, Mohammed Kiki, Regional Director for Saudi Arabia, said, “The incredible appetite for digital innovation in Saudi Arabia has very recently been evidenced with a record-breaking turnout at LEAP this year. As the Kingdom progresses boldly forward with Vision 2030, Riverbed – with our market leading Unified Observability and Acceleration solutions – is strongly positioned to be a key enabler of the ongoing digital revolution. I am proud to take on this leadership role at an organisation that is ready to invest and demonstrate its firm commitment to its Saudi customers.”

NEWS
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NEW HIRES MAY SPARK INCREASE IN PHISHING ATTACKS IN 2023, PREDICTS MIMECAST

Malicious AI tools, phishing attacks aimed at new hires, skills pressures, work-fromhome complexities and an ongoing rise in cyberthreats such as ransomware will challenge organisations and their cybersecurity efforts in the coming year. These are the top predictions for the Middle East in 2023, from email and collaboration security company, Mimecast.

Organisations are already preparing for new waves of cyber-attacks this year. Traditional attacks such as phishing and ransomware are set to continue, along with more sophisticated social engineering attacks that are increasingly hard to combat. Coupled with the increased availability of complex AI tools, a new wave of attacks is set to plague organisations who are not equipped to quickly detect and deter multifaceted cyber-threats.

To help organisations across the region better understand where they should invest time and resources to improve their cyber resilience against a broad range of attack types, various Mimecast experts have provided their key insights into what the 2023 threat landscape may hold:

New jobs attract new problems

With new employees joining companies at the beginning of the year, there will be an increase in phishing attacks that are engineered to look like congratulatory emails from senior executives. New hires may receive an influx in emails that masquerade as LinkedIn connection requests or onboarding information but are in fact fake landing pages to harvest credentials for account takeover fraud. To protect employees, organisations will need to provide thorough security protocols and offer regular, ongoing cyber awareness training.

Home security is a new priority

As a significant portion of the workforce continues to work from home, security teams face a new area of concern. The generally lower levels of security for home Wi-Fi networks connected to corporate devices and laptops makes it easier for attackers to potentially infiltrate corporate networks. In 2023, expect a shift in companies rolling out tighter BYOD policies, or offering separate home networking equipment for all employees working from home.

The evolution of ransomware

Combating ransomware will continue to be a top priority for organisations, and while the complexity of these attacks has increased, most businesses’ ransomware defences have not evolved to keep up. Seventy-five percent of businesses in the UAE reported they experienced a ransomware attack in the past year, with 44% reporting a loss in revenue due to a ransomware attack, according to Mimecast’s State of Ransomware Readiness 2022 report. Greater investment into teams, tools and technologies is needed: 94% of global cybersecurity leaders believe more budget is required to combat ransomware.

Keeping an eye on AI

There is growing concern over the use of AI to enhance the effectiveness of cyberattacks. In 2023, threat actors are likely to take social engineering to the next level, levering the growing power of

AI voice cloning technology to enhance their impersonation attacks. The use of audio deepfakes will be combined with compromised email and collaboration accounts to improve the hit rate of attacks.

Strength in numbers

With most security teams stretched thin as they protect organisations and data against attack, expect a continued migration of security teams outsourcing various components of their security practice to MSPs, MSSPs, and SOC-as-aService providers. Larger MSSPs oversee hundreds and thousands of customers, making it more likely that they have seen alerts before and know how to deal with them, which is not always the case for inhouse teams. Cybersecurity technology companies will improve their integration with MSSPs: Mimecast for example integrates with more than 50 MSSPs.

The need for cybersecurity skills

The skills gap in Cybersecurity –particularly in AI/ML expertise – will probably be felt more acutely in 2023. Last year, newsworthy attacks were typically very targeted, methodically planned, but still very manual in nature. Customers will be looking for cybersecurity products that can effectively protect against a multi-stage attack like this. But to detect these attacks, the existing detection systems need to be harmonised effectively and turned into a meta-system. As a result, cybersecurity companies will be looking for more AI/ML expertise to design and implement these meta-systems, in an already tight labour market.

“Cyber risks will continue to get more sophisticated in 2023, and organisations’ protective measures must adapt accordingly to stay ahead of threat actors,” says Werno Gevers, regional manager, Mimecast Middle East. “The use of non-corporate devices and email and collaboration tools due to continued hybrid work, will cause greater risk exposure. Organisations need to ensure they are always able to work protected, by implementing security measures that effectively protect communications, data and people.”

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ASTROLABS CELEBRATES SAUDI INNOVATION TO MARK ITS 10TH ANNIVERSARY IN RIYADH

industries and talent capabilities in the kingdom. To date, AstroLabs has expanded more than 300 high-growth companies to Saudi Arabia and built an extensive talent network.

AstroLabs celebrated its 10th anniversary with the ecosystem at its spaces in Riyadh, Al Malqa. The regional celebration brought together Saudi’s innovation pioneers, including H.E. Dr. Nabeel Koshak, CEO and board member of SVC, along with key ecosystem partners, including the Ministry of Investment in Saudi Arabia, the Ministry of Communication and Information Technology, and the Royal Commission for AlUla.

The event, which welcomed 200+ of Saudi’s most anticipated entrepreneurs, hosted curated talks and panels showcasing the journey of Saudi to becoming the fastest-growing global hub for technology, business, and innovation. The night kicked off with an exclusive presentation by AstroLabs CEO Roland Daher on a decade of ecosystem building in Saudi Arabia, demonstrating the immense potential of connecting stakeholders in building competitive local markets and accelerating the digital transformation of the Kingdom.

“AstroLabs has come a long way since launching the ‘Scaling Online for Startups’ programme ten years ago. From accelerating 100 entrepreneurs across MENA in 2013, becoming the first international incubator in Saudi Arabia in 2018, and piloting the Forward KSA Accelerator programme, to helping build an agile economy in AlUla by accelerating the growth of its SMEs today.” Daher stated, “enabling the digital and entrepreneurial

excellence of the Saudi ecosystem ahead of a historic transformation, such as the Saudi Vision 2030, has been an exciting decade in the making.”

The event was headlined by an exclusive fireside chat between the CEO and Board Member of SVC H.E. Dr. Nabeel Koshak and the Founding Partner of AstroLabs, Muhammed Mekki. The conversation was filled with insights into the intricacies of building ecosystems in Saudi Arabia, reflecting on the early days of Wadi Makkah and AstroLabs. Mekki said, “H.E Dr. Nabeel has been a vital supporter of AstroLabs since its launch and is a focal point to the growth of Saudi innovation to what it is today. It is ecosystem builders like H.E Dr. Nabeel that have kept our mission in Saudi on the right track over the past decade, and we are proud to be marking this milestone together.”

The Saudi Vision 2030 presents an exceptional opportunity for the entrepreneurship ecosystem in Saudi Arabia to become a leading player in the digital economy worldwide. AstroLabs has been working with entrepreneurs and key stakeholders, including government entities, multinationals, and SMEs, to build the digital readiness for this transformation over the past decade.

Focused on building local competencies through digital upskilling, entrepreneurship, acceleration programmes, and inviting global participation via its “Saudi Expansion” division, AstroLabs has played a vital role in accelerating the growth of

The company has also launched various programmes aimed at SME ecosystem building, such as the Vibes AlUla SME Enablement Programme in partnership with the Royal Commission for AlUla and the PepsiCo Scale-up accelerator programme in partnership with Pepsi Co and CODE. These programmes equip small businesses with the skills and knowhow needed to accelerate their growth, kickstart their digital transformation, and allow them to become vital economic contributors over the upcoming years.

The celebration also featured a panel consisting of AstroLabs community members who have expanded with the company to Saudi Arabia and participated in its acceleration programmes. The panel invited Iyad Al-Saady, Country Director of Augustus Media, Tarek Bayaa, CoFounder of Bayzat, Abdullah Bin Shamlan, Co-Founder of Speero, and Rahul Arya, Managing Partner at Artefact, to share their experiences in building disruptive solutions and navigating the future of the Saudi digital offering. The event was attended by guests of honor and AstroLabs’ strategic partners, including the Ministry of Investment in Saudi Arabia (MISA), the Ministry of Communications and Information Technology (MCIT), and the Royal Commission for Alula (RCU).

The celebration of AstroLabs’ 10th anniversary marked a significant milestone in the journey toward building thriving ecosystems in Saudi Arabia. The gathering of experts, stakeholders, and community members shed light on the critical role of enablers like AstroLabs in developing the global competitive edge of the local market. AstroLabs is playing a vital role in driving economic diversification and growth in line with Saudi Vision 2030, and the success stories shared at the event serve as a testament to the impact of AstroLabs’ efforts in shaping the future of the Saudi tech landscape.

NEWS
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IT Asset Management Cost Optimization OT Management & Security Infrastructure Management & Monitoring Device & Network Protection Email, Web Security &MFT Identity Education & Awareness Data Protection Critical Infrastructure Security Value Added Cybersecurity & IT Distributor For more information call us @ META HQ: +971 4 285 7366 & Saudi Arabia: 800 8500 851 YOUR 360 CYBERSECURITY PROVIDER o

THE INDUSTRIAL METAVERSE

HIGHLY-OPTIMISED BUSINESSES ARE ABLE TO FUNCTION SEAMLESSLY AMID THE PHYSICAL AND VIRTUAL WORLDS, WRITES SIMON BENNETT, GLOBAL HEAD OF RESEARCH AT AVEVA

We are living amid times of great change.

Global factors such as political unrest, economic inflation and the ongoing war in Ukraine are stoking market volatility. What’s more, these pressing factors are playing out against the stark backdrop of climate change. The global effort to reduce carbon emissions is making progress, but continuous pressure must be applied in order to meet challenging targets in line with the Paris Agreement. Fresh from COP27 Sharm el-Sheikh, Egypt the message from business and

civil society leaders is clear. It is time for action if we are to deliver on the objectives of the Paris Agreement and limit global warming to 1.5°C above pre-industrial levels. We need to work collaboratively and relentlessly to halve global emissions by 2030, and many companies are rapidly diversifying their energy portfolios, divesting their higher carbon emitting businesses and transitioning to greener power supplies, and renewable options.

To add complexity to the challenge however, most nations do not yet have an energy mix which can rely solely on renewable energy sources.

As such, traditional fossil burning techniques are still necessary to plug the energy shortfall. Global businesses are now working overtime to develop sustainability strategies which promote the right balance of future investments and existing profit targets.

AVEVA believes that one of the key drivers of a successful sustainability strategy is a strong and committed digitisation strategy. Those organisations who heavily fund their move to a completely digital business are creating a strategic differentiator; they are able to deliver their services more efficiently with greater insight

VIEWPOINT
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into their business operations. At the heart of a mature digitisation strategy lies the Digital Twin – a connected data ecosystem which allows the business to have a single source of the truth.

The creation and delivery of a digital twin is no small feat. A digital twin is a virtual representation of a real-world physical system that connects real-time data sources, models and analytics from across the asset lifecycle in one single place. AVEVA customers who have successfully executed their Digital Twin projects will attest to the huge benefits and positive change that a fully digitised business can offer.

One example is state-owned Abu Dhabi National Oil Company (ADNOC). The energy giant‘s colossal industrial operations are powered and guided the Panorama Digital Command Center – a fully integrated, real-time data visualisation platform that helps gain insights, unlock efficiencies, and identify new pathways to optimise

operations. AVEVA’s technologies form the foundation of the display, enabling integration across various systems and providing actionable insights. The Panorama center features a 50-metre long screen, which curves to fit seamlessly with the wall and covers its height from floor to ceiling, giving ADNOC a single, national view of their oil and gas assets and production.

Step into the Industrial Metaverse

Taking one more step into the future, AVEVA believes that the Industrial Metaverse is primed to add powerful sustainability benefits to the digital twin. But what is an Industrial Metaverse?

AVEVA defines an Industrial Metaverse as: “A persistent virtual environment allowing live collaboration across teams, agnostic of interface device, open to the full gamut of data sources and delivering role-based access to real-time operations data streams and up-to-date engineering data.”

The Industrial Metaverse is a virtual space that all employees can use to conduct their business and technical meetings. The Industrial Metaverse does not require a headset, can be used by a mouse and keyboard, and offers access to live SCADA data, up-to-date engineering data and 3D operating environments.

In short, the Industrial Metaverse is a virtual version of your actual operating assets with real-time streamed data which you can jump into with colleagues to investigate, discuss and manage tasking – all based on your digital twin.

Powerful digital sustainability benefits

The Industrial Metaverse provides immersive access to expertise from across your business and supply chain within a virtual space. This means you decrease the CO2 emissions generated by excessive travel, increase the speed of your business decision making, and reduce safety incidents within the virtual world.

In the coming years as the world’s businesses look to radically decarbonise, digital solutions will be the catalyst for securing new sustainability wins. Smart companies will place their digitisation strategies at the core of their business to prime themselves for a sustainable future driven by smart decision making and intelligent data.

AVEVA also sees great opportunities for more sustainable designs, reduced steel and concrete consumption and more automation for plant operations based on collaboration within virtual spaces. The Industrial Metaverse promotes democratisation of access to the digital twin, respects your enterprise access rights and can level-up the value of information.

Being immersed in the Industrial Metaverse will be feel like the equivalent of being on-site, where you’ll be able to work with colleagues and suppliers from around the world, interacting with our assets, share the same information in real time and enjoy a level of collaboration that closely maps face-toface interactions.

The digital twin project is ultimately an information-centric endeavor –focused on data alignment, cleaning, and preparation. Utilising the digital twin within the Industrial Metaverse powerfully connects the most important resource of all: our people.

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BEING IMMERSED IN THE INDUSTRIAL METAVERSE WILL BE FEEL LIKE THE EQUIVALENT OF BEING ON-SITE, WHERE YOU’LL BE ABLE TO WORK WITH COLLEAGUES AND SUPPLIERS FROM AROUND THE WORLD, INTERACTING WITH OUR ASSETS, SHARE THE SAME INFORMATION IN REAL TIME AND ENJOY A LEVEL OF COLLABORATION THAT CLOSELY MAPS FACE-TOFACE INTERACTIONS.

THE GREEN TECH REVOLUTION

WHY SUSTAINABLE IT IS A TOP BUSINESS PRIORITY

The push for environmental, social and governance (ESG) initiatives is a top priority for organisations in the Middle East, which arrans more efficient uses of technology. Sustainable IT is a broader term that encompasses a simple concept – technology that can be designed, used and disposed of in an environment friendly manner. Implementing sustainable IT practices has become mandatory

for many industries because of government regulations and virtually every aspect of IT can come under the sustainability umbrella.

Why is sustainable IT so important now?

There is a growing concern for the environment as the technology sector is one of the largest consumers of energy and producers of greenhouse gases. Using environmentally responsible methods in IT helps to reduce the sector’s overall carbon footprint, says

The world’s resources, such as minerals and metals, are dwindling, and their extraction and processing can have harmful effects on the environment. Sustainable IT aids in cutting down on both waste and resource consumption.

COVER STORY
Talal Shaikh, Associate Professor, Director of Undergraduate Studies for the School of Mathematical and Computer Sciences, Heriot-Watt University Dubai.
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Organisations can save money, become more efficient, and remain competitive all thanks to the implementation of sustainable IT. Organisations can lessen their energy bills by decreasing their energy consumption, and they can lessen their waste loads by doing the same, says.

IDC’s Sustainability Survey — conducted in December 2022 across 176 organisations throughout the Middle East, Turkey, and Africa (META) — found that supply chain alignment and IT efficiency are now key areas of focus for organisations across the region. This highlights the importance of IT as a part of the overall sustainability strategies being employed by organisations in the region.

“IT departments should be placed at the center of organisations’ sustainability initiatives. There are two reasons for this. First, IT has an important role to play in driving digital transformation (DX) strategies that incorporate sustainability as an integral part of the associated initiatives. An IT unit that factors in the sustainability requirements of the wider organisation can deliver greater value to all lines of business,” says Melih Murat, Associate Research Director, ICT Services & Software (META), IDC.

For example, a supply chain solution with sustainability-related functionalities that run on cloudnative architecture will increase a business’s transparency and control across its suppliers, helping it to ensure that those suppliers comply with its sustainability requirements. Second, according to the International Energy Agency, datacenters are responsible for around 1% of the world’s energyrelated greenhouse gas emissions. As such, one of the most important responsibilities of an IT department is to drive energy efficiency across the organisation’s IT assets. At the same time, there are many other sustainability initiatives being driven by IT, he adds.

Dr. Prashant Mapru, VP - R&D, Bayanat, says as most industries work towards reducing their environmental impact, the conversation around Sustainable IT has gained momentum. In this context, geospatial technology plays a critical role in managing and analysing data related to land use, natural resources, climate change, and urbanisation, making it crucial for promoting sustainable development.

“Specific to Bayanat, our domain of geospatial technology demands largescale computing requirements. The demand for computing and storage is growing exponentially, along with the need to be responsible and efficient in the use of resources. In the face of the current global environmental and social challenges, careful implementation of technology solutions is the need of the hour,” he says.

Omar Akar, Regional Vice President for Middle East & Emerging Africa, Pure Storage, says it’s important to note that technology does have the capability to help us to live more sustainably as we use IT to work, stay connected, and enjoy ourselves, all with less travel and fewer materials consumed. In order to do that, IT leaders need to examine their entire tech stack to ensure solutions are as green as possible. If this is incorporated into IT agendas, there is a remarkable opportunity to positively contribute to energy reduction, shape a greener future and set precedents that define our world for decades to come.

The benefits and challenges of sustainable IT

The replacement of expensive, energyintensive equipment every decade or so has a significant impact on the environment.

“Opting for remanufactured, refurbished, or used equipment and

Talal Shaikh Melih Murat
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THE WORLD’S RESOURCES, SUCH AS MINERALS AND METALS, ARE DWINDLING, AND THEIR EXTRACTION AND PROCESSING CAN HAVE HARMFUL EFFECTS ON THE ENVIRONMENT. SUSTAINABLE IT AIDS IN CUTTING DOWN ON BOTH WASTE AND RESOURCE CONSUMPTION.

parts is not only less expensive than purchasing new products, but can also cause fewer emissions. Companies can leverage tech-powered solutions such as cloud migration and IT asset management, along with energy efficiency measures such as low-power mode, power-saving features, and virtualisation to meet sustainability KPIs and positively impact their bottom line,” says Saleem AlBlooshi, Chief Technology Officer, du du has carried out multiple equipment recycling and donation initiatives to curb waste. In addition, du’s data centres are carrier-neutral and fitted with the latest power and cooling management technologies enabling best in class efficiencies. At the same time, du has raised the whitespace temperature to 26 degrees Celsius and utilises LED and solar-powered lights as part of its sustainability and energy-efficiency efforts.

From the perspective of a business, implementing sustainable IT practices can result in a number of benefits, including a reduction in energy consumption and costs, an improvement in brand reputation and customer loyalty, and an increase in regulatory compliance. Companies that implement sustainable IT practices can drive innovation and stay ahead of the competition by developing

environmentally friendly new technologies and solutions.

“However, businesses may face obstacles in implementing sustainable IT practices, such as initial costs, employee resistance to change, and the need for specialised knowledge. Companies can engage in planning and analysis to determine the most effective and cost-effective sustainable IT practices to implement in order to overcome these obstacles,” says Shaikh from Heriot-Watt.

He adds in general, businesses stand to gain a great deal from implementing sustainable IT practices. Companies can promote environmental sustainability, improve their bottom line, and stay ahead of the competition by reducing energy consumption and costs, enhancing brand reputation, and improving regulatory compliance.

Mapru from Bayanat says the benefits of sustainable IT include reduced costs, improved resource efficiency, better decision-making, and enhanced stakeholder trust and confidence. However, this is coupled with the need for significant investments, dealing with technological constraints, the rules and regulations around data privacy and security, and the process of integrating sustainable practices into existing systems and work streams.

Murat from IDC says 38% of the organisations surveyed by IDC in

the META region identified datarelated challenges as a significant sustainability-related issue. A modern IT infrastructure lays the foundation for a robust data-driven monitoring, reporting, and prediction mechanism tied to sustainability goals, such as gaining a competitive advantage, driving efficiencies and cost savings, and mitigating any negative impacts on society and the environment.

It is important for organisations to ensure that data that comes from different sources is managed and integrated properly and that the quality is of a sufficient level for building highquality sustainability use cases. It is also important to integrate internal IT systems with external data exchanges for driving sustainability initiatives, as organisational sustainability initiatives will not succeed in isolation.

Another important challenge identified by 41% of the surveyed organisations is the lack of sustainability-related IT tools and talent in the region. It is important for organisations to work with trusted technology solution providers to prioritise sustainability-related investment areas as part of their DX strategies and identify the IT tools they need to accelerate the sustainability journey.

But the top sustainability-related challenges relate to complexity and leadership commitment, as highlighted by 47% of the surveyed organisations. Sustainability is a multidisciplinary and complex topic, which can be challenging to understand and implement in practice.

“And once an organisation lacks leadership support and commitment, sustainability initiatives will not deliver the expected business outcomes. It is important for organisations to assign a chief sustainability officer or another senior executive who is not only well versed in the organisation’s operations, but also has an understanding of the technological and scientific aspects around sustainability,” Murat concludes.

COVER STORY
Omar Akar Saleem AlBlooshi
16 CXO INSIGHT ME FEBRUARY 2023

VIEWPOINT

JAMES HARVEY, EXECUTIVE CTO, EMEA AT CISCO APPDYNAMICS, DELVES INTO THE FOUR BENEFITS OF A DEVSECOPS APPROACH TO INNOVATION.

the changing needs of customers and users during the pandemic has come at the expense of robust application security during software development.

As a result, technologists are all too aware that applications are now increasingly vulnerable to new and emerging cybersecurity threats across a rapidly expanding attack surface. And the implications of this are potentially crippling — organisations risk significant service disruption and outages which could lead to loss of customers, reputation and revenue.

• Improved security and reduced risk

DevSecOps makes security a shared responsibility and forces developers to identify and prioritise security issues at every step. It results in more secure products and better security management, before, during and after release.

• Faster development times and accelerated innovation

Automation is key to a successful DevSecOps strategy. Robust automation strengthens security postures using artificial intelligence (AIOps), identifying threats and resolving them independent of an admin. This reduces human error, increases efficiency, and drives greater agility in development — enabling teams to ship and deploy applications even faster. Organisations can strengthen their security posture and scale security operations, without sacrificing speed.

• Improved collaboration

Ac ross all sectors, organisations have rapidly accelerated their application development over the past two years, to respond to the constantly evolving needs of customers and employees, and deliver ever more personalised and intuitive digital experiences. Technologists have taken advantage of cloud native technologies and low-code and no-code platforms to accelerate release velocity and build more dynamic applications across more platforms.

However, in many IT departments, application security simply hasn’t kept pace with the speed of innovation. The sheer volume of applications spread across multiple entities has made monitoring security throughout the DevOps pipeline extremely challenging and the reality is that security teams are often deliberately excluded from the development phase, due to fears that they will slow things down.

In the latest research from Cisco AppDynamics, ‘The shift to a security approach for the full application stack’, all surveyed technologists from the United Arab Emirates (UAE) admitted that the rush to rapidly innovate and respond to

In response, technologists are recognising an urgent need for greater collaboration between development and security teams and therefore moving towards a DevSecOps approach. And the benefits of DevSecOps, where security is embedded throughout the development lifecycle, are potentially game-changing.

The shift to DevSecOps requires new tools and relies heavily on automation to detect and block security issues at runtime, embedding Artificial Intelligence (AI) into application security processes. But just as important is the required cultural shift to built-in security, so that ITOps and security teams operate sideby-side, supporting, understanding and appreciating the other’s contribution.

Technologists now regard a DevSecOps approach as essential to protect against a multi-staged security attack on the full application stack. And encouragingly, organisations are already making significant progress in shifting to this new way of working. 49% of IT departments in the Emirates have already started taking a DevSecOps approach and a further 48% are currently considering making the shift.

The benefits of DevSecOps

The research highlights four key benefits of a DevSecOps approach for technologists and their organisations.

A siloed approach makes it incredibly difficult to balance competing priorities for speed, performance and security, and this can eventually affect morale and performance within teams. Collaboration enables technologists to make new connections, learn new skills and become more rounded professionals. And it makes for a more inclusive and enjoyable environment.

• Improved code quality through involvement of security teams

DevSecOps avoids the situation where security considerations delay applications going live at the very last minute or, even worse, where vulnerabilities are only identified once the application has been released. By “shifting left” and introducing security testing earlier in the development process, security teams can analyse and assess security risks and priorities during planning phases to set the foundation for development.

With technologists in the UAE coming under ever greater pressure to increase release velocity, the shift to a DevSecOps is now urgent. IT teams need to ensure they have the tools, structures and processes to take a more proactive approach to application security throughout the application lifecycle.

A WINNING DEVOPS INNOVATION STRATEGY 18 CXO INSIGHT ME FEBRUARY 2023

THE MOVE TO SASE

branches and cloud providers, but if the organisations must support a distributed workforce and a complicated edge, a policy-based approach to access, bandwidth, and security is essential, and SASE comes in as a perfect solution, he adds.

Tarek Abbas, Senior Director, Systems Engineering at Palo Alto Networks, MENA, CIS and Turkey, says in addition to being more cost-effective, a SASE solution provides mobile users, branch offices, and retail locations with secure connectivity and consistent security from any location by offering companies a single, centralised view of their entire network. This helps companies to quickly identify users, devices, and endpoints, apply their networking access and security policies, and security policies a, securely connect users to their applications and data in a cloud or mobile environment, all while ensuring multi-branch and multi-cloud network security.

Nirav Shah, Vice President of Products - SD-WAN, SASE, Zero Trust at Fortinet, offers another perspective: “Every organisation has a unique digital acceleration journey. Some are implementing controls inside data centers and in the cloud and are offering secure connectivity across branches, campuses, and manufacturing facilities. Many are implementing SD-WAN for application-steering needs, while others are taking the next step and adding secure remote access through SASE.”

Gartner developed the SASE (secure access service edge) model in 2019 and defined it as architecture that delivers converged network and security as a service capability, including SD-WAN, SWG, CASB, NFFW, and zero trust access network.

Because of its unified nature, SASE promises to eliminate WAN complexity and cost and is a fast-growing market slated to touch $10 billion this year. Secure access service edge (SASE) is a framework for network architecture, a cloud-based cybersecurity solution offering comprehensive WAN capabilities and network security

functions. It brings cloud-native security technologies together with wide area network (WAN) capabilities to securely connect users, systems, and endpoints to applications and services anywhere.

“SASE is the organisation enablement to the cloud while MPLSbased links cannot cope with the cloud transition as they were designed simply to connect branches to enterprise data centers. SASE improves manageability and enhances security while lowering cost and complexity,” says Peter Chalouhy, business transformation leader at Kyndryl.

SD-WAN works well when we are connecting the organisations to

THE ADOPTION OF SECURE ACCESS SERVICE EDGE THAT COMBINES NETWORKING WITH SECURITY IS EXPECTED TO GROW SUBSTANTIALLY THIS YEAR. HERE IS WHAT YOU NEED TO KNOW IN YOUR QUEST FOR SASE.
FEATURE
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Peter Chalouhy

Organisations considering deploying SASE must consider whether this allin-one service model meets their needs better than a best-in-breed approach. So how do you determine whether SASE is the right WAN option for your organisation?

“We believe SASE is the right option when the customer’s answers to the following questions are yes: Do you have a dispersed and hybrid workforce/ environment - including not just the people using your applications, but the applications, devices, and more? Do you need to protect sites, remote users, and the consumption of cloudbased applications, and optimise their usability? And third, do you need to consolidate outdated standalone and legacy solutions not designed for hybrid/cloud environments?” says Jesus Cordero, Consulting Solutions Engineer, Network Security, Barracuda.

Shah from Fortinet says it’s important for us to understand the core definition of SASE—secure access service edge. It’s all about the convergence of networking and security. “If you think about what happened during COVID-19 and now post-pandemic, it’s about users working from anywhere and enabling anytime access from any device. And in this case, SASE as a framework makes sense as we talk about cloud-delivered security,” he says.

Abbas from Palo Alto Networks says If an organisation is looking for one

seamless solution to embed all their performance and security policies and that has users and devices as the focal point, SASE will be the best fit. SASE enables organisations to raise security levels, reduce costs and complexity since you need to only deal with one vendor for your network and security solutions.

What are the pros and cons of singlevendor SASE?

The burgeoning SASE market encompasses established networking vendors as well as startups in addition to telecom service providers offering their own SASE solutions.

“Knowing that SASE is about combining networking and security together, a single-vendor approach has its pros in terms of unifying and simplifying the solution and the relationship for further operations. However, it poses its own challenges; for example, the vendors combining two different broad topics may not be able to continuously provide the best in each area,” says Chalouhy from Kyndryl.

There is a continuous need for security to evolve and cover new complex threats while, at the same time, networks are under pressure for different automation requirements. In the market, the well-known vendors evolved from security backgrounds, capitalising on expertise in firewalls, antivirus, and other security solutions.

Those vendors are attempting to build expertise in the network and WAN where they did not have previous indepth knowledge, he adds.

Also, many organisations, still operate legacy data centre applications and may continue to do so for a very long time. Therefore, they will need a multi-vendor strategy to cover both SASE in the cloud and others for the data centre.

Cordero from Barracuda says that a single vendor strategy reduces latency due to the nature of SASE architecture as there’s no need to scan traffic through different engines and standalone solutions. A single-vendor strategy also reduces the overall cost in term of services and licensing subscriptions; and reduces the risk of human error in the misconfiguration of different solutions that need to work together. It also reduces the time lost to risk management in the case of an incident, as the customer needs to deal only with one technical support team.

“A possible downside of a one-vendor strategy is the single point of failure, but in my experience, creating a redundant assets design will help with this. There is a more important choice for customers to make than between single- or multivendor: the need to use a vendor that offers cloud-first and cloud-native deployment and management without needing a vendor-owned “pre-public cloud” instance, which incurs additional usage costs,” sums up Cordero.

Nirav Shah
21 CXO INSIGHT ME FEBRUARY 2023
Tarek Abbas Jesus Cordero

IS YOUR BOARD READY FOR NEW CYBER REGULATION?

JAMES GERBER, CHIEF FINANCIAL OFFICER OF SIMSPACE, EXPLAINS HOW ORGANISATIONS CAN PREPARE FOR INCREASED REGULATION AND PROVE THEIR CYBERSECURITY PROGRAMME’S READINESS UNDER EMERGENCY CONDITIONS.

In March 2022, the Security Exchanges Commission (SEC) issued a proposed regulation titled ‘Cybersecurity Risk Management, Strategy, Governance, and Incident Disclosure’. Within it, the SEC describes the need to enhance the standardisation of disclosure regarding cybersecurity risk management and reporting. This follows the ‘Cyber Incident Reporting for Critical Infrastructure Act of 2022’ (CIRCIA) signed into law last March that asks companies to voluntarily disclose their cyber breaches.

With the new proposed regulation, the SEC is suggesting that

organisations should be mandated to periodically disclose the policies and procedures they have in place to identify and manage cyber risk. This would include the management’s role in implementing cybersecurity best practice as well as their board members’ cybersecurity expertise. The proposed legislation would also require companies to provide updates about previously reported cybersecurity incidents.

The regulation intends to better inform investors about a registrant’s risk management strategies and the governance they have in place to ensure their systems are ready to face

a cyberattack. However, this proposed legislation has resulted in outcry and demands for withdrawal from Fortune 100 companies who fear the regulation will incur adverse consequences on shareholder price and stakeholder demand.

The Threat to Businesses

Catalysed by the Russian war in Ukraine, threat actors continue to attack national critical infrastructure and governmental organisations around the world. However, these tactics, techniques and procedures (TTPs) are now being launched at businesses and organisations

VIEWPOINT
22 CXO INSIGHT ME FEBRUARY 2023

as cybercriminals are becoming increasingly focused on extorting and exfiltrating sensitive data from highly lucrative businesses. The IBM Cost of a Data Breach Report 2022 revealed that, reaching an all-time high, the overall cost of a data breach averaged USD 4.35 million in 2022.

Regulatory bodies have now recognised the importance of cybersecurity legislation for companies as organisations continue to fall victim to cyber hacks. The goal of ensuring boards are doing everything in their power to protect sensitive customer and investor data will now make organisations held directly accountable for their cybersecurity defence plans and tools.

Cyber Defence Strategies

As complete cybersecurity disclosure will likely become mandatory for businesses, they would be well placed to act now to avoid data leaks and legal reprimands. Outside of the proposed SEC regulation, the Biden Administration is also getting much more aggressive. A 35-page document, titled “National Cybersecurity Strategy” is expected to be signed in the coming months.

The paper will impose mandatory regulations on a wide swathe of American industries. The bill will also authorise U.S. defence, intelligence, and law enforcement agencies to go on the offensive, hacking into the computer networks of criminals and foreign governments. Governments and regulatory bodies are awakening to the threat posed by hostile nation state actors. Businesses must ensure a return on cybersecurity investment, especially in an uncertain economic environment.

Organisations have to ensure that their cyber security platforms are running effectively as well as being cost-efficient. This is essential for best practice cybersecurity disclosure as well as customer confidence and investor reassurance. One way in which organisations can prepare for this new wave of mandatory regulation is to test

their defensive capabilities within a safe, simulated environment, such as a cyber range.

Implementing Advanced Cybersecurity Technology

A cyber range is a high fidelity, scaled replica of an organisation’s production environment complete with accurate terrain and actual, primary defence tools. Cyberattacks can then be launched against this model, identifying weak points through which threat actors can enter. This system can also quantifiably measure the success of an organisation’s individual defensive tools. The applications which are not providing quantifiable intelligence can be offloaded, saving the company money which can be invested elsewhere.

Although a range realistically simulates user and active traffic within which real attacks and defence can occur, testing to this extent within a replication of a network rather than the real system means that the company does not have to sacrifice its uptime or risk major damage on their systems.

A cyber range is flexible enough to rapidly build to great detail a production network as well as examine overall performance with a different set of tools. An organisation’s whole stack

performance can be scored against the latest attack threats. In this way, businesses can safeguard the data held within their networks through the constant testing of their people, processes, and technology.

Businesses should be determining the preparedness of their organisation against known threats by using cyber ranges in accordance with best practice guidelines:

1) Performing exercises aimed at reviewing your current breach and disclosure process in order to understand the gaps within an organisation’s defence systems.

2) Conducting live-fire exercises on a cyber range can establish new success benchmarks and identify weaknesses within your people, processes, and technology. From this, a dashboard can be established to track performance in accordance with the new SEC standards.

3) Based on the results of the range exercise, organisations then need to start a program of continuous security improvements that would include updating their processes, training their teams, and optimising their security stack.

4) Finally, businesses need to develop a regular cadence of communications across their leadership teams to provide security and risk reviews for all new business initiatives and thirdparty programs, ensuring an end-toend security mindset.

Organisations that are investing in mil-spec cyber defence strategies like cyber ranges can dramatically increase their ability to defend against a hack, while maintaining a cyber cost reduction. This means they will be able to accurately and confidently report to regulators on their cyber shielding practices, instilling confidence and trust in their customers and investors. Cyber ranges provide evidence which can be presented to regulation boards and shareholders, proving that an organisation’s systems are combatready to tackle the latest cyber threats.

23 CXO INSIGHT ME FEBRUARY 2023

CREATING CONNECTIONS

And that’s why together with our partners, Aruba as a company is really betting hard on NaaS. And we have some very interesting capabilities to offer to the market.

What is so unique about Aruba’s NaaS offering?

What do you see as the most important digital transformation trends today?

Morten: We have witnessed a lot of transformational topics over the last couple of years. Cloud computing has been a big trend which gathered momentum during the pandemic and is a cornerstone of a digital transformation strategy today. Security has become a top priority for CIOs today with the advent of the borderless enterprise. There is also a shift towards automation around processes, a big focus on AI and ML driven outcomes and the emergence of Software-as-a-Service IT consumption model.

But the most significant in my opinion is that of convergence – not just convergence of the network, but in general, the convergence of the whole IT estate –the operational environment, the sprawl, the reduction of administration tasks. All the things that are impacting companies as IT complexities increase. In this context, the network has started to become a transformational centre point.

Within HPE, we have multiple business units covering the IT estate - a server business, storage business, networking business, software business and financial services business. The vision we have as a company is the Edge-to-Cloud Platform as a Service. We are trying to help our customers on that convergence and transformation that they need to do on the digital side to create a new environment that serves as a platform for innovation. We see an increasing

number of customers working with us to transform their networks from manually operated infrastructure to one that’s fully automated.

Can you explain the concept of Network as a Service (NaaS) and why is becoming increasingly popular in today’s context?

Morten: The simple answer is because our customers want to spend less time on operation and more time on innovation. As device counts grow, endpoints diversify, and connectivity demands increase, planning the network and keeping up with change can be overwhelming. What is needed is the flexibility of cloud agility, security, scale, compliance, automation and AI to help the business perform better. Network as-a-Service Brings Flexibility to the Edge. It includes data analytics, expanded telemetry, artificial intelligence, and automation – which combine to deliver critical efficiency gains in network operations. With network management increasingly complex in the new age of remote working, replacing manual interventions with advanced automation and analytics also provides increased visibility from a security perspective. Ultimately enterprises are increasingly favouring NaaS offerings as it allows them to outsource the hardware and software components of their networks to a partner to take on the more mundane tasks, enabling their employees to focus on mission-critical, business-enabling work. Overall, NaaS increases operational efficiencies which reducing costs.

Morten: We believe that the true value is the partner value chain that we have today. We don’t have an ‘Aruba only’ model. We deliver the framework as a foundation, and then depending on the customer’s unique requirements, our partners add bespoke services to our framework in order to deliver the required capabilities, working in close conjunction with Aruba and the customer. So, our NaaS solution is really about foundational NaaS capabilities. It is a framework coupled with the financial model and basic support and AI capabilities that we offer our partners who in turn deliver customised solutions to their end customers so that enterprises can consume the network as they consume the cloud - which is really what NaaS is.

HPE Aruba is positioned as a Leader in the 2022 Gartner Magic Quadrant for Wired and Wireless LAN Infrastructure. What are the various factors that have contributed to Aruba’s leadership position?

Jacob: It’s a matter of pride that for 17 consecutive years, we have been recognised as a Leader by Gartner for Wired and Wireless LAN infrastructure. I believe the driver behind this is our world class end to end Edge-to-Cloud solution portfolio. Our WiFi technology is one of the best in the industry. There are certain unique capabilities in our WiFi solutions like inbuilt GPS for example that other vendors in the market do not provide. Our CX switching platforms provide a very strong campus network solution. Aruba ESP (Edge Services Platform) is a nextgeneration, cloud-native architecture that enables you to accelerate digital business transformation through automated network management, Edge-to-Cloud security, and predictive AI-powered insights. All these market leading technologies, together with the right go-to-market strategy and a strong

INTERVIEW
MORTEN ILLUM, EMEA VICE PRESIDENT AND JACOB CHACKO, REGIONAL DIRECTOR - MIDDLE EAST & AFRICA AT ARUBA, A HEWLETT PACKARD ENTERPRISE COMPANY, EXPLAIN HOW THE COMPANY IS MAKING STRIDES IN THE WORLD OF NETWORKING INNOVATION.
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partner ecosystem across the globe have contributed to cementing our position as a Leader in the Magic Quadrant. And as Morten mentioned, we have yet another model to take to our customers – NaaS, where they can step away from the arduous operational tasks and focus on innovation.

The WAN Edge is the focal point for architecting a Secure Services Access Edge (SASE). Can you discuss Aruba’s strategy in this area?

Jacob: It all started with the acquisition of Silver Peak, the global SD-WAN leader, way back in September 2020. That today is the Aruba EdgeConnect solution which complements our Edge-to-Cloud portfolio. Our solution provides a secure network foundation for Zero Trust and SASE. It includes a best-of-breed SD-WAN solution paired with a next-generation firewall delivering unmatched quality of experience and advanced security. We have seen customers, including some of the MEA region’s top companies in transportation, education and public sector, react extremely positively to the technology. By empowering customers to use broadband

connections to augment or replace their current MPLS networks, Aruba improves customer responsiveness, increases application performance, and significantly reduces capital and operational expenses by up to 90 percent. This value proposition resonates very strongly in the market.

One of our unique value propositions lies in our integration capabilities. Customers might already be on the cloud journey, working with cloud security vendors like Zscaler, Check Point, Palo Alto and others. Traditional SD-WAN vendors would suggest that they could do the security piece as well and advise the customer to rip and replace existing technologies. Aruba on the other hand integrates very strongly with other vendor’s technologies, so customers get the best of both worlds.

Morten: I think the SD-WAN market at the moment is hot. We acquired Silver Peak, because we thought it would complement our overall strategy. The fact that with the solution you are able to operate your connection to the cloud, to the user, at the edge, in a seamless way, with AI capabilities for a quicker and more efficient operational environment, is really a key differentiator.

In the Middle East and Africa there is a huge push towards digital transformation. And part of the digital transformation puzzle is the ‘security’ pillar, in which SDWAN plays a key role. So that’s a part of the whole SASE storm that is coming to us, where customers are really interested in understanding how we can help them do more with less, but in a secure way.

How is Aruba leveraging the power of AI in its solutions?

Jacob: If you look at the top digital transformation trends, besides the cloud journey and NaaS which we discussed earlier, another very important aspect is how do you get outcomes out of AI and ML? Aruba ESP (Edge Services Platform) is layered around 3 building blocksConnect, Protect, and Act. The ‘Connect’ piece is the WiFi and the switching. ‘Protect’ is how you build security around it. In this age of IoT, you’re talking about thousands of sensors that get latched onto the network. On an average, they say it takes not more than five minutes for a hacker to crack into an IoT network because of the number of endpoints. There is the need to have a good security framework to onboard these sensors into your network and ensure that policies are aligned to those sensors. This is what is being done on Aruba ESP. Now we come to the final piece ‘Act’. Within the networking industry, managing operational aspects has always been very reactive in nature. With AI and ML, there is a distinct shift now towards being proactive. To give you an example, every mall has a WiFi infrastructure that shoppers and staff connect to. With the WiFi network responding to connection requests, there is less network capacity to support the store’s employees and guests, resulting in a poor user experience. Aruba AIOps has the ability to detect this anomaly and determines the difference between someone passing by and a legitimate user, offering prescriptive recommendations that prevent this from happening again. After incorporating the recommendations, retailers can get insights that eliminate 98% of the network traffic caused by people walking by the store. That’s the beauty of AI. And that’s what has been built into the Aruba ESP solution.

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THE FUTURE OF CUSTOMER EXPERIENCE

1. Faster Innovation

IT leaders must typically support and ensure everything functions cohesively, that data flows freely, and that all of this occurs in real-time. Seamless connectivity is essential here.

Composable CX platforms offer a comprehensive range of open APIs, simple no-code or low-code integration techniques, and a vast ecosystem of pre-built solutions and apps. This makes it easy to connect to other systems and share data with them.

cloud technologies, these platforms scale automatically. They provide unparalleled resilience and are subjected to stringent security and compliance testing.

3. Connected Customer Experiences

Successful businesses prioritise in all they do. A modern CX ecosystem empowers these businesses to ensure that the human experience remains their primary priority. These ecosystems recognise that your customers travel with your organisation to achieve personal goals.

It is often said that successful businesses put the client experience at the core of everything they do, and only a modern CX ecosystem can help these businesses ensure that the human experience remains a top priority. These ecosystems understand that customers travel with your company to attain personal objectives.

According to an Intelligence report released on the sidelines of the Customer Experience Live Show Middle East, 74% of organizations in the Middle East aimed to invest more than $200,000 in Customer Experience (CX) technology this year. Moreover, our latest “The state of customer experience” report revealed that almost 60% of surveyed organizations noted customer experience (CX) as a board-level priority.

A successful customer-centric enterprise aligns its entire organization around its customers. However, this new approach brings with it a complex set of business challenges across people, processes, and technology.

Therefore, when considering investing in a modular CX platform, it is important to understand how it can improve your tech environment and benefit both your customers and employees.

With the increased ease of connecting systems and data, lengthy and drawn-out integration projects give way to smarter, faster innovation.

2. Organisational Agility

Digital transformation is accelerating change in every part of the enterprise, including the CX ecosystem.

New solutions are being made available, existing systems are being phased out, new channels are emerging, security threats are increasing, and compliance requirements are evolve. Composable CX platforms thrive in these environments because they’re designed to be flexible, adaptive, and resilient in the face of uncertainty.

Composable CX platforms are modular, allowing for increased flexibility. Enterprises can rapidly activate native features, establish pre-built integrations with industry-leading solutions, or design entirely new capabilities that are unique to their businesses.

As IT and business collaborate to respond in real-time to fluctuating market conditions, the mix of capabilities supplied and the manner in which they are deployed are always evolving.

Composable CX platforms offer advantages beyond simple plug-andplay. Built to make the most of modern

During these journeys, customers traverse multiple products, channels, and business functions, and collecting these touchpoints and engagements represents the customer experience.

Composable CX platforms with customer journey analytics capabilities allow organisations to visualise, analyse and optimise journeys at scale. They collect data from every touchpoint across the CX ecosystem, including the corporate website, CRM system, MarTech solutions, eCommerce, and others.

Building a unified view of customers as they interact with a brand reveals the paths their most satisfied customers take.

Moving Forward with Your Customer Experience Strategy

As organisations attempt to personalise and empathise with their customers and employees, they require a connected, intelligent, and dynamic CX environment. Composable CX platforms combine data, actionable insights, systems, integrations, and automation to orchestrate experiences in their entirety. This means that businesses of any size, location, or budget can use CX solutions from an ecosystem. They help businesses stand out from their competitors and respond to changes in real-time.

AMR ALMASRI, REGIONAL DIRECTOR, GENESYS, MIDDLE EAST, LISTS OUT THREE REASONS TO ADOPT A COMPOSABLE CX PLATFORM
VIEWPOINT 26 CXO INSIGHT ME FEBRUARY 2023

THE NEW NORMAL IN MANUFACTURING

MAGGIE SLOWIK AND ANDREW BURTON, GLOBAL INDUSTRY DIRECTORS- MANUFACTURING, IFS, PREDICT INTENSE GLOBAL COMPETITION, COMPLEX CUSTOMER DEMANDS AND TIGHTENING REGULATIONS FOR THE MANUFACTURING INDUSTRY IN 2023.

reporting and disclosure of ESG metrics around the world and jurisdictions

For instance, the EU as part of its Green New Deal program for a low-carbon economy, has adopted the Corporate Sustainability Reporting Directive (CSRD), where metrics are specified under the European Sustainability Reporting Standards (ESRS) which has been submitted to the European Commission. The legislation will require over 50,000 firms to report independently verified ESG indicators.

Meanwhile, in the US, the Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) is in the process of finalising its Mandatory Climate Risk Disclosures legislation, requiring SEC registrants to disclose climate-related information in annual filings.

Both the ESRS and the SEC will require emissions to be reported on, and as these, along with other ESG disclosure requirements tightening up between 2023 and 2024, all manufacturers must prepare for reporting readiness.

Manufacturers are no strangers to dealing with turbulent market conditions, however the current global landscape is a sea of uncertainty that can sink even the most buoyant of companies. That said, new technologies, improved planning and better use of data have created huge opportunities for companies to adapt and become more resilient.

Prediction 1: By 2024, ESG Governance will have shaped the extent to which 70% of manufacturers are tracking their ESG scope 1 and 2 emissions using digital technology and improving the accuracy of their scope 3 metrics. ESG, as a measurement of a company’s environmental, social, and governance initiatives, has become an essential component of how organisations are assessed and valued — by investors, partners, customers, and employees alike. For manufacturers, the primary focus

at present is on the environmental, or “E” aspect of ESG, with the ultimate mandate to show progress towards decarbonisation. Back in January 2022 we predicted that 75% of manufacturers would prioritise decarbonisation as part of their sustainability efforts.

Manufacturers voluntarily comply with reporting even when this means dealing with a complex set of reporting regulations, ratings, and disclosure frameworks. In a recent IFS Sustainability focused customer day, attendees indicated that they typically adhere to 3 main reporting standards and frameworks: the Global Reporting Initiative (GRI), the EU’s Corporate Sustainability Reporting Directive (CSRD), and the CDP Climate Change Programme. In addition we also see commitment to the Science-Based Target Initiative, and the Corporate NetZero Standard.

The ESG landscape is ever evolving, and we are already seeing regulatory frameworks emerging to standardise the

However, at present we see most manufacturers lacking the capabilities to track scope 1, 2 and 3 emissions. This is mostly due to the fact they are still manually collecting these metrics from within their organisation across entities and different systems while using Excel as a repository and analysis tool.

2023 will see manufacturers investing in technology in earnest, to help automate and ingest consistent, comparable, and reliable carbon metrics as part of their enhanced ESG disclosures.

While this will be easier for scope 1 and scope 2 emissions, which are from emission sources owned and controlled by organisations, scope 3 emissions will remain a challenge for most, but will not be lesser of a priority. Here’s why:

Scope 3 emissions (all the emissions indirectly generated by a business) account for the largest share of most companies’ greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions, this can account for up to 75% of companies’ greenhouse gas emissions on average, and therefore representing a large proportion of climate-related risk.

Prediction 2: By 2024, over high proportion of manufacturers will appoint resources to roles in digital

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Maggie Slowik

science to support the development of their digital twin strategy

As the integration of applications and machines progress the amount of data being collected is increasing exponentially.

It is estimated that there will be 41.6 billion devices connected to the internet by 2025. 127 new devices are connected to the internet every second which will lead to 79.4 Zettabytes of data by 2025, according to IDC.

Not all these new connected machines are being used in manufacturing. However, it does show that machines and devices being connected to the internet and each other will be generating huge amounts of data. This data must be understood, controlled, managed, and checked for accuracy as this data will form the basis of real time decision making. This will need new skills that are not currently employed in many manufacturing companies.

Manufacturers are realising the importance of their data, and how it is, or will run their decision making in real time.

New positions are being created for data scientists, or chief data officers, whose role is to understand the data and how it is used. They will be responsible for the accuracy of the data and to understand where the data is coming from and its impact on the day to day running of the business.

Manufacturers who include this role will be able to move through the data transformation journey and harness the power of digital twin in their business than those who do not.

Prediction 3: increased macroeconomic turbulence, will see 60% of manufacturers scale up digital investments beyond pilot purgatory to drive business value.

Global supply chain shortages, price inflation and recession, are increasingly pointing to digitalisation as an enabler for companies to withstand geopolitical and macroeconomic disruptions.

But the question remains, digitalisation is not new and so to what extend have manufactures been able to make use of their technologies to protect their business performance? We have seen the basics covered: reduce costs, improved

operational efficiency and shortened time to market are amongst the main benefits, but have manufacturers really made the most of their digital transformation investments?

In a recent IFS / IDC we asked manufacturers to self-assess their digital maturity. The Study found that 75% consider themselves as digitally mature. A study by McKinsey highlights that many manufacturers have not been able to move beyond “pilot purgatory”, meaning that they have not been able to scale successful pilots programs or fully leverage new tools and technology to see meaningful returns/business outcomes. The differences between the two study points a shortfall in devising a true long term and business wide vision on the value digital transformation can bring.

The widespread toe-dipping pilots have created a ‘try before we buy’ mentality and has isolated digital technology away from Business as usual. Other reasons include lack of leadership and strategy, siloed implementation, and a technologyfirst (vs business first) approach. These findings are compounded by findings that 62% of manufacturers are struggling to articulate digital technology ROI which if deployed in siloes is to be expected.

2023 is the continuation of unpredictable market dynamics and manufacturers must start re-evaluating their digital transformation strategies to prevent further depletion of their investments and efforts.

This will require focusing on real business needs, use cases and challenges, and integrating pilots into their mainstream business processes and rolled these out across the wider manufacturing network.

Prediction 4: By 2025, 2 out of 3 manufacturers will have digitally enhanced their legacy assets enabling them to be connected to their MES systems to improve productivity. New production machinery is considerably easier to connect to business systems; Manufacturers who have been able to invest in modern machinery and connect them to their business enterprise systems are seeing impressive results that are impacting

business performance.

However, not all manufacturers are in this fortunate situation and many still own large expensive production machinery, built before the computer integration came as standard. These manufacturing companies’ risk being left behind those that are along their way on the digital transformation journey unless they take action to modernise their operations and integrate their assets into their broader system by adding sensors throughout and achieve real time visibility of the asset’s performance as well as take advantage of predictive maintenance capabilities.

This asset modernisation approach is more cost effective in a lot of cases as capex investments are not required and the ramp up to digital transformation can be made smoother without compromising on value delivered.

The increased demand for sensors for legacy machinery points to a renewed focus on MES roll-out in the next couple of years.

Prediction 5: By 2025 – 40% of manufacturers will use AI to bolster business decision making.

As manufacturers continue their digital transformation journeys the amount of data that is now available has increased exponentially – a contributing to this journey and aiding the interpretation of this data is Artificial Intelligence (AI) –what was once only conceived as cinema fiction has become a modern-day reality for many manufacturers.

Beyond the physical world of robotics, drones and autonomous vehicles, it is what we can’t see that is really changing and influencing manufacturers globally to think and act differently. AI and machine learning are allowing manufacturers to make smarter, more accurate and actionable decisions – essentially enabling a standard production line, to become more autonomous as each moving part can think independently and acts on future information like weather forecasts and consumer spending habits. It’s this smart way of thinking that is allowing manufacturers to become leaner and more agile – and crucially home in on their customer centricity strategy.

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CHANGING THE RULES OF THE GAME

HADI JAAFARAWI, MANAGING DIRECTOR FOR MIDDLE EAST AT QUALYS, ON THREE WAYS TO SEE YOUR TECHNOLOGY SUITE AS CYBER-ATTACKERS DO

The world of cybersecurity is overflowing with metaphor. We talk of “digital trenches”, “barbarians at the gate”, “digital estates” and “perimeters”. Even concepts like “virus” and “attack” are constructs we use to explain what is happening to non-initiates. We try to draw a line between unauthorized digital processes on a server that today may not even be in the same building, city, or country as the confusedlooking senior executive we are trying to inspire to action.

Cyber cliché is as common as metaphor. “Defenders must get it right every time; attackers just need

to get lucky once.” Sound familiar? Of course it does. The GCC’s attack surface has long caused CISOs and their teams to brace for the inevitable. They hunker down in the trenches doing the metaphorical equivalent of firing mortars in the fog — chasing down alerts that lead nowhere while the enemy sneaks through undetected and creates mayhem.

Regional SOCs are undermanned and underequipped. That is why we employ metaphor and cliché. We seek to capture the scale of the problem so line-of-business executives will invest in appropriate tools for asset management, vulnerability scanning,

patching and the prevention and remediation of attacks. There are some signs that our colorful messages are getting through. According to PwC, around 43% of Middle East organizations predicted a surge in reportable cyber-incidents in 2022. At the start of this year, 58% of those polled foresaw a spike in investment compared with just 43% at the beginning of 2021.

Irksome and uncanny

Good news, assuming the investment is efficiently targeted. Asset discovery is easy for the assets with which IT and the SOC are familiar. But what

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With ColorTokens’ award winning Zero Trust micro-segmentation framework you can find and fix the evolving risks that threaten your business.

ColorTokens’ SaaS-based, cloud-delivered approach ensures fast and easy segmentation, effectively blocking the spread of ransomware and other threat actors inside your network.

Learn more about how ColorTokens can prevent cyber threats from becoming a full scale attack on your network. Write to info@colortokens for an exploratory demo.

www.colortokens.com

The cyber-risk is real, but not always visible.

about those other assets? The ones currently off radar, but which pose a risk nonetheless? New devices and additions to the network that should be managed from the start often go unnoticed because of the modern splintering of the IT stack. Third-party networks and employees’ personal devices are just two examples. Unfortunately for us, attackers have an irksome and uncanny talent for finding stack elements that are hidden from defenders. So, the prevailing challenge of the modern cybersecurity professional is to duplicate the attacker’s view of their network and add it to their own. Here are three ways to go about this.

1External penetration testing

This approach has been around for years but there is a reason it is a classic. An outside team with no preconceptions that is incentivised to poke holes in your cyber-curtain is better placed to find vulnerabilities than the teams or vendors who created them. External teams use the same tools, techniques, and processes as cybercriminals. But pen-testing alone is not enough. It will only provide a snapshot of current security postures and cannot offer ongoing assessment. In the age of hybrid work, employees can add devices every day and business units can engage in their own private deals with third-party providers for new cloudnative infrastructures and services. We must go further.

2Open-source intelligence

As more and more IT assets routinely connect to both company networks and the Internet, they (and the company that permits them access) run the risk of being visible on the Internet. A laser-light on the wall to an attacker, these assets will leave around data to be vacuumed up and analyzed by services like Shodan (Sentient Hyper-Optimized Data Access Network), which bills itself as a search engine for the Internet of Everything but which can be used by pen-testers and cyber-attackers alike.

Such data sources are available to everyone as open-source intelligence (OSINT). Since attackers use them, it only makes sense for defenders to use the same tools to get an idea of their online exposure. Problem assets or issues in IT, OT or IoT can make themselves known. Organizations can add public data to their internal asset lists to make it useful to SOC teams. Those same teams can get useful information on their enterprises’

domains and subdomains, and what assets are registered on those domains. Visibility of this range and depth can show important connections between internal and external assets, giving a far more accurate picture of the technology suite.

3External attack-surface management

External attack-surface management (EASM) takes the newfound comprehensive view of the technology stack and uses it to detect potential issues or threats over time. By now, the SOC team will have access to information about all the various platforms their organization uses, whether they are cloud-native or hosted internally. This makes it significantly easier to detect potential vulnerabilities, as the security team will also have visibility of configurations and inadequately protected assets.

Now we can flag assets that were previously unknown if we find them to pose problems. Some may be unauthorized, others merely unapproved. They may be found to be running end-of-support software, open ports, or unsanctioned apps. They may be connecting to suspect domains.

Similar to penetration testing, EASM gives an attacker’s view of the network, but unlike pen-testers, EASM grants insights in real time and over time. When up-to-the-minute visibility is at the beck and call of SOCs, it suddenly becomes possible to fix issues before attackers exploit them. This also leads to a team that is less prone to burnout through alert fatigue.

New metaphors

A security team that is armed with all the information available to attackers can think like attackers. In fact, only a team armed with all the information available to attackers can think like attackers. Such teams will have new metaphors: “armed for the fight” and “entering the battlefield with confidence”. And the business, having listened and invested appropriately, is safer from the digital hordes.

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UNFORTUNATELY FOR US, ATTACKERS HAVE AN IRKSOME AND UNCANNY TALENT FOR FINDING STACK ELEMENTS THAT ARE HIDDEN FROM DEFENDERS. SO, THE PREVAILING CHALLENGE OF THE MODERN CYBERSECURITY PROFESSIONAL IS TO DUPLICATE THE ATTACKER’S VIEW OF THEIR NETWORK AND ADD IT TO THEIR OWN.

THE NEXT GIANT LEAP

LEAP23 ANNOUNCES INVESTMENTS OF MORE THAN $9 BILLION TO SUPPORT FUTURE TECHNOLOGY AND STARTUPS IN SAUDI ARABIA

The second editon of LEAP23,which was held in Riyadh earlier this month, announced more than $9 billion in investments to support future technologies, digital entrepreneurship, tech startups, and enhance the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia’s position as the largest digital market in the Middle East and North Africa (MENA).

The investments were revealed by His Excellency Eng. Abdullah bin Amer Alswaha, the Minister of Communications and Information Technology (MCIT), during a keynote address on the opening morning of LEAP23.

H.E Alswaha confirmed the investments included Microsoft’s $2.1 billion investment in a global super-scaler cloud in the Kingdom, Oracle investing US$1.5 billion to expand its MENA business by launching new cloud areas in the Kingdom, Huawei’s US$400 million investment in cloud infrastructure for its services in the Kingdom, and the launch of a Zoom cloud area in the Kingdom in partnership with Aramco. An additional US$ 4.5 billion has been invested in global and local assets across multiple sectors at LEAP23, added H.E Alswaha.

H.E Alswaha emphasised that the huge investment packages come with the full support of HRH Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman bin Abdulaziz Al Saud. The investments are part of the Crown Prince’s empowerment of the technology sector, which is one of Saudi Arabia’s most promising sectors amid unprecedented growth in the Kingdom’s digital economy, Internet of Things, biological and healthtech, quantitative science, space, satellites, fintech, and open sources.

With LEAP23 set to fast-track the country’s digital transformation, H.E Alswaha explained that HRH the Crown Prince remains committed to accelerating development that will help Saudi Arabia

achieve the objectives of Vision 2030 by leveraging technologies of the future in promising sectors.

Across Saudi Arabia, more than 340,000 people currently work in the digital, telecommunications and information technology sectors, with female participation now standing at 32.5% - a higher rate than both the EU and Silicon Valley.

H.E Alswaha also confirmed plans to strengthen the outcomes of LEAP23 in diversifying the economy, localising technology, and advancing industries. Citing the two-year-old event’s standing as one of the world’s most important annual global technology platforms, H.E Alswaha said LEAP23 boasts the unique capacity to connect innovators with entrepreneurs and thought leaders, and drive bold investment funds to launch qualitative partnerships in new investment areas.

Other major announcements on the first day of LEAP23 included Meta launching the opening of the first Metaverse Academy in MENA, WEO Technology and Camel Lab launching Hektar, a multi-content social media app;

and MENA Communication and STC launching Beem – a new application for instant messaging, high-quality voice and video calls, and business features.

The inaugural DeepFest - in partnership with the Saudi Data & AI Authority (SDAIA) - gathered drivers of the global Artificial Intelligence eco-system to unveil life-changing, multi-sector initiatives in a thought-leadership conference and sector-specific tracks, trainings, livedemos, startup pitches and an exhibition featuring companies transforming the world we live and work in.

Themed ‘AI Beyond Imagination’, DeepFest saw thought-leaders, changemakers, big tech, data scientists, innovators, enterprises, academia, startups, and innovative business entrepreneurs unveil government AI initiatives and multi-sector innovations through a thought-leadership conference and sector-specific tracks, trainings, live-demos, and innovation sessions. The new conference program this year had tracks for clean tech, the Metaverse, and women in technology, while the DeepFest exhibition featured the world’s top tech companies and breakthrough stars.

REPORT
34 CXO INSIGHT ME FEBRUARY 2023
C O NNECTING MIN d S, B O OSTING CYBER RESILIENCE DUBAI WORLD TRADE CENTRE 14-16 MAR 2023 #GISEC.AE H.E. DR. MOHAMED AL-KUWAITI HEAD OF CYBER SECURITY UNITED ARAB EMIRATES GOVERNMENT GISEC IS THE IDEAL CYBERSECURITY PLATFORM TO PARTICIPATE & PARTNER WITH ENTERPRISE & GOVERNMENT ENTITIES IN THE REGION. ENQUIRE ABOUT EXHIBITING, SPEAKING & SPONSORSHIP +971 (04) 308 6469 I GISEC@DWTC.COM I GISEC.AE Official Distribution Partner Bronze Sponsor Officially Supported by Gold Sponsors Platinum Sponsor Officially Endorsed by CYBER SECURITY COUNCIL ﻲﻧاﺮﺒﻴﺴﻟا ﻦﻣﻷا ﺲﻠﺠﻣ Official Government Cybersecurity Partner Lead Strategic Partner

BUILDING A SMART FACTORY

KAPOOR,

- MIDDLE EAST, AFRICA & INDIA, EPICOR, UNCOVERS THE MES-SING LINK TO HELP MIDDLE EAST MANUFACTURERS IMPLEMENT

THEIR FACTORIES OF THE FUTURE

As the Middle East moves inexorably towards a digital, diverse economy, all eyes are on the manufacturing and heavy industry sectors. For example in 2021, the UAE’s Ministry of Industry and Advanced Technology (MoIAT) got together with 12 private companies (the so-called “Champions 4.0 Network”) and Departments of Economic Development in Abu Dhabi, Dubai, and Ajman, on an initiative known as “UAE Industry 4.0”. It was designed

to promote and empower the sector, as was the ministry’s recent followup program, Operation 300bn, which aims to increase the industrial sector’s GDP contribution from AED 133 billion (US$36.2 billion) to AED 300 billion (US$81.6 billion) by 2031.

Manufacturing is a diverse segment, and the support of regional governments spells “opportunity” for everyone. There is currently a boom in the residential property market, and that translates to good news for steel-

and cement-producing businesses.

If we factor in the announcement of larger, umbrella projects like the 15-minute city concept announced at Dubai EXPO, or the giga-projects underway in Saudi Arabia, we can easily foresee revolutions in mobility, and increased focus on food security leading to opportunities in the F&B market. The list goes on.

Having created an ideal ecosystem for manufacturers to thrive, the government has done its part. Now,

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it is up to the Middle East’s private sector to again innovate and seize the moment. Of course, we hear “innovate” and we think “technology”. The region’s manufacturers are no strangers to bold tech investment. Their leaps in digital transformation are already widely known, including the deployment of advanced ERP systems that tie into every detail of the business. But to go further and create the future envisioned by the region’s leaders, enterprises must recognise the missing link at the heart of their digital operations. The factories of the future will need an advanced mission-control centre, built on the manufacturing execution system (MES) — a platform that is an all-inone overseer, QA chief, and production manager for the Industry 4.0 business. There are four main reasons why MES will be indispensable.

1Accuracy

The principal function of an MES is to help decision makers understand how the business is operating. With the right clarity on what is not quite right, opportunities arise for adjustment and optimisation. An MES, for example, will be able to deliver information on the precise number of parts needed to make a specific number of product units and how long this batch will take to complete. While a human can do the same, the MES can do this in real time, allowing for quicker responses and more agile operations.

With an MES, managers can also track the number of workers and shifts needed to fulfil production demand, thereby rapidly calculating scheduling requirements, including any need for recruitment. The system is also useful in deriving optimum target values for overall equipment effectiveness (OEE). Indeed, overall accuracy boons put paid to the guesswork of the past and create a more knowledge-based enterprise.

2Real-time visibility

A side-effect of accuracy and speed is the much-lauded capability

of real-time visibility. Every business wants it, but it is sometimes elusive. Not for MES, which invariably has access to the right data at the right moment to add the right insights in the right context. Faster decisions enable quicker responses to a range of happenings, whether on the factory floor or in the markets outside.

MES-empowered enterprises can reduce their overall labour requirement by improving their inventory accuracy and checking part availability. No more walks to the plant floor, especially when managers have trustworthy, remote visibility into how parts are running, and machines are performing. The shrunken workforce will not be overburdened when machine operators and supervisors can always see the performance of their equipment and be proactive about improvements. And, of course, deskbound knowledge workers have the flexibility and access to systems necessary to work remotely.

3Innovation

There is the magic word. It is why decision makers want accurate, real-time visibility in the first place. “Innovation” is the end goal. MES goes hand in hand with Industry 4.0 and the Internet of Things (IoT). Sensors on factory and warehouse floors collect data and connect IT and OT.

Manufacturing execution systems sit in the middle as sophisticated intermediaries, relaying rich information as actionable insights. MES is inherently capable of playing well with other technologies because of its capability of digesting data flexibly. Augmented reality (AR), artificial intelligence (AI), and other hardware and software tools can integrate to enrich the overall knowledge ecosystem. Like the conductor of an orchestra, MES unites powerful individual elements and choreographs their interaction to create something greater than the sum of its parts.

4Onboarding

Let’s be clear. Automation alone cannot deliver the factory of the future. Human ingenuity is essential. But we live in a region plagued by a talent shortage. Here, MES can help. Not only are today’s candidates more attracted to employers who equip them with the latest technology, but MES solutions provide interfaces that are so intuitive that they themselves can bridge some of the talent gap. They can develop the skills of operators through rich training documentation and multimedia, work instructions and part drawings, process steps, and “call for help” assistance capabilities.

MES also has built-in training certification and skills-management capabilities. Much like a human supervisor, the platform can assess operators for their readiness to run a machine and certify them based on completed training and efficiency ratings. For example, an operator may not be allowed to run a machine alone until they achieve a 60% OEE. The MES can use its list of qualified personnel to schedule work tasks.

No MES-ing around

Opportunities abound for Middle East manufacturers amid the Industry 4.0 strategies and ambitions of regional governments, but as MES grows more popular, successes will flow more abundantly to those that have taken the implementation leap.

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WHY YOU NEED A CHIEF ZERO TRUST OFFICER

JOHN ENGATES, FIELD CTO AT CLOUDFLARE, ON WHY WE NEED A NEW ROLE FOR A NEW ERA OF CYBERSECURITY

distributed landscape. Organisations must adopt a holistic approach to security based on verifying the identity and trustworthiness of all users, devices, and systems that access their networks and data.

Zero Trust has been on the radar of business leaders and board members for some time now. However, Zero Trust is no longer just a concept being discussed; it’s now a mandate. With remote or hybrid work now the norm and cyber-attacks continuing to escalate, businesses realise they must take a fundamentally different approach to security. But as with any significant shift in strategy, implementation can be challenging, and efforts can sometimes stall. Although many firms have begun implementing Zero Trust methods and technologies, only some have fully implemented them throughout the organisation. For many large companies, this is the current status of their Zero Trust initiatives – stuck in the implementation phase.

Over the last few years, the topic of cyber security has moved from the IT department to the board room. The current climate of geopolitical and economic uncertainty has made the threat of cyber-attacks all the more pressing, with businesses of all sizes and across all industries feeling the impact. From the potential for a crippling ransomware attack to a data breach that could compromise sensitive consumer information, the risks are real and potentially catastrophic. Organisations are recognising the need for better

resilience and preparation regarding cybersecurity. It is not enough to simply react to attacks as they happen; companies must proactively prepare for the inevitable in their approach to cybersecurity.

The security approach that has gained the most traction in recent years is the concept of Zero Trust. The basic principle behind Zero Trust is simple: don’t trust anything; verify everything. The impetus for a modern Zero Trust architecture is that traditional perimeter-based (castleand-moat) security models are no longer sufficient in today’s digitally

A new leadership role emerges But what if there was a missing piece in the cybersecurity puzzle that could change everything? Enter the role of “Chief Zero Trust Officer” (CZTO) – a new position that we believe will become increasingly common in large organisations over the next year. The idea of companies potentially creating the role of Chief Zero Trust Officer evolved from conversations last year between Cloudflare’s Field CTO team members and US federal government agencies. A similar job function was first noted in the White House memorandum directing federal agencies to “move toward Zero Trust cybersecurity principles” and requiring agencies “designate and identify a Zero Trust strategy implementation lead for their organisation” within 30 days. In government, a role like this is often called a “czar,” but the title “chief” is more appropriate within a business.

Large organisations need strong leaders to efficiently get things done. Businesses assign the ultimate

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leadership responsibility to people with titles that begin with the word chief, such as Chief Executive Officer (CEO) or Chief Financial Officer (CFO). These positions exist to provide direction, set strategy, make critical decisions, and manage day-to-day operations and they are often accountable to the board for overall performance and success. Why a C-level for Zero Trust, and why now?

An old saying goes, “when everyone is responsible, no one is responsible.” As we consider the challenges in implementing Zero Trust within an enterprise, it appears that a lack of clear leadership and accountability is a significant issue. The question remains, who *exactly* is responsible for driving the adoption and execution of Zero Trust within the organisation?

Large enterprises need a single person responsible for driving the Zero Trust journey. This leader should be empowered with a clear mandate and have a singular focus: getting the enterprise to Zero Trust. This is where the idea of the Chief Zero Trust Officer was born. “Chief Zero Trust Officer” may seem like just a title, but it holds a lot of weight. It commands attention and can overcome many obstacles to Zero Trust.

Barriers to adoption

Implementing Zero Trust can be hindered by various technological challenges. Understanding and implementing the complex architecture of some vendors can take time, demand extensive training, or require a professional services engagement to acquire the necessary expertise. Identifying and verifying users and devices in a Zero Trust environment can also be a challenge. It requires an accurate inventory of the organisation’s user base, groups they’re a part of, and their applications and devices.

On the organisational side, coordination between different teams is crucial for effectively implementing Zero Trust. Breaking down the silos between IT, cybersecurity, and networking groups, establishing clear communication channels, and regular

meetings between team members can help achieve a cohesive security strategy. General resistance to change can also be a significant obstacle. Leaders should use techniques such as leading by example, transparent communication, and involving employees in the change process to mitigate it. Proactively addressing concerns, providing support, and creating employee training opportunities can also help ease the transition.

Responsibility and accountability –no matter what you call it

But why does an organisation need a CZTO? Is another C-level role essential? Why not assign someone already managing security within the CISO organisation? Of course, these are all valid questions. Think about it this way – companies should assign the title based on the level of strategic importance to the company. So, whether it’s Chief Zero Trust Officer, Head of Zero Trust, VP of Zero Trust, or something else, the title must command attention and come with

the power to break down silos and cut through bureaucracy.

New C-level titles aren’t without precedent. In recent years, we’ve seen the emergence of titles such as Chief Digital Transformation Officer, Chief eXperience Officer, Chief Customer Officer, and Chief Data Scientist. The Chief Zero Trust Officer title is likely not even a permanent role. What’s crucial is that the person holding the role has the authority and vision to drive the Zero Trust initiative forward, with the support of company leadership and the board of directors.

Getting to Zero Trust in 2023

Getting to Zero Trust security is now a mandate for many companies, as the traditional perimeter-based security model is no longer enough to protect against today’s sophisticated threats. To navigate the technical and organisational challenges that come with Zero Trust implementation, the leadership of a CZTO is crucial. The CZTO will lead the Zero Trust initiative, align teams and break down barriers to achieve a smooth rollout. The role of CZTO in the C-suite emphasizes the importance of Zero Trust in the company. It ensures that the Zero Trust initiative is given the necessary attention and resources to succeed. Organisations that appoint a CZTO now will be the ones that come out on top in the future.

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THE CHIEF ZERO TRUST OFFICER TITLE IS LIKELY NOT EVEN A PERMANENT ROLE. WHAT’S CRUCIAL IS THAT THE PERSON HOLDING THE ROLE HAS THE AUTHORITY AND VISION TO DRIVE THE ZERO TRUST INITIATIVE FORWARD, WITH THE SUPPORT OF COMPANY LEADERSHIP AND THE BOARD OF DIRECTORS.

Sophos XGS series

Sophos announced the expansion of its nextgeneration firewall portfolio with two new high-end, enterprise-grade XGS Series appliances. The new XGS 7500 and 8500 models provide unrivaled performance and protection for large enterprise and campus deployments, broadening market opportunities for the channel partners that serve them.

The new XGS 7500 and 8500 models deliver industry-best modular connectivity; highly scalable software-defined wide area network (SD-WAN) features; trusted traffic and application acceleration; high performance Transport Layer Security (TLS) inspection; threat protection; and enterprise-grade, high-availability and redundancy capabilities. Featuring high performance Xstream flow processors and central processing units (CPUs) with enterprise-grade acceleration, the models offer roughly 50% faster throughput than industry averages in their class:

• Up to 190 gigabits per second (Gbps) firewall throughput

• Up to 141 Gbps Internet Protocol Security (IPsec) virtual private network (VPN) throughput

• Up to 93 Gbps intrusion prevention system (IPS) throughput

• Up to 76 Gbps next-generation firewall (NGFW) throughput

• Up to 34 Gbps threat protection throughput

• Up to 24 Gbps Xstream Secure Sockets Layer (SSL) and TLS inspection

• Support for up to 58 million concurrent connections

• Support for up to 1.7 million new connections per second

Additional highlights include:

• Up to two times better energy efficiency than the industry average when using IPsec VPN

• High speed connectivity with two QSFP28 ports supporting speeds of up to 100 Gbps

• High capacity, high-speed random access memory (RAM) and non-volatile memory express (NVMe) solid-state drives for improved compatibility and storage

• Unique programmable Xstream architecture delivers unmatched levels of protection, performance and visibility

• Intelligent TLS inspection guarantees industry leading performance, flexibility and transparency into all encrypted traffic

• Deep packet inspection (DPI) engine delivers threat protection in a single streaming engine for antivirus, IPS, web, app control, and TLS inspection

• Network FastPath technology ensures automatic and policy-based intelligent offloading of trusted traffic processing at wire speed

Sophos Firewall is a key pillar of Sophos’ SASE strategy. It provides a more simplified, scalable and secure solution over traditional remote access VPN, and integrates with Sophos ZTNA (zero trust network access) under one unified management plane.

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RUCKUS ICX 8200 series

CommScope has announced that RUCKUS Networks is introducing a new series of entry-level, scalable edge switches with 25 Gbps uplink ports. This series includes the first entry-level enterprise switch to deliver fiber-tothe-room connectivity.

The ICX 8200 series is a wired platform optimized for wireless service delivery, purposefully designed to handle the next generation of wireless-first and IoT campus networks.

Key features and benefits of the ICX 8200 Switch series include:

1. Broad connectivity options: Gigabit, multigigabit edge ports and fiber-to-the-room within a single stackable switch series. 13 different stackable models including three models with fiber edge ports, three models with multigigabit edge ports and two fanless compact switches designed for in room deployment.

2. Maximum performance: 2.5/5/10GbE edge ports purpose built for latest generation multigigabit Wi-Fi APs with support for Wi-Fi 5, Wi-Fi 6/6E, Wi-Fi 7 and beyond. Up to 8x 25 Gbps SFP28 dual-mode uplink/ stacking ports to eliminate uplink bottleneck and provide low latency access to applications running in the cloud and deliver ultra-high-resolution video streaming.

NVIDIA STUDIO LAPTOPS

NVIDIA has announced the release of new Studio laptops powered by the latest GeForce RTX 40 Series Laptop GPUs. The new models being released by MSI and Razer are the first of many to be launched during the year. Featuring GeForce RTX 4090 and 4080 Laptop GPUs, the new Studio laptops use the NVIDIA Ada Lovelace architecture and fifth-generation Max-Q technologies for maximum performance and efficiency.

Backed by the NVIDIA Studio platform, these laptops give creators exclusive access tools and appsincluding NVIDIA Omniverse, Canvas and Broadcast — and deliver breathtaking visuals with full ray tracing and time-saving AI features. All of this is

3. High Power Delivery: Power next generation wireless access points and IoT devices with up to 90W per port of PoE power and high PoE budget up to 1480W per unit.

4. Maximum Deployment Flexibility: RUCKUS signature advanced stacking capabilities including long distance stacking up to 12 units on standard SFP+/SFP28 fiber ports up to 10km greatly simplifies deployment at the access and aggregation layer and eliminate the need for specialized hardware for stacking.

5. Enhanced Security: Provides both enhanced security and data privacy with VXLAN support for advanced network segmentation and data confidentiality.

6. Three Years of Technical Assistance Center Support Included: This is in addition to a limited lifetime warranty with every ICX 8200.

ICX 8200 series model with gigabit copper edge ports are available for purchase today. Models with fiber edge ports and multigigabit edge ports will be available in the first half of 2023.

powered by NVIDIA Studio Drivers, which help to optimize design workflows to help render and produce content at unimaginable speeds and framerates.

NVIDIA Studio laptops, powered by new GeForce RTX 40 Series Laptop GPUs, deliver the largestever generational leap in portable performance and are the world’s fastest laptops for creating and gaming. These creative powerhouses run up to 3x more efficiently than the previous generation, enabling users to power through creative workloads in a fraction of the time, all using thin, light laptops — with 14-inch designs coming soon for the first time.

MSI’s Stealth 17 Studio comes with up to a GeForce RTX 4090 Laptop GPU and an optional 17-inch, Mini LED 4K, 144Hz, 1000 Nits, DisplayHDR 1000 display — perfect for creators of all types. Meanwhile, Razer is also upgrading its Blade laptops with up to a GeForce

RTX 4090 Laptop GPU. Available with a 16- or 18-inch HDR-capable, dual-mode, mini-LED display, they feature a Creator mode that enables sharp, ultra-highdefinition+ native resolution at 120Hz. Both models come preinstalled with NVIDIA Broadcast which offers various broadcast and recording techniques, including an Eye Contact feature to make video conference presenters appear as if they’re looking at their audience, thus improving engagement.

41 CXO INSIGHT ME FEBRUARY 2023

DEVELOPING AN ESG STRATEGY

SUNIL PAUL, MD OF FINESSE, EXPLAINS THE ROLE OF GRC IN DELIVERING ESG

Over the last few years, another three-letter acronym made its way into the hallowed ranks of corporate goals. ESG, which stands for Environmental, Social, and Governance, refers to a set of standards for a company’s operations that impact not only its financial performance but also the well-being of society and the environment.

ESG has been gaining importance because investors and stakeholders increasingly recognise that a company’s long-term financial success is tied to its ability to manage and mitigate ESG risks and create positive ESG impact.

Consumers and investors are increasingly looking for companies that align with their values, including considering environmental sustainability, treating employees and other stakeholders fairly, and having good governance practices. This has led to a growing demand for ESG data and disclosure and has increased the pressure on companies to improve their ESG performance.

In addition, governments and regulators are also increasingly taking steps to promote ESG and to require companies to report on their ESG performance.

With climate change affecting every inhabited region across the globe and memories of the recent COVID-19 pandemic still fresh, there is increased momentum for ESG disclosures.

The increasing attention on ESG has also been fueled by the growing recognition of the risks posed by climate change, social and political instability, and other global challenges and by the need

for companies to adapt to a rapidly changing business environment.

So how should companies go about managing their ESG performance?

They could start with Governance, Risk, and Compliance (GRC). The G for Governance is the common component between ESG and GRC. Any good action plan will start with a strong and sustainable governance structure.

GRC refers to the processes and practices that organisations put in place to ensure that they are operating ethically, legally, and sustainably while also managing and mitigating risks and complying with relevant regulations and standards.

Many companies use GRC applications to define, implement, and monitor company-wide strategies for risk management. Extending the logic, companies can use their existing GRC applications to help manage their environmental and sustainability risks, identify areas for improvement, and implement policies and procedures that align with environmental sustainability goals.

Since ESG is a framework for assessing the sustainability and societal impact of companies and organisations, within this framework, environmental considerations, such as greenhouse gas emissions and other ecological impacts, play a critical role in evaluating an organisation’s sustainability. ESG analysis assesses an organisation’s exposure to the risks and opportunities associated with climate change.

By using GRC software, organisations can ensure that they are taking a systematic and comprehensive approach to

addressing climate change and reducing their environmental impact. For example, GRC software can help organisations:

• Monitor and report their carbon emissions, water usage, and other sustainability metrics.

• Assess the environmental impact of their operations, supply chain, and products.

• Identify and manage environmental risks and regulatory compliance requirements.

• Implement and enforce sustainability policies and procedures, such as reducing energy usage, recycling, and waste.

• Facilitate collaboration and communication between different departments and stakeholders on sustainability initiatives.

These can improve the company’s overall sustainability performance, enhance its reputation, and potentially increase its financial performance. Other areas where GRC can help include enabling companies to monitor and manage their compliance with relevant laws and regulations related to ESG, providing a centralised platform to track the progress of ESG initiatives and goals, and facilitating process workflows in support of ESG objectives.

GRC solutions can serve as a way to manage and dashboard ESG objectives, monitor processes and activities that support those objectives, and unify ESG data to give insight into whether organisations are continuing to make good on their ESG statements.

BLOG 42 CXO INSIGHT ME FEBRUARY 2023
CYBER SECURITY SOLUTIONS Dubai | Abu Dhabi | #teksalah solutions@teksalah.com www.teksalah.com Shielding Systems to Safeguard Data

Articles inside

DEVELOPING AN ESG STRATEGY

2min
page 42

NVIDIA STUDIO LAPTOPS

1min
page 41

RUCKUS ICX 8200 series

1min
page 41

Sophos XGS series

1min
page 40

WHY YOU NEED A CHIEF ZERO TRUST OFFICER

4min
pages 38-39

BUILDING A SMART FACTORY

4min
pages 36-37

THE NEXT GIANT LEAP

2min
pages 34-35

CHANGING THE RULES OF THE GAME

4min
pages 30-32

THE NEW NORMAL IN MANUFACTURING

6min
pages 28-29

THE FUTURE OF CUSTOMER EXPERIENCE

2min
page 26

CREATING CONNECTIONS

6min
pages 24-25

IS YOUR BOARD READY FOR NEW CYBER REGULATION?

4min
pages 22-23

THE MOVE TO SASE

4min
pages 20-21

A WINNING DEVSECOPS INNOVATION STRATEGY

2min
page 18

THE GREEN TECH REVOLUTION

5min
pages 14-16

THE INDUSTRIAL METAVERSE

3min
pages 12-13

ASTROLABS CELEBRATES SAUDI INNOVATION TO MARK ITS 10TH ANNIVERSARY IN RIYADH

3min
pages 10-11

NEW HIRES MAY SPARK INCREASE IN PHISHING ATTACKS IN 2023, PREDICTS MIMECAST

3min
page 9

RIVERBED ANNOUNCES UPDATES TO LEADERSHIP TEAM IN GCC

2min
page 8

ZOHO ANNOUNCES AED 100 MILLION INVESTMENT FOR EXPANSION

2min
page 7

AVEVA LAUNCHES NEW VERSION OF MANUFACTURING EXECUTION SYSTEM SOFTWARE

2min
page 6

GARTNER PREDICTS NEARLY HALF OF CYBERSECURITY LEADERS WILL CHANGE JOBS BY 2025

1min
page 6

CREATING SUSTAINABLE SUCCESS

1min
page 5

First-class loyalty for a new class of banking customers

1min
page 4
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