EC-MEA December 2022

Page 1

ONE STOP SHOP FOR CaaS

BUSINESS AGILITY

A founding group of technology experts has launched CaaS or CIO-as-a-Service at the sixth World CIO 200 Summit in Bangkok.

WWW.EC-MEA.COM PAGES 82 VOLUME 10 | ISSUE 05 DECEMBER 2022 INSIDE | INSIDE Grand finale of The World CIO 200 Summit in Bangkok
Venkatesh Mahadevan Darren Shaffer Pratap Pat Joshi Mohammed Mahnashi Manoj Saxena Patrick Doliny
FLIPPING TOWARDS INNOVATION Phone: +1 (732) 794-5918 | Email: hello@opxtechnology.com | www.opxtechnology.com Cloud & Digital Transformation ERP on Cloud Cyber Security Solutions Analytics & Automation AI & ML as a Service YOUR PARTNER FOR

CIO as a Service is real

The month of November saw the conclusion of The World CIO 200 Summit 2022 Roadshow in Bangkok, Thailand. The summit in Bangkok is the culmination of the year-long face-to-face and virtual events across Africa, Europe, Qatar, UAE, Kuwait, Bahrain, Saudi Arabia, Oman, Egypt, India, Singapore, and Pakistan. The road show broke ranks with at least two disruptive announcements and opportunities.

The first was the announcement of the launch of CaaS or CIO as a Service, a global platform designed to serve as a one-stop-shop and a go-to-platform for meeting all ICT needs of a customer. The global platform was launched by Venkatesh Mahadevan, CIO of Dubai Investment. The others to join the launch included Basil Ayass, Sales Leader, Google; Pratap Pat Joshi, Global CIO Manufacturing Forum; Manoj Saxena, Chairman, RosettaNet Singapore GS1 Digital standards; Patrick Doliny, Retired US Marine Officer and Career CIO, CISO; Mohammed Mahnashi, Digital Transformation Advisor, Saudi Electronic University; Darren Shaffer, former Military Board Member and CTO.

The second role breaker was the opportunity for CIOs to participate in pure-play, master-class management workshops, digressing from an only IT approach prevalent at most CIO regional events.

The first workshop was focussed on the CIO - CEO Journey conducted by Henry Santos, Serial Entrepreneur, COO, Board Member Global CIO, and Darren Shaffer, a former Military Caption Board Member, and CTO. The workshop focused on areas where the roles of the CEO and CIO leadership align and differ.

The second workshop on essential cyber security by Patrick Doliny, a Retired US Marine Officer and a career CIO, CISO focussed on a multitude of cybersecurity best practices. The fun interactive workshop was designed around the popular game go fish or cyber go-phishing where participants engage each other on an exciting cyber journey to catch the bad actor and recover.

The third workshop by Martin Roll was on Leadership in the 21st Century. A strategy expert, leadership advisor, and CEO mentor, Roll is an advisor to the Harvard Board and a Distinguished Fellow of INSEAD.

Turn these pages to learn more about the finale event organised by Global CIO Forum on 23-24 November.

Also in this issue, Nozomi Network’s initiative to build a partner programme that straddles OT, IoT and IT and our thought leadership opinion pieces, amongst others. Happy festive holidays with your family and loved ones in the days ahead.

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CONTENTS VIEWPOINT 03 EDITORIAL 06-07 Adding sustainability to Network as a Service 08 Making all IT workers feel welcome andvalued 09 Zero trust model in the enterprise DECEMBER 2022 VOLUME 10 ISSUE 05 70-73 GUEST COLUMN 74-79 SOCIALLY SPEAKING 61-65 REAL LIFE 22-59 COVER STORY 66-69 PRODUCTS 80-81 EXECUTIVE APPOINTMENTS 18-21 CHANNEL STREET How Nozomi is building an MSSP programme to manage OT-IoT threats 11-17 CHANNEL GRAND FINALE

ADDING SUSTAINABILITY TO NETWORK AS A SERVICE

Channel partners have an important role to play in connecting the dots between sustainable vendors and customers seeking to deliver green IT.

06 DECEMBER 2022 MEA
VIEWPOINT

In recent years, sustainability has soared to the top of the business agenda for most organisations. Channel partners have an important role to play in connecting the dots between sustainable vendors and customers seeking to deliver green IT.

If the IT industry were a country, it would be the fifth biggest emitter of greenhouse gases in the world. What is more, around fifty million tonnes of electronic-waste, e-waste is generated globally every year, and this figure only looks set to rise.

Tackling this environmental crisis requires a collaborative effort across the entire technology ecosystem, from vendors to consumers themselves. From a channel perspective, partners must now play a crucial role in helping their customers navigate sustainability challenges.

Channel analyst Canalys recently stated that for partners, being able to position sustainability as a part of your IT-as-a-service offers is going to be key to your resale success. Canalys also confirmed that for partners the environmental accountability of IT investments will be

partnering with an experienced NaaS vendor, channel companies can combine their unique understanding of their customer’s business with the vendor’s depth and breadth of product and solution knowledge to provide a network configuration that optimises energy consumption.

To further reduce the customer’s carbon footprint, modern network vendors also help deliver greener IT by sourcing electricity from renewables and utilising artificial intelligence, ML-based models to bring down power consumption.

Channel partners need to reassure their customers they are working with certified sustainable vendors to ensure climate-conscious initiatives are embedded at the very top of the value chain.

Reusing hardware

Today’s NaaS offerings are increasingly accompanied by IT asset disposition, that is ITAD services, a practice built around reusing, recycling or disposing of unwanted IT equipment in a safe and environmentally responsible way. In fact, 77% of businesses view ITAD assistance and e-waste services as an essential element of a NaaS offer according to IDC.

By factoring asset decommissioning strategies into their NaaS offering, channel partners can enable customers to participate in the circular economy, ensuring the life cycle of products is extended for as long as possible and reducing waste to a minimum.

one of customers’ top priorities within the next two to three years.

But what exactly does a sustainable IT-as-aservice offer look like?

Network-as-a-Service, NaaS is a great place to start. Recent research from Aruba has shown a clear appetite for this new network consumption model amongst end-users across EMEA. Already recognised by potential customers as a key enabler of financial flexibility and business agility, here’s how NaaS can also pull those allimportant sustainability levers.

Optimising energy consumption

NaaS provides end-customers with innovative and sustainable networks that they can rent from the experts on a subscription basis. By

Upcycling and remarketing idle equipment can give functional assets a second useful life, and in turn provide money back to the business for customers. Choosing pre-owned equipment where appropriate can help to expand budget for innovation projects where new technology is paramount.

Delivering data

As sustainability requirements increase, and with the eyes of the world watching, organisations will be challenged to deliver more sustainability and environmental reporting than ever before. But with networking skills a scarce resource and existing IT teams stretched to capacity trying to deliver against the continued demands of digital transformation, help is desperately needed to deliver back the necessary data.

With NaaS, organisations can again buy in this expertise – and rely on their channel partner to provide them with key metrics around power usage, carbon emissions, and end-of-life disposal. ë

VIEWPOINT
of businesses view IT asset disposition and e-waste services as an essential element of a NaaS offer according to IDC
77%
SHERIFA HADY
MEA 07 DECEMBER 2022
Vice President Channel EMEA, Aruba HPE.

MAKING ALL IT WORKERS FEEL WELCOME AND VALUED

Creating a diverse, inclusive workplace means creating a fair, equal organisation where everyone has the same opportunities for professional development.

Arecent Boston Consulting Group global study of 1,700 companies found that those with more diverse management teams have 19% higher revenues on average due to enhanced innovation. At a broader economic level, it has been estimated that closing the gender gap would add $28 trillion to the value of the global economy by 2025 – a 26% increase.

Human resources and people teams are the visible champions of diversity and inclusion, so they set the tone for the organisation. Creating a diverse and inclusive workplace goes far beyond compliance or public relations exercise. It means creating a genuinely fair and equal organisation where everyone has the same opportunities for professional development, career growth, and access to resources.

To do this, human resources and people leaders must understand their organisation, people, and problems. It means having a committed leadership team, being prepared to have difficult conversations, and building trust with their workforce. Anything less, and people will see straight through you.

Here are five practical tips to get you started on your journey:

#1 View diversity as an opportunity

Treat diversity as an opportunity to create a company people want to work for, not a compliance or risk mitigation issue. This requires a complete review of your business. It might mean taking a long, hard look at the company culture to identify the behaviours, policies, and practices that lead to discrimination and inequality and then creating strategies to remedy the situation.

#2 Establish trust with employees

People from previously disadvantaged or underrepresented backgrounds often don’t report discrimination for fear of victimisation. It is human resources’ job to build trust with them. Get to know your people, meet them, and cultivate relationships. Remember, not all diversity is visible. For example, there are many disabilities or mental health concerns you cannot see when you look at someone.

Above all else, believe your people. It is hard to accept that discrimination is happening in your organisation; your first reaction might be one of disbelief. It is important to deal with reported incidents through the appropriate channels, even if this means having challenging conversations with far-reaching consequences.

Not dealing with nor managing these issues poses a greater reputational risk to your business.

#3 Use data to understand the workforce

Use analytics to ascertain how many people from different backgrounds are in your organisation. Much of this data will be available in employment equity reports for companies with more than 50 employees. But also dig into the data to understand nuances like how much people from different backgrounds are paid and how long they stay.

#4 Do not sweep away bias

It is never easy for employees to report discrimination; it can sometimes be difficult to prove, and employees may not want to be seen to cause conflict. Send an anonymous survey to all your workers asking if they have experienced or seen discrimination, bias or inequality in your organisation, and act on the results. If you struggle to talk about these issues openly, bring in an expert to help facilitate trusting spaces.

#5 Target diverse populations in recruitment

Actively seek workers from underrepresented groups by engaging with recruiters or organisations who specialise in diversity. If your recruiters keep sending people with similar backgrounds, such as graduating from the same university or living in the same city, question them.

#6 Make people feel they belong

To foster diversity and equality in your workplace, you need to make people feel like they belong, are respected, have a voice, and will be given equal opportunities. This is where the inclusion piece of the puzzle comes in; your workplace is diverse and offers an environment where all people, regardless of surface or hidden level differences, feel welcome and valued. ë

VIEWPOINT 08 DECEMBER 2022 MEA
SONIA TSHABALALA Regional People Director, Sage AMEA.

ZERO TRUST MODEL IN THE ENTERPRISE

A zero-trust security model is deployed to ensure end to end cyber and cloud security and for internal as well as external stakeholders.

One of the latest buzzwords in the cyber security industry is a zero-trust security model. In short, a zero-trust model basically means you do not leave any room for errors at all and do not trust anyone or anything.

Owing to a hybrid workplace led by the after-effects of the pandemic and several emerging technologies such as the Metaverse, Web 3.0, Augmented Reality and Virtual Reality, the cybersecurity industry is working hard as usual to be as future-ready as possible. But since we are yet to see the evolution of these technologies and its impact, we need to tread carefully when using these technologies.

So, what exactly is Zero trust? Is it a new product? Is it a certification or a mere buzzword within the cybersecurity industry?

Some organisations are mistaking zero-trust for an actual product or certification. A zero-trust model is not an actual product or new certification in the cyber security industry. A zero-trust security model is deployed to ensure end to end cyber and cloud security. It is deployed for the security of our internal as well as external stakeholders.

One of the most important concepts it lives by is never trust, always verify. It also includes enabling of multi-factor authentication in order to grant access to any application or platform. Additionally, it is also about embracing micro-segmentation of security perimeters to avoid any security breach.

Any new security features or model is not completely risk-free without building compliance and good habits among the employees. Similarly, zero trust is all about building good habits within your employees. It is also about ensuring that your employees enable multi-factor authentication when accessing any apps or platforms.

It is an added form of compliance layer which should not be bypassed by the IT Admin, someone at the top level or even the deployer. There should be a top to bottom approach and a must for all employees to authenticated and validated continuously to build a better security posture within the organisation.

A zero-trust model is not just about multi-factor authentication. It also requires all the users to be authenticated, authorised and have their security configurations continuously validated to access any kind of application or data. This is done as an additional layer of security. This model does

have various benefits such as remote authentication and verification by your employees. This will allow them to work peacefully in a remote or a hybrid situation.

So, can you adopt the zero-trust model whenever you want?

Before deploying any new security model, we need to understand the return on investment. We need to know whether we really need it. We need to understand that while zero trust is an approach to secure the most important assets of the business, it is equally as important to know whether the juice is worth the squeeze. ë

Veeam Software.
VIEWPOINT MEA 09 DECEMBER 2022
Any new model is not completely risk-free without building compliance and good habits among the employees

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PROVEN, an outsourcing player in Saudi Arabia receives ISO 27001 security certification

PROVEN, a business outsourcing organisation in Saudi Arabia, announced it has been awarded the ISO 27001 certification, which is the international standard for information security management. Receiving the ISO 27001 demonstrates that PROVEN has invested in its

G42 Cloud partners with SAP to host RISE with SAP inside UAE

G42 Cloud, an operating company of G42, leading AI and Cloud Computing technology company, and global technology company SAP SE, announced their collaboration to accelerate and explore mutual opportunities to leverage SAP software solutions hosted on G42 Cloud to help benefit the effectiveness of the public sector, regulated industries and private sector customer initiatives in the UAE.

As part of the collaboration, SAP and G42 Cloud intend to support the delivery of SAP’s cutting-edge software applications including RISE with SAP. RISE with SAP is a step-by-step holistic offering that supports companies’ digital transformation and is tailored for each company’s complexity and starting point. The aim is

people, processes, and technology by ensuring that they are protected from cybercrime threats. The certification aims to aid the company, its employees, partners, and clients meet their business needs safely and effectively.

Achieving ISO 27001 confirms PROVEN’s

constant drive to develop market-leading services, measured against global standards of industry excellence and adhering to best industrial practices. ISO is known as one of the world’s most stringent and well-respected standards.

Additionally, ISO 27001 is one of the most extensively used and highly regarded information security standards. It defines how we maintain and handle information securely, including the necessary security controls, and identifies the objectives for an extensive Information Security Management System ISMS.

to go beyond a technical migration to the cloud, and instead enable companies to truly transform their business, realising a faster time-to-market for new capabilities and applications, and allowing for ongoing transformation.

This technology stack will be powered by G42 Cloud’s secure and scalable infrastructure that will offer customers a wide range of benefits including data sovereignty, scalability, and enhanced business outcomes, further accelerating the customer’s digital transformation and innovation journey.

CHANNEL
Uzma Mohsin, Business Excellence Lead, PROVEN. (Left to right) Omer Saleem, Deputy CEO of PROVEN with Rami Ismail and Naif Al Otaibi, Directors of PROVEN Arabia
MEA 11 DECEMBER 2022
(Left to right) Sergio Maccotta, Senior Vice President, Middle East South, SAP and Talal Al Kaissi, CEO of G42 Cloud.

Cohesity, Lenovo partner to deliver modern data security on ThinkSystem servers

Building on their global reselling relationship, established in 2021, Cohesity and Lenovo have now teamed up to deliver pretested and certified solutions bringing Cohesity’s modern data security and management platform on Lenovo’s ThinkSystem servers. The expanded partnership delivers validated solutions designed to protect enterprise data from on-premises to the cloud and address three of today’s highest-priority business issues—security, cloud, and data management.

Customers will benefit from simplified ordering processes and a faster time to value, as the integrated solutions and their technical interoperability have been certified. The solutions can be ordered globally and directly from the Lenovo Data Centre Solution Configurator DCSC, which provides one-stop purchasing for the Cohesity SKUs, including support and services for all phases of the solution lifecycle.

Organisations adopting these certified solutions will get access to Cohesity’s data security and management platform for a comprehensive range of services like backup and recovery, disaster recovery, file and object services, dev, test, and data compliance, security, and analytics—helping to reduce complexity and costs of operations, while

enhancing business continuity and cyber resilience. Customers and partners can also choose between the Intel and AMD-based servers offered by Lenovo, including the Lenovo ThinkSystem SR650 48TB, 96TB and SR645 24TB, 36TB to meet their broad range of technical and budgetary requirements. This makes Lenovo the only Cohesity Certified Platform Partner that covers both processor architectures.

Cisco has announced its goal to provide digital skills training to 25 million learners globally over the next ten years through its Cisco Networking Academy program. By 2025, 97 million new jobs will be created due to advances in technology and automation, and Cisco is helping millions of people around the globe gain access to those jobs by empowering the workforce of the future with education and career opportunities through its Networking Academy.

Since the introduction of Cisco Networking Academy in the Middle East and Africa, more than 2.68 million students have been trained and upskilled, of which 33% are female. Out of the top 10 countries for female participation globally since the program’s inception, 6 are located within the Middle East and Africa.

During Cisco’s 2022 fiscal year alone, more than 706,000 students were enrolled in Cisco Networking Academy courses across 67 countries in the region. These students were supported by approximately 4,500 instructors, working across 1,770 academies in the Middle East and Africa.

Raqmiyat partners with Ivalua to offer digitalisation of procurement for Middle East enterprises

Raqmiyat, a system integrator and digital enabler, announced a partnership with Ivalua, a global leader in spend management. This partnership is to enable the eProcurement digitalisation of an increasing number of organisations in the Middle East, whose digitalisation efforts continue to be largely driven by the need to comply with guidelines set by local governments.

Ivalua enables a global and diversified customer base to effectively manage spend and suppliers on a single platform. Thanks to the automation, transparency and seamless collaboration tools offered by Ivalua’s unified, cloud-based spend management platform, customers can improve profitability, drive innovation, improve ESG performance, and reduce risk.

Gregg Petersen, Regional Director, MEA, Cohesity.
Cisco’s Networking Academy sets target to provide digital skills to 25 million over ten years
Reem Asaad, Vice President, Cisco Middle East and Africa
CHANNEL 12 DECEMBER 2022 MEA
(Left to right) Bahaa Eddine Al Indary, General Manager, Raqmiyat and Alexander Rembecki, Alliances Director DACH, CEE, and ME, Ivalua.

Orange, Netskope partner to deliver SSE embedded into Orange Telco Cloud Platform

Cyberdefense’s security expertise and Netskope’s global security private cloud footprint and SSE leadership, enabling Orange Business Services to deliver consistent internet security on and off the network. This will help protect enterprise customers from data loss and the growing volume of sophisticated threats across cloud, web and private applications, with the full attributes of a cloud-native platform.

The co-managed solution will reduce complexity for enterprises, providing continuously updated cloud security via the Orange Business Services Telco Cloud Platform. Telco Cloud Platform is a revolution in the way networks are built, run, and managed with enhanced performance. The software-defined approach optimised for telco workloads allows for greater agility and cost reduction.

Orange Business Services, a global networknative digital services company, Orange Cyberdefense, a cybersecurity services provider, and Netskope, a vendor in secure access service edge, are partnering to deliver a new SSE Security Service Edge solution embed-

ded into the Orange Telco Cloud Platform. The enhanced solution is designed to deliver optimal performance with maximised security, meaning enterprises will no longer need to find a compromise between the two. The partnership will leverage Orange

This innovative hybrid architecture embeds Netskope’s points-of-presence POPs within the Orange network, strengthening the Orange customer value proposition by delivering the benefits of the Orange network, including speed and agility, while enabling customers to tap into the power of Netskope Intelligent SSE.

Unified customer experience platform, Sprinklr now hosted locally in UAE

Sprinklr, the unified customer experience management platform for modern enterprises, announced its expanded presence in the Middle East with a data hosting solution in the UAE, giving customers the option to host their data in the UAE through Sprinklr’s hosting services provider rather than on a data center in the US or Europe.

The ability to host data in the UAE is critical to support regional growth for customers, particularly for brands in the financial services, telecommunications, and public sector industries. As with all of Sprinklr’s data hosting locations, UAE data hosting will be backed by Sprinklr’s global support teams, technical resources, and subprocessors.

In the last year, Sprinklr roughly doubled its presence in the MEA region, with the UAE at the forefront of the company’s growth. Sprinklr now supports over 100 of the top companies in the region across retail, financial services, telecommunications, travel & hospitality and the public sector. A data hosting solution in the UAE will support the positive growth trend and help Sprinklr continue to exceed customer requirements for data security and compliance.

CHANNEL
MEA 13 DECEMBER 2022
Haitham Elkhatib, Vice President of MEA, Sprinklr.

Help AG partners with ExtraHop to offer SaaS network monitoring as part of MSP portfolio

Help AG, the cybersecurity arm of e& enterprise has announced a partnership with ExtraHop, a vendor in cloud-native network intelligence, to provide customers in UAE and KSA with enhanced cybersecurity solutions.

This strategic partnership will help diversify Help AG’s current cybersecurity offering and strengthen its presence in the cloud-native secu-

rity solutions market. Help AG customers will now be able to benefit from fully SaaS-based network monitoring as part of its Managed Security Services portfolio with the addition of the ExtraHop Revealx 360 network detection and response NDR platform, a cloud-native solution for visibility, detection and response across hybrid, multicloud, containerised and

Finesse launches 1CXO SaaS with six centres of excellence for businesses

Post-pandemic, the digital transformation agenda for most organisations has accelerated like never before. Environment today is changing at a spinning rate. With unstable market dynamics and rising business opportunities, the need for holistic Business and Technology alignment has increased. There is an imperative need to work across departments and include them in the fabric of Digital Transformation. Along with this transformation comes the need to look at compliance, risk, and security for the entire ecosystem and not just IT infrastructure. To manage this risk and complexity, businesses need support in terms of domain expertise, industry expertise, and change management among others.

With fast changing environment, organisations grapple with getting right leaders, advisors, and change champions. To help organisations weather these storms of uncertainty without emptying their treasure troves,

Finesse has launched 1CXO service CXOaaS.

1CxO is a set of six Centres of Excellence designed for businesses in these dynamic times. The suite consists of

• Information Security Office

• Data Privacy Office

• Regulatory Office

• Digital Transformation Office

• Customer Experience Office

• Chief Information Office

Each office is led by an experienced leader who works with an in-house team of SMEs. The leaders of each Centre of Excellence bring with them experience across industries, cultures, and geographies to help clients integrate the best practices. Each Centre of Excellence provides services to multiple customers, on a retainer model. Customers pay for 1CXO only for service days rendered, so it proves to be cost effective. The duration of the engagement can be short term or long term.

IoT environments.

In line with Help AG’s service-centric led approach, the service will cover a range of use cases across security, cloud and IoT operations including lateral movement detection, software supply chain attacks detection, unusual network activity detection, security hygiene enhancement, sensitive data monitoring, network forensics readiness, and advanced threats hunting. It will ensure end-to-end cloud security through cloud native integrations with orchestration systems, EDR and SIEM, that will further increase the visibility of Help AG’s nextgen SOC.

The flexibility of 1CXO to structure itself around a customer’s requirement makes it applicable to Large as well as SMB customers. Based on the deliverables for a client, a team of SMEs can be picked from across the six Centres of Excellence. 1CxO will play a very important role in shaping and driving the transformation and digitalisation strategy including working across different lines of business to deliver a Business and Customer centric Digital Transformation.

CHANNEL
14 DECEMBER 2022 MEA
Arti Gupta, Chief Digital Transformation Officer, Finesse - Europe

VMware Sovereign Cloud providers has more than doubled to 25 partners globally

VMware, announced the number of VMware Sovereign Cloud providers has more than doubled to 25 partners globally. VMware is also announcing VMware Tanzu on sovereign cloud, VMware Aria Operations Compliance pack for sovereign clouds, and new open ecosystem solutions. Together these new Sovereign SaaS innovations will enable partners to deliver services equivalent to those found in public clouds, while also better assuring data is pro-

tected, compliant, and resident within national territories.

With sovereign SaaS, VMware Sovereign Cloud Providers can build highly differentiated solutions to capture modern workloads, simplify operations with continuous compliance monitoring, and support data monetization with lower risk.

The VMware Sovereign Cloud Framework and associated capabilities that make up the

VMware Sovereign Cloud Initiative are aligned with Gaia-X and other global data sovereignty regulations to further simplify the delivery of sovereign clouds. New VMware Sovereign Cloud providers include Advanced Wireless Network, Fundaments BV, Hitachi, Macquarie Government, National Information Center, NCS, PT Aplikanusa Lintsarta, Tata Communications and Credence.

VMware is now building a portfolio of sovereign SaaS offerings. Partners deliver sovereign SaaS natively using VMware software running in their sovereign cloud data centers, completely disconnected from the public Internet. All data remains resident and exists only within a given sovereign region, with no access by foreign jurisdictions, no data or meta data leaves the country or provider.

JAGGAER launches Amplify Global Alliance Partner Programme in Middle East

JAGGAER, officially launched the company’s Amplify Global Alliance Partner Program in the Middle East region. The first company in the UAE to partner with JAGGAER is Alpha Data, one of the leading Digital Transformation providers & System Integrators in the Middle East with more than 40 years of experience delivering world-class solutions covering everything from the Internet of Things, IoT, mobility, security, big data, and the cloud. Alpha Data will now be an integral conduit of JAGGAER solutions as part of the new partnership.

The partnership was announced during JAGGAER’s Middle East and Africa Regional User Group event, which took place on 8 November, with several procurement leaders outlining their vision for 2023 with discussions focused on innovative strategies, best practices for better ROI and the frameworks required to put them into practice.

Every Amplify Program activity is organised around the three principles of simplify, enable, and grow. Each charge involves projects and organisational adjustments that allow us to prioritise partner success to drive sustainable growth.

The JAGGAER Amplify Global Partner Program includes a structured Alliance Partner tiering system, with each tier granting specific benefits to qualifying partner organisations. Partners can use their tier level for marketing, sales, or social media purposes to promote their proficiency in selling and delivering JAGGAER products.

Other companies joining Alpha Data in JAGGAER’s Amplify Global

Partners Program include Accenture, Inetum, Jude, Malomatia, Techedge Arabia, and egabi Solutions, with a pipeline of additional companies to be announced.

As part of JAGGAER’s commitment to addressing challenges relating to supply chain disruption, material scarcity and the global talent shortage, the company has revealed its vision of Autonomous Commerce, whereby buying crucial goods or services for a business is as easy as shopping online as a consumer.

CHANNEL MEA 15 DECEMBER 2022
(Left to right) Sajeev Perunnelly, Director Enterprise Computing, Alpha Data; and Hany Mosbeh, Senior Vice President, Middle East and Africa, JAGGAER.

Jumbo Serve signs agreement with Huawei Consumer UAE for maintenance, repair services

Jumbo Serve, one of the UAE’s leading aftersales service providers for consumer electronics, durables, home appliances and IT products, has signed a service agreement with Huawei

sccc Alibaba Cloud signs MoUs with Kaspersky,

at Black Hat

The Saudi cloud computing company, sccc Alibaba Cloud, a leader in cloud computing services and digital transformation in the Kingdom, signed six memorandums of understanding with several international companies specialized in cybersecurity, during its participation as an infrastructure partner in the “Black Hat” event, one of the largest events in the field of cybersecurity, in the region. The event was organized as part of the activities of the Riyadh Season 2022, with participation of many local and international companies in the cybersecurity field, between November 15 to 17 at the Riyadh Front.

sccc Alibaba Cloud signed MoUs with Kaspersky, Fortinet, Logrhyhm, Palo Alto, A10 and F5. The signing aimed at finding joint ways of cooperation to localize the

A division of Jumbo Electronics, Jumbo Serve’s ambit covers the full spectrum of dealer management, customer management and break-fix services, adding to its portfolio of over 40 brand associations.

In line with the agreement, Jumbo Serve will cater to Huawei’s customers in both B2C and B2B segments in the UAE and covers its consumer products such as laptops, tablets, routers and accessories. The service specialist will also undertake Huawei smartphone servicing at Huawei’s own service centers and stores.

Jumbo Serve presently services several other brands in the IT products category, including Lenovo, Acer, HP, MSI and Samsung. In smartphones category, Jumbo Serve boasts of names such as Samsung, Oppo, Lava, and Tecno.

Following COVID, Jumbo Serve has strengthened its digital muscle by automating its operations with complete end-to-end tracking and seamless customer updates. With the largest network of 14 service centres across all the emirates, Jumbo Serve has capabilities covering onsite, collection, delivery, pickup and carry-in services, with skills to handle different levels of services, including warranty and outof-warranty services.

latest solutions and leading technologies in the field of cybersecurity for Alibaba Cloud, through utilizing the technology in the Kingdom, to increase awareness on cloud cybersecurity technologies. The company seeks to enable its customers and partners to abide by and comply with the highest standards of cybersecurity for a better digital infrastructure in Saudi Arabia.

Consumer Business Group to manage the provision of spare parts, maintenance and repair services for its entire range of products in the UAE.
Fortinet, Logrhyhm, Palo Alto, A10, F5
CHANNEL 16 DECEMBER 2022 MEA

200+ users, channel partners attend VeeamON in Riyadh around native cloud, Kubernetes

• Kasten by Veeam K100, the most complete enterprise data management solution to date purpose-built for Kubernetes; and cloud-native solutions, for AWS, Azure and Google Cloud.

Veeam Software, hosted 200 registered attendees, customers, partners and industry experts at its VeeamON Tour in Riyadh, Saudi Arabia recently. The event at Al Ammariyah Hills Resort connected leading IT experts and visionaries throughout the region to share and learn about the hottest topics in the market, including Modern Data Protection, ransomware, native cloud and Kubernetes.

VeeamON Tour attendees were given a demonstration of Veeam’s latest technologies including:

• Veeam Backup & Replication v12 – the latest version of the award-winning backup solution that is at the epicenter of the future of modern data protection. New capabilities introduced with V12 will

include:

• Backups going direct to object storage and cloud-based agents are also available as cloud-accelerated features

• With immutability everywhere, ransomware can be recovered and threats against cyberattacks can be stopped even faster; Improves efficiency at scale with additional enterprise application support and innovations

• A new Veeam Backup & Replication plugin for Kasten by Veeam K10 V5.0 provides visibility and management for Kubernetes data protection.

• Veeam Backup for Microsoft 365 v7

• Newly launched Veeam Backup for Salesforce

The incidence of ransomware is on the rise, regionally, 88% of UAE and 84% of Saudi Arabian organizations fell prey to ransomware attacks in 2021. Against this backdrop VeeamON Tour Riyadh presented ‘Ransomware Best Practices for Secure Backup & Recovery’. Attendees discovered how secure backup is an organization’s last line of defense against ransomware and what they can do to counter the need to pay a ransom to recover their data.

For businesses in the Middle East to win the ransomware battle, they must do three things –educate their employees, implement the 3-2-11-0 backup rule requiring 3 copies of data and have a remediation plan of a full Backup and Disaster Recovery strategy, that gives them the ability to recover data in event of a ransomware attack.

For businesses in the Middle East to win the ransomware battle, they must do three things –educate their employees, implement the 3-2-11-0 backup rule requiring 3 copies of data and have a remediation plan of a full Backup and Disaster Recovery strategy, that gives them the ability to recover data in event of a ransomware attack.

Dataiku enhances 300+ Partner Network around technologies,

resell, services

Dataiku, the platform for Everyday AI, announced it has enhanced the Dataiku Partner Network to help partners build joint offerings and go-to-market capabilities for co-sales, service delivery, and resell routes to market to serve companies on their AI journey better. Members of this Partner Network will work with Dataiku to build a world-class partner ecosystem that delivers high-value AI and ML offerings at scale.

Today, the Dataiku Partner Network has a global reach across over 50 countries with 3,000, and growing Dataiku certifications. The network includes over 325 cloud, ISV, systems integrator, and resell partners, including AI innovators – AWS, Google Cloud, Microsoft Azure, Snowflake, Deloitte, Capgemini, Slalom, and many others.

The Dataiku Partner Network was created to build a legion of AI partners of all types, including technology partners who are now able to offer an AI platform that works seamlessly with their own platform; resell partners looking to

expand their product portfolio with a leading AI platform that their customers need; and services partners who can support their client’s adoption of the Dataiku platform to use their data across a broader set of users than was ever before available.

Members of the enhanced Dataiku Partner Network will enjoy benefits such as:

• New partner tiering model with badges to showcase expertise and achievements

• Early insights into important Dataiku product and company announcements

• Exclusive access to Dataiku training, sales enablement, and events

• Richer onboarding support to accelerate business goals

• Spur demand generation with marketing assets, programs, and campaigns

David Tharp, SVP of Ecosystems and Alliances at Dataiku.
CHANNEL MEA 17 DECEMBER 2022
Mohamad Rizk, Regional Director, Middle East and CIS at Veeam Software presenting the keynote address at the VeeamON Tour in Riyadh.

HOW NOZOMI IS BUILDING AN MSSP PROGRAMME TO MANAGE OT-IOT THREATS

[EC] Nozomi Networks MSSP Partner Programme mentions two types of partner classes with the launch spread over a year. Give us an update on what have been the developments in this partner programme?

[Chet Namboodri] The MSSP announcement we made is an extension of what we had previously announced about a year ago in terms of the MSSP programme that we had launched with our initial tranche of Elite members as we refer to them. The difference

here is the target audience with the Elite was for customer demand that we have been seeing from large enterprises. These are end users who have OT and who have needs for industrial cybersecurity but are unable to address those needs and have been looking for consultants to help fill that gap.

The initial MSSP Elite launch was with what two major companies Accenture and IBM. It also included Mandiant, and several others, who were a part of the initial launch. That was to address the large enterprise with hundreds of plants, globally, where there is a need for scale, and these bigger firms are the ones who can address that need.

CHANNEL STREET 18 DECEMBER 2022 MEA
Chet Namboodri talks to Enterprise Channels MEA on the skills, services, capabilities, pricing models of its MSSP Elite and Focus partners.
CHANNEL STREET CHET NAMBOODRI Senior Vice President, Business Development and Alliances, Nozomi Networks. MEA 19 DECEMBER 2022

NOZOMI NETWORKS MSSP PARTNER PROGRAMME

Launched in August 2021, Nozomi Networks MSSP Partner Programme is the industry’s first programme for OT and IoT managed security services. The programme fully equips MSSPs with Nozomi Networks’ OT and IoT cybersecurity solutions, expertise and selling resources. The programme enables MSSPs to generate additional revenue through new lines of business.

Today a strong bench of MSSP Elite and MSSP Focus partners are helping customers strengthen OT and IoT security and resilience. Nozomi Networks’ MSSP Programme goes beyond basic OT and IoT security integrations to support partners with the resources they need: Specialised training and certifications ensure partners are fully qualified to support customers with deep network visibility, advanced monitoring, and actionable intelligence for the best possible incident response. Partners have access to an MSSP framework to further develop their industrial security expertise, grow their MSSP practice, expand their portfolio of services, and increase customer satisfaction. Partners can incorporate full suite of cloud-based and on-premises solutions and manage them on behalf of their customers. Many of Nozomi Networks MSSP partners own Vantage licenses to provide private label services through Vantage’s multi-tenant and MSSP-oriented licensing capabilities.

[EC] What is the differentiation between Elite and Focus MSSP channel partners?

[Chet Namboodri] We have tried to enable this in a way that we do not differentiate between the types of services that are available. The services that are involved with our MSSP programme, whether it is Elite or Focus, include assessment, it can be an initial or periodic consulting type service. We have what we refer to as our MSSP starter kit, which leverages the Vantage SaaS product to enable engagement around a suitable price point, and gets things started.

We have a Threat Intelligence feed for OT and IoT, which is again a defined SaaS offering, that we have offer untethered from the guardian appliances. MSSPs can purchase our threat feed as part of an offering that helps to protect their end-user customers.

There is design, deploy and configuration, and health check type services. This is on the front end of a managed services engagement where a customer and end-user do not have the technology platforms in place to enable visibility back to the SOC.

[EC] What is the value add provided by the MSSP channel partners?

[Chet Namboodri] Whether they have Nozomi installed previously, we are enabling the managed service provider to do the deployment. We can do that in a number of different ways. It can be through a resell mechanism, or it can actually be where the MSSP is.

MSSP are holding the licenses, holding the assets and providing services surrounding those assets which they can deploy within the customer’s environment. Platform threat and asset management capabilities are made available through both Elite and Focus MSSP partners. Assessment, threat intelligence, design, deploy configuration, incident response, this is something that is under development.

In terms of the end user, the target is still enterprise, but it moves us into medium and small businesses. Many large enterprises have some OT cyber expertise within their house, but most medium and small operating companies do not. Therefore, there is a bigger need at the right price points for this type of managed service. We are enabling that with our technology, that is ultimately the intent of the programme.

[EC] What is the importance of cyber security forensics and remediation in OT and IoT?

[Chet Namboodri] With what has been going on within Europe, there has been a heightened number of incidents and nationstate-sponsored attacks that we saw going back to Colonial Pipeline here in the US. There are a number of different attack vectors that are coming from nation-states, as well as malware

CHANNEL STREET
The first level of value that our end users get from a Nozomi deployment is visibility and lighting up of the assets
20 DECEMBER 2022 MEA

that has found its way into the OT side of things. In terms of forensic analysis and doing incident response, that is certainly a capability that is important for OT. We have partnered with Mandiant and done some work together in the past.

The first level of value that our end users get from a Nozomi deployment, whether it is through an MSSP or otherwise, is visibility and lighting up of the assets. What do I have in my OT environment? What are the vulnerabilities that are associated with those assets? What is their current state, and then we go from there with behaviour analytics that identify anomalies, and threat identification.

[EC] Describe the pricing model for MSSP partner programme?

[Chet Namboodri] We have a price list and that is where we make reference to discounting. That is a price that we go out with. With MSSPs it is a bit more standardised, because you are less involved with project work, and more involved with ongoing monitoring, managed services. As more and

more customers are brought into the MSSP fold, there are significant price breaks as you move into higher and higher level of assets. For our SaaS offering Vantage, the way we have structured the price is based on assets that are identified and managed as part of our offerings. It is asset count, and particularly for a private label, and again. We make the private label offering where the MSSP partner is holding the license, and we make that available to both Elite and Focus alike.

[EC] How are MSSP partners coexisting with IT side of operations?

[Chet Namboodri] One of the things that Nozomi Networks does is to help bring together the SOC analytics and visibility that is happening on the enterprise IT side of things, and to correlate and recognise the convergence. Nozomi Networks recognises there is a lot of malwares that goes EastWest, and finds its way into OT environment, that originates from IT. Having those correlations is important and where we can enable that from the SOC visibility is a big part of what we do. ë

CHANNEL STREET MEA 21 DECEMBER 2022
Many large enterprises have some OT cyber expertise within their house, but most medium and small operating companies do not
COVER STORY 22 DECEMBER 2022 MEA

GRAND FINALE

This year’s finale concluded by bringing together 230+ enterprise end users and IT executives from 40+ countries to share trends, best practices, health and wellness, and achievements of IT champions.

COVER STORY MEA 23 DECEMBER 2022

THE WORLD CIO200 SUMMIT

One stop shop for business agility

This is a one-stop platform to help organisations get information, expert services, and consultation for their technology needs and projects from CIOs.

While technology players and vendors have long been offering their products on the service or payfor-use model, the primary drivers of enterprise technology or CIOs have always been restricted in their roles within an organisation. Similarly, organisations too have been limited in their ability to benefit from the globally available pool of technology experts.

To help enterprises meet their technology challenges, a group of technology experts launched CaaS or CIO-as-a-Service at the sixth World CIO 200 Summit at the Grand Fourwings Convention Hotel in Bangkok.

The global platform, designed to serve as a one-stop-shop and a goto-platform for meeting all enterprise ICT needs, was launched on the inaugural day of the summit by Venkatesh Mahadevan, CIO of Dubai Investment. The others to join the launch included Basil Ayass, Sales Leader, Google; Pratap Pat Joshi, Global CIO Manufacturing Forum; Manoj Saxena, Chairman, RosettaNet Singapore GS1 Digital standards; Patrick Doliny, Retired US Marine Officer and Career CIO, CISO; Mohammed Mahnashi, Digital Transformation Advisor, Saudi Electronic University; Darren Shaffer, former Military Board Member and CTO.

The second day’s proceeding at the summit also saw the announcement

COVER STORY
24 DECEMBER 2022 MEA
(Left to right) Patrick Doliny, Venkatesh Mahadevan, Darren Shaffer, Pratap Pat Joshi, Mohammed Mahnashi, Manoj Saxena, and Basil Ayass.

To help enterprises meet their technology challenges, a group of technology experts launched CaaS or CIO-as-a-Service

Decentralised

of the partners who joined hands with CaaS, just a day after its launch, which was a testament to the strong relevance that it brings to today’s market. The discussion was led by Venkatesh Mahadevan, CIO at Dubai Investments, along with Henry Santos, Founder and Board Member of OPX America, and Uday Birajda, CEO and Co-Founder of Automation Edge.

How it began

In 2022, two technology evangelists met at an airport lounge and got talking, since their flight was delayed by a few hours. The discussion led them to come out with the concept of a one-stop shop or a platform that could help organisations get information, expert service, and consultation for their technology needs and projects.

Set up as an ultra-modern and state-of-the-art DAO or Decentralised Autonomous Organisation, CaaS is a community-led entity with no central authority. It will be driven by an independent group of experts as an autonomous and transparent platform, complete with smart contracts to lay the foundational rules and execute agreed-upon decisions. The platform also plans to get the codes publicly audited by the community.

The platform aims to build a community of people who trust each other and offer solutions to clients by

leveraging the power of collaboration, competency, and trust. The platform will also help businesses leverage the best and most appropriate technology solutions by building stronger relationships between technology champions and enterprises, product vendors and integrators with clients, and the community itself.

Established in 2017, the World CIO200 Summit is a multi-country CIO felicitation ceremony that recognises the achievements of digital leaders of today who have transformed the IT infrastructure of their organisations driving growth and change. The summit in Bangkok is the culmination of the year-long faceto-face and virtual celebrations across Africa, Europe, Qatar, UAE, Kuwait, Bahrain, KSA, Oman, Egypt, India, Singapore, and Pakistan editions of the event.

The grand finale of the World CIO 200 Summit in Bangkok was sponsored by CAAS as the strategic partner and StorIT, Automation Edge, Dell Technologies, Mindware, Redington, Logitech, and OPX Technology as platinum partners. It was supported by Veritas, Alteryx, Infinite Blue, and 3i Infotech as gold partners.

The silver partners included Western Digital, Forcespot, Accops, Veeam, NetApp, Logicom, Pure Storage, TechnePlus, Kissflow, DLlink, Exotel, and Finesse. The summit was supported by Infoblox, HTP, BITS Secure, SecureNet; RNS Technology Services, and MetaO.

Set up as a
Autonomous Organisation, CaaS is a community-led entity with no central authority
It will be driven by smart contracts to lay the foundational rules and execute agreed-upon decisions
COVER STORY MEA 25 DECEMBER 2022
The platform aims to build a community of people who trust each other and offer solutions to clients

THE WORLD CIO200 SUMMIT

Highlights of World CIO 200 Summit Finale in Bangkok, day one

This year’s finale brought together 230+ enterprise end users and IT executives from 40+ countries to share trends, best practices, health and wellness, and achievements of IT champions.

It was the congregation of the best technology implementors and digital transformation experts at the inaugural day of the The World CIO 200 Summit, Grand Finale. The seventh edition of the world’s largest CIO excellence and leadership programme organised by GEC Media and Global CIO Forum commenced at the Grand Fourwings, Convention Hotel in Bangkok.

The year’s summit revolves around the theme of LeadX or leading through transformation and focuses on borderless technologies, fearless ambitions, and limitless leadership. The summit which saw an amalgamation of over 200+ technology experts from across 40+ countries celebrated the bold spirit of technology leaders in exceeding challenges and barriers while bringing innovative solutions forward and driving organisational growth through technology interventions and digital transformations.

Established in 2017, the World CIO200 Summit is a multi-country CIO felicitation ceremony that recognises the achievements of digital

leaders of today who have transformed the IT infrastructure of their organisations driving growth and change. The summit in Bangkok is the culmination of the year-long face-to-face and virtual celebrations across Africa, Europe, Qatar, UAE, Kuwait, Bahrain, KSA, Oman, Egypt, India, Singapore, and Pakistan editions of the event.

The grand finale of the World CIO 200 Summit in Bangkok was sponsored by CAAS as the strategic partner and StorIT, Automation Edge, Dell Technologies, Mindware, Redington, Logitech, and OPX Technology as platinum partners. It was supported by Veritas, Alteryx, Infinite Blue, and 3i Infotech as gold partners.

The silver partners included Western Digital, Forcespot, Accops, Veeam, NetApp, Logicom, Pure Storage, TechnePlus, Kissflow, DLlink, Exotel, and Finesse. The summit was supported by Infoblox, HTP, BITS Secure, SecureNet; RNS Technology Services, and MetaO.

COVER STORY
26 DECEMBER 2022 MEA

EVENT SNAPSHOT DAY 1

Date of the event: 23 November 2022

Venue: The Grand Fourwings Convention Hotel, Bangkok

Number of attendees

Workshop on Cybersecurity

Workshop on CIO – CEO Journey

Destiny is calling- CIOs are built to be the 21st Century CEOs

l Henry S antos, Serial Entrepreneur, COO, Board Member, Global CIO

SPEAKERS

Ronak Samantaray Co-Founder and CEO, Global CIO Forum l Darren Shaffer, a former Military Board Member and CTO Cybersecurity Go ‘Phishing’ l Patrick Doliny, Retired US Marine Officer and a career CIO, CISO Charbel Zreiby Channel Presales Director META, Dell Technologies Dr Corrie J Block Author and Speaker Uday Birajda CEO and Co-Founder, Automation Edge Binzaid Aliar Global Sales Head, Exotel Dr Ektaa Sibal International Meditation Guru Dinesh Varadharajan Chief Product Officer, Kissflow Samer Semaan Channel and Alliances Manager – Middle East, Pure Storage Rajesh Samantaray Co-founder, CEO, and Chairman, OPX Technologies
230+
COVER STORY

Launch of CaaS

The 2022 edition of the World CIO200 Summit began early in the day with the session on Moving towards Self Awareness, Acceptance, and Agility conducted by Dr Ektaa Sibal, Global Wellness Ambassador, Global CIO Forum. Later, she also shared insight into how technology and business leaders can redefine themselves using high-power habits. Dr Sibal stressed the importance of wellness and understanding the mind.

Kicking off the opening session and welcoming the participants Ronak Samantaray, Co-Founder and CEO of Global CIO Forum said: “The event is not only a celebration of the IT champions and pathbreakers globally, but it is also an amalgamation of a year-round hive of activities held under the umbrella of the summit.”

The conference commenced with the launch of CaaS or the CIO as a Service, a global platform designed to serve as a one-stop-shop and a go-toplatform for meeting all ICT needs of a customer. The global platform was launched by Venkatesh Mahadevan, CIO of Dubai Investment. The others to join the launch included Basil Ayass, Sales Leader, Google; Pratap Pat Joshi, Global CIO Manufacturing Forum; Manoj Saxena, Chairman, RosettaNet Singapore GS1 Digital standards; Patrick Doliny, Retired US Marine Officer and Career CIO, CISO; Mohammed Mahnashi, Digital Transformation Advisor, Saudi Electronic University; Darren Shaffer, former Military Board Member and CTO.

The Technology Keynote was presented by Charbel Zreiby, Channel Presales Director META, Dell Technologies who informed the participants about the emerging trends and five areas where the company can help organisations.

Next, UAE’s top business coach, author, and speaker Dr Corrie J Block shared his insights on Evolutionary Psychology and the Metaverse.

Keynote presentations were also made by Uday Birajda, CEO and Co-Founder of Automation Edge who shared his thoughts on whether automation and AI projects can deliver value at a scale.

The other technology keynote speaker included Rajesh Samantaray, Co-founder, CEO, and Chairman of OPX Technologies. He talked about the strategies and steps for leapfrogging toward one’s goals.

COVER STORY
Ronak Samantaray, Co-Founder and CEO, Global CIO Forum. Charbel Zreiby, Channel Presales Director META, Dell Technologies. Rajesh Samantaray, Co-founder, CEO and Chairman, OPX Technologies. Uday Birajda, CEO and Co-Founder of Automation Edge. Dr Corrie J Block shared his insights on Evolutionary Psychology and the Metaverse.
28 DECEMBER 2022 MEA
Dr Ektaa Sibal, Global Wellness Ambassador, Global CIO Forum.

Samer Semaan, the Channel and Alliances Manager, Middle East for Pure Storage shared his views on future data experiences.

The day also saw Dinesh Varadharajan, Chief Product Officer of Kissflow talk about De-risking Digital Transformation.

The highlight of the day’s session also included the workshop on The CIO - CEO Journey. The session was jointly conducted by Henry Santos, Serial Entrepreneur, COO, Board Member Global CIO, and Darren Shaffer, a former Military Caption Board Member, and CTO. The workshop focused on areas where the roles of the CEO and CIO leadership align and differ. The speakers also shared case studies of successful CIO-to-CEO transitions, competency framework for modern effective leaders, and methods to cultivate skills essential for a CIO to become the CEO.

It was followed by a workshop on the essential cyber security aspect by Patrick Doliny, a Retired US Marine Officer and a career CIO, CISO focusing on a multitude of cybersecurity best practices. The fun interactive workshop was designed around the popular game “go fish” or cyber gophishing where participants engage each other on an exciting cyber journey to catch the bad actor and recover.

Forcespot conducted an exclusive boardroom for selected enterprise executives at The World CIO 200 Grand Finale in Bangkok, Thailand. The session titled ‘MOVING TARGET DEFENSE – Building Impregnable Cyber Fortress by Augmenting NGAV, EDR and XDR By Morphisec’ was attended by 15+ senior IT decision makers.

Samer Semaan, Channel and Alliances Manager, Middle East, Pure Storage. Dinesh Varadharajan, Chief Product Officer, Kissflow. Darren Shaffer, Former Military Caption Board Member, and CTO
COVER STORY
Forcespot’s exclusive boardroom meeting with senior IT decision makers at The World CIO 200 Grand Finale in Bangkok, Thailand.
MEA 29 DECEMBER 2022
Patrick Doliny, Retired US Marine Officer; Career CIO, CISO; Keynote Speaker.

HIGHLIGHTS OF THE WORLD

CIO 200 SUMMIT - DAY 1

THE WORLD CIO200 SUMMIT

Highlights of World CIO 200 Summit Finale in Bangkok, day two

This year’s finale concluded by bringing together 230+ enterprise end users and IT executives from 40+ countries to share trends, best practices, health and wellness, and achievements of IT champions.

The sixth edition of the World CIO 200 Summit 2022, the largest congregation of technology experts and champions, concluded today with a mix of strategy and leadership training programmes, wellness workshop, technology, and motivational keynotes, and felicitation of 200 CIOs and industry leaders to recognise their role in accelerating digital transformation through and beyond the pandemic, creating a better future for their businesses and driving growth.

Established in 2017, the World CIO200 Summit is a multi-country CIO felicitation ceremony that recognises the achievements of digital leaders of today who have transformed the IT infrastructure of their organisations driving growth and change. The summit in Bangkok is

the culmination of the year-long face-to-face and virtual celebrations across Africa, Europe, Qatar, UAE, Kuwait, Bahrain, KSA, Oman, Egypt, India, Singapore, and Pakistan editions of the event.

The grand finale of the World CIO 200 Summit in Bangkok was sponsored by CAAS as the strategic partner and StorIT, Automation Edge, Dell Technologies, Mindware, Redington, Logitech, and OPX Technology as platinum partners. It was supported by Veritas, Alteryx, Infinite Blue, and 3i Infotech as gold partners.

The silver partners included Western Digital, Forcespot, Accops, Veeam, NetApp, Logicom, Pure Storage, TechnePlus, Kissflow, DLlink, Exotel, and Finesse. The summit was supported by Infoblox, HTP, BITS Secure, SecureNet; RNS Technology Services, and MetaO.

COVER STORY
32 DECEMBER 2022 MEA

EVENT SNAPSHOT DAY 2

Date of the event: 24 November 2022

Venue: The Grand Fourwings Convention Hotel, Bangkok

230+ 250+

Leadership Transformation Workshop

Martin Roll, Business and brand strategist, CEO mentor, advisor, bestselling author, and keynote speaker

Launch of CaaS global platform

Number of attendees

Global recognition awards

l Uday Birajda, C EO and Co-Founder, Automation Edge

l Venkatesh Mahadevan, CIO of Dubai Investtments

l Henry S antos, Founder and Board Member, OPX America

Cross-Border Panel on Business Continuity and Risk Management in Post pandemic era

Moderator

l Syed Abdul Qader- Executive Director-IT Consulting and Cyber Risk Assurance, PwC Pakistan

Panellists

l Flavio Carvalho, C ISO, Crédit Agricole Consumer Finance

l Indranil Chatterjee, Director – Cyber Security, Technology Consulting with Ernst & Young

l Jeevan B adigari, Director – Information Security and Governance, Damac Properties

l Hass an Nasser Muhi, Operational Risk and Information Security Management CISO and BCP Officer, Kuwait Finance House

SPEAKERS

Sri Anish Founder and Chief Mentor of Sadho Sangha Foundation Francisco Mahfuz keynote speaker and storytelling coach Manoj George Grammy awardwinning violinist and music composer Sax Krishna Chief Growth Officer, 3i Infotech Anushree Dixit Global Head of Content and Strategic Alliances, Global CIO Forum Mohammad Sharif Regional Sales Head of Enterprise Business, Saudi Arabia, Logitech B2B, Logitech Middle East Venkatesh Mahadevan founding member CaaS; CIO at Dubai Investments; Founder Zenpod; Industry thought leader Harish Menon CEO, Accops Dinesh Kunwar Patel Developer of the world’s first most languages speaking womanoid robot Shalu Syed Abdul Qader Executive Director-IT Consulting and Cyber Risk Assurance, PwC Pakistan Navtej Matharu Wanderer in the mountains, The Great Indian Himalayas

The second day for the summit began early in the morning with an invigorating CIO and CISO Yoga and Wellness Session that was conducted by Sri Anish, Founder and Chief Mentor of Sadho Sangha Foundation. The spiritual leader also touched upon the nuances of personal wellness during his keynote later in the day.

Sri Anish is an ex-corporate CEO and a successful entrepreneur. After co-founding ‘People Strong’ an IT-enabled HR business in 2006, he moved to the Himalayas for his deeper spiritual quest. After over a decade of intense spiritual practices, in 2017 he was guided to move back into public life. His session was designed to bring spiritual awakening, value-based clarity, purposefulness, and focus to participating leaders and experts at the summit.

Welcoming the delegates on the day, Anushree Dixit, Global Head of Content and Strategic Alliances, Global CIO Forum highlighted the important role played by the Forum and how the Summit had helped break the country barrier and bring together technology experts from across the world to deliberate on trends, challenges, solutions, and innovative practices. Dixit thanked the delegates and speakers for joining the event and making it a big success.

The session continued on a melodious note through a fireside chat with Manoj George, Grammy award-winning violinist and music composer with Venkatesh Mahadevan.

George who has performed as the conductor, string arranger, solo violinist is the choral arranger of two albums Winds of Samsara and Divine Tides that won the Grammy Award for Best New Age Album in 2015 in 2022, respectively. He is also the first Indian violinist recognised by the National Academy of Recording Arts and Sciences.

COVER STORY
Wellness Session by Sri Anish, Founder and Chief Mentor of Sadho Sangha Foundation. Manoj George, Internationally acclaimed Violinist and Music Composer.
34 DECEMBER 2022 MEA
Anushree Dixit, Global Head of Content and Strategic Alliances, Global CIO Forum.

The day’s technology session began with the keynote by Dinesh Kunwar Patel, a teacher, and developer of the world’s first most-languagespeaking womanoid robot Shalu. Built using recycled material, the robot can speak nine Indian and 38 foreign languages. During the session, delegates were introduced to Shalu.

The delegates went through an amazing storytelling session by Francisco Mahfuz, Keynote Speaker and Storytelling Coach who shared insight on how to ‘storypower’ one’s culture to drive engagement, purpose, and performance.

The technology session included a presentation by Mohammad Sharif, Regional Sales Head of Enterprise Business, Saudi Arabia, Logitech B2B, Logitech Middle East.

This was followed by a deep dive into Edge Computing by Sax Krishna, Chief Growth Officer, 3i Infotech who talked about Orchestrating Digital Transformation @the Edge, and the keynote on sustainable workspace by Harish Menon, CEO, Accops.

Dinesh Kunwar Patel, Developer of World’s First Most languages speaking Womanoid Robot “Shalu”. Francisco Mahfuz, Keynote Speaker & Storytelling Coach. Mohammad Sharif, Regional Sales Head of Enterprise Business, Saudi Arabia, Logitech B2B, Logitech Middle East. Sax Krishna, Chief Growth Officer, 3i Infotech.
COVER STORY MEA 35 DECEMBER 2022
Harish Menon, CEO, Accops.

Cross-Border Panel on Business Continuity and Risk Management in Post pandemic era.

Navtej Matharu, Wanderer in the mountains, The Great Indian Himalayas.

Next, Navtej Matharu, a fitness enthusiast and mountaineer shared his experience and life-changing event that transformed him from a high-flying corporate executive to become a wanderer.

The highlight of the day also included a Cross-Border Panel on Business Continuity and Risk Management in Post pandemic era. The panel discussion was moderated by Syed Abdul Qader- Executive Director-IT Consulting and Cyber Risk Assurance, PwC Pakistan. The key speakers for the session included Flavio Carvalho, CISO, Crédit Agricole Consumer Finance; Indranil Chatterjee, Director – Cyber Security, Technology Consulting with Ernst & Young; Jeevan Badigari, Director – Information Security and Governance, Damac Properties; and Hassan Nasser Muhi, Operational Risk and Information Security Management, CISO and BCP Officer, Kuwait Finance House.

COVER STORY
CAAS Partner Discussion.
36 DECEMBER 2022 MEA

The second day’s proceeding also included the announcement of the partners who joined hands with CaaS, just a day after its launch, which was a testament of the strong relevance that it brings to today’s market. The discussion was led by Venkatesh Mahadevan, CIO at Dubai Investments, along with Henry Santos, Founder and Board Member, OPX America, and Uday Birajda, CEO and Co-Founder, Automation Edge.

Day two of the World CIO 200 Summit grand finale end on a super high note with Martin Roll’s workshop on Leadership in the 21st Century. A strategy expert, leadership advisor, and CEO mentor, Roll is an advisor to the Harvard Board and a Distinguished Fellow of INSEAD.

Exclusive boardroom organised by TechnePlus at The World CIO 200 summit in Thailand. Martin Roll, Business & Brand Strategist | CEO Mentor | Senior Advisor | Keynote Speaker | Bestselling Author. Exclusive boardroom organised by Kissflow at The World CIO 200 summit in Thailand.
COVER STORY MEA 37 DECEMBER 2022

HIGHLIGHTS OF THE WORLD

CIO 200 SUMMIT - DAY 2

THE WORLD CIO200 SUMMIT FINALE

250+ IT executives recognised at World CIO Summit Finale

The summit recognised 250+ CIOs and technology leaders for managing enterprise-wide IT infrastructure adoption, digital transformation, and business growth.

GEC Media Group and Global CIO Forum felicitated

250+ CIOs and technology leaders during the concluding second day of the sixth World CIO 200 Summit at the Grand Fourwings Convention Hotel in Bangkok. The summit revolved around the theme of LeadX or leading through a transformation with a focus on borderless technologies, fearless ambitions, and limitless leadership. It was attended by CIOs and technology experts from across 40 countries.

A fast-evolving global market and ever-changing customer needs

require businesses to quickly adapt and transform themselves. However, with digital becoming the way of doing business, enterprises need dynamic technology leaders to lead the change.

The World CIO 200 Summit also serves as a multi-country felicitation platform to recognise the achievements of digital leaders and the hardest taskmasters who have brought transformative changes in the IT infrastructure of their organisations. Overall, awards were presented to technology leaders from UAE, India, Singapore, Saudi Arabia, Thailand, Bahrain, the USA, Egypt, and Pakistan.

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The award ceremony began with the presentation of the World CIO 200 Awards to recognise the achievements of CIOs and technology leaders driving enterprise-wide IT infrastructure adoption to drive change and growth.

The Hall of Fame

In line with GEC Media Group’s 10th-celebrations, the summit also felicitated technology leaders with more than three decades of active career, having stood the test of time and emerged as role models for the industry. The Hall of Fame awards were presented to 14 legends of the CIO World for leading their organisations through their technology and digital transformation journey.

DX Inspire Awards

Digital transformation does not necessarily mean the technological transformation that an organisation embarks upon. It includes much more effort at the departmental and organisational levels, with all stakeholders working towards a single goal by unifying people and processes.

The concluding day saw the presentation of the DX Inspire 2022 Awards to 10 projects that redefined digital transformation to its core. Awards were also presented to three path-breaking IT solution providers for transforming customer experience with their cutting-edge solutions.

Middle East CISO Conclave Awards

As a curtain raiser to the GCC Security Symposium and CISO Awards

Roadshow in 2023, twenty-five CISOs and security heads from the GCC region were presented with the Middle East CISO Conclave Awards for their vision, approach, and tenacity to execute security projects despite challenges.

Concluding the event, Richa S, Group Sales Head, GEC Media Group congratulated the awardee technology leaders for their achievements and leading technology initiatives that have set an example for others to follow. She also thanked all participants and speakers for supporting the summit and making it a grand success.

Established in 2017, the World CIO200 Summit is a multi-country CIO felicitation ceremony that recognises the achievements of digital leaders of today who have transformed the IT infrastructure of their organisations driving growth and change. The summit in Bangkok is the culmination of the year-long face-to-face and virtual celebrations across Africa, Europe, Qatar, UAE, Kuwait, Bahrain, KSA, Oman, Egypt, India, Singapore, and Pakistan editions of the event.

The grand finale of the World CIO 200 Summit in Bangkok was sponsored by CAAS as the strategic partner and StorIT, Automation Edge, Dell Technologies, Mindware, Redington, Logitech, and OPX Technology as platinum partners. It was supported by Veritas, Alteryx, Infinite Blue, and 3i Infotech as gold partners.

The silver partners included Western Digital, Forcespot, Accops, Veeam, NetApp, Logicom, Pure Storage, TechnePlus, Kissflow, DLink, Exotel, and Finesse. The summit was supported by Infoblox, HTP, BITS Secure, SecureNet; RNS Technology Services, and MetaO.

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Recognition Awards winners Global 200

ALLAUDDIN FAKIR MOHAMAD, Camlin Fine Sciences; Anand Aggarwal, ACRE; Anand Sinh, Birlasoft; Anish Malhotra (Sri Anish); Ankur Goyal, Canara HSBC; ARAVIND SIRIVELLI,; Avaneesh Kumar VATS, Energy Efficiency Services; Bhaskarrao Sirikonda, The Bharat Co-operative Bank; DINESH KUNWARPATEL, KVS; Dr Amrut Urkude, Shubhlaksmi Polyesters; GAJENDRA PATIL, Emerson Electric Company; Ganesh Josh, Nilons Enterprise; Girish Kulkarni, Sardar Vallabhabhai Patel Inst of Medical Sciences & Research; Indranil Chatterjee, Ernst & Young Global Consulting Services; Jagannath Sahoo, ACT Fibernet; Kiran Neve, Hitachi Astemo Brake Systems; LAKSHMANA VADAGA, Adlabas Film; Lopa Mudra Basu, ANSR; Navin Nathan, Aditya Birla Group; Navtej Matharu, Wanderer in the mountains; Nikhil Kumar Nigam, Amity University; Nitin Patil, Brembo Brake; PANISH JAVAGAL, Hinduja Global Solutions; Prabhakar Ramakrishnan, TNQ Technologies; Prashant Kurhade, Maven Tech Services; Prashant Thakkar, LIC Mutual fund; Pratap Patjosh, Yotta Infrastructure Solutions; Prince Joseph, CIO; Rahul Shinde, Coca Cola Beverages Vietnam; Rajesh Kulkarni, Piaggio Vehicles; Rajesh Tiwaska, Mahindra and Mahindra; Ramkumar Mohan, Air Works Group; RAVISHANKAR RAMAKRISHNAN, Deutsche Bank; Sanjay Singh Gahlo, UBI; Satyanaranyana Kasturi, Ashok Piramal Group; Shashi Shekhar Tripathy, eShipz.com; Srihari Upadhya, Fly Dubai; Subodh Kumar Dube, Suzlon Group; Subroto Panda, Anand and Anand; Sunil Pandey, Institute of Technology and Science; Susil Kumar Meher, AIIMS; VIKAS GUPTA, Indian Institute of Technology Kharagpur; Aamir Khan, Al Tayer; Abdalla Al Ali, DMCC Authority; Aditya Kaushik, Zakher Marine International; Ahmed Al Madani, Horizon Terminals; Ahmed Nabil Mahmoud, Egyptian Banks Company; Aiman Othman, Union Cooperative; Akash Lall, Dubai Holding Entertainment; Alan Brouard, Etihad Rail; Aliasgar Bohari, Zulekha Hospital; Amna Al Dhaheri, Ajman Transport Authority; Anand Krishnan, Emirates Investment Bank; Anindo Banerjee, Eltizam Asset Management Group; Arul Jose, Dubai International Financial Centre Courts; Ayman Medaka, Al Masaood National General Contracting; Badreya AlMehairi, Mashreq; Basil Ayass, Google; Corrie Block; Deepu George Thanikkal, Jotun; Eyad Kashkash, Al Ramz; Fahad Deshmukh, Sobha Realty; Faisil Syed, SEHA Abu Dhabi Services; Farid Farouq, Dubai World Trade Centre; Fayaz Ahamed Badubhai, Al Yousuf Group; Francis Arul, Alshaya Group; Frederik Bisbjerg, Daman National Health Insurance; George Akhras, AMSI; Gigi Mathew Thomas, Ittihad International Investment; Hemanth Shetty, Tips and Toes; Hoda A Alkhzaimi; Hussain Saifuddin, Emrill Services; Jacob Mathew, Government of Abu Dhabi; Jeevan Badigari, Damac Properties; Joseph Aninias, Abu Dhabi University; Karthikeyan Gurusamy, Truebell Group of Companies; Kashif Rana, HSA Group; Madan Mohan, MBG Corporate Service; Manish Bindra, Galadari Brothers Group; Manoj, Ramachandran, Al Babtain Group; Mario Foster, Al Naboodah Group Enterprises; Mohamed Noufel, Royal Continental; Mohamed Taleb, Zayed Bin Sultan Al Nahyan Charitable and Humanitarian Foundation; Mohammad Shahzad, Dubai Community Management; Mohit Duggar, Millennium Place Barsha Heights Hotel and Apartments; Mudasar Mohammed, Ghassan Aboud Group; Muneer Abdurahman, Meridian Group Offerkart & Aanacart E Commerce; Mustafa Osrof, HMH Hotel Group;Mustansir Aziz, Automech Group; Nader Ayoub, Abu Dhabi Health Data Services; Najim Tayib, BHM Capital Financial Services; Nicholas Charnley, Abu Dhabi National Energy Company; Nithin Geo Thomas, Amity Education Middle East; Peter Gesper, Noon.com; Pradeep Nair, Oasis Clinics; Rabih Merhy, Rotana Management Corporation; Rawad Bader, Al Ain University; Riasat Ali, RAK Ports; Sabin Subramannian, Class Hotel Apartments GEMEKAYA HOLDING; Santhosh John Thomas, African Eastern; Santosh Shetty, Liwa Trading Enterprises; Seham ElBehissy, NEOM; Sergio Antelo, Mundocrypto; Shahab ud din, Ittihad International Investment; Shailesh Mani, DBMSC Steel; Sheridan Moodley, Masafi; Shijin Prasad, Cure Medical Centers; Shumon Zaman, Ali & Sons Holding; Stacy Samuel, Raffles The Palm Dubai Accor Hotels; Umesh Moolchandani, Bin Dasmal Group; Venkatesh Mahadevan, Dubai Investments; Vikram Vir Singh, DAMAC Group; Walid Elsahar, RAKEZ; Yousif Odeh, Emirates Driving Institute; Zaheer Kadir Kazi, Ministry of Interior; Zahid, Altaf, Majid Al Futtaim; Shahrin Oli Mohamed, Shell.

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Recognition Awards winners Global 200

ICHWAN PERYANA, Pinjam Modal; Amit, Saxena, Ramco Group Kenya; Adee, Elnakhal, Ali Alghanim & Sons Automotive Company; Husain ALNakkas, National Assembly of Kuwait; Praful Thummar, Jazeera Airways; Izzat Azi, TK Lim Trading; Saiful Bakhtiar Osma, The Ascent Group;

Mohammed BELRHITRI, BANK AL YOUSR; Steve Uma, NSIA Insurance; Dr Salim, Al-Shuaili, MTCIT; Meslum AlKindi, IHG, Oman; MICHEAL SELVA KUMAR KD, Golden Tulip Nizwa;

Awais Ejaz, Allied Bank; Khawaja Tanveer Saleem, United Energy Pakistan;

Syed Abdul Qadir, PwC Pakistan; Syed Ijlal Hussain Jafri, Martin Dow; Waseem Rasheed, The IBL Group; ROGELIO JR UMALI, Goodbank; Winnie Rebancos, Coca Cola Beverages Philippines;

Magdy Ahmed, Doha Cables; Nagireddy Bommareddy, Qatar ceramics; AbdulAziz AlOraij, KABi Holding;

Aijaz Regoo, MIS FORWARD; Hazem Jarrar, King Faisal Foundation; Jayesh Maganlal, Damac Properties;

Mohammed Al Doseri, Tasheel Finance; Mohammed Alshawbani, Saico Insurance; Mohammed Mahnashi, Saudi Electronic University; Mustafa Ali, SABB;

Qasim Nadeem, ABANA Enterprises Group; SAGHIR AHMAD KHAN, SBM SABIC; Samer Marouf, Rakaa; Alan James (Jim) Sarka, Johnson & Johnson MedTech; ARUL JESUVIVEK CHINNAPPAN, JPMorgan Chase & Co; Biren Kundalia, Tokio Marine Asia;

Khalid Nizami, ECOLAB; Krishna Ayagari, Wolters Kluwer; Manoj Saxena, Maxeon Solar Technologies; Osman Ershad Faiz, AMTD Group; Rajesh Nandakumar, Westpac Banking; Ravi Gerald Vishwanath, Kerry; Santosh Ramachandran Nair, Siemens Healthineers; Suk Wah Kwok, International Finance Corporation; Thirumal Raj Chelladurai Nadar, Elite Digital Logistics; Yeng Yeng Juliana Chua, EssilorLuxottica; Flavio Carvalho, Group Crédit Agricole; Francisco Mautone Mahfuz, Storypowers; Amarit Laorakpong, Krungsri; Dominik Golski, WorkVenture; Klinubol Phatchapol, Knorr-Bremse Commercial Vehicle Systems; Kunal Kshirsagar, Marriott International; Marie-Christine Martin, Amadeus; Rajiv Kakar, Thai Union Group; Shijo Joseph, East-West Seed; Virag Thakkar, Allianz Partners;

Shaukat Ali Khan, The Aga Khan University; Ankit Thakkar, Thermo Fisher Scientific;

Derrick Louis, EG America; Krishna Seetharam, CyrusOne; Kundan Kishore, ON SEMICONDUCTOR CORP; Patrick Doliny, Infinite Reality; Sai Katkoori, Thermo Fisher Scientific; Uday Awasthi, Sunbelt Rentals;

Tuan Anh Pham, Becamex IDC Vietnam

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Global 200 Recognition Awards

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Global 200 Recognition Awards

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Global 200 Recognition Awards

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Awards

Abdulaziz AlOraij, Alan Brouard, Alauddin Fakir Mohamad, Ali AlAradi, Dr. Sushil Kumar Meher, Hossam Barakat, Hussain AlNakkas, Manoj Saxena, Mario Foster, Mohammed Mahnashi, Praful Thummar, Pratap Patjoshi, Santosh Ramchandran Nair, Venkatesh Mahadevan.

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Networking Security Transformation, Infoblox Australia; Business Transformation, 3i Infotech; Digital Transformation, Dell Technologies; MedTech Transformation, The Aga Khan University, Shaukat Ali Khan; Digital Transformation, Liberty Mutual, NIRUPAM DAS; IT-OT Transformation, Horizon Terminals, Ahmed Al Madani; Education Digital Transformation, Saudi Electronic University, Mohammed Mahnashi; Security Transformation, Group Crédit Agricole, Flavio Carvalho; ERP Transformation, Qatar ceramics, Nagireddy Bommareddy; Data Transformation, Coca Cola Beverages Vietnam, Rahul Shinde; Logistics Transformation, Egyptair Cargo, Maha Boghdady; Government Services Transformation, MTCIT Oman, Dr Salim Al-Shuaili; Critical Infrastructure Transformation, EESL and Convergence Energy Services, Avneesh Vats.

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Awards

Ahmed Nabil Mahmoud, Egyptian Banks Company; Anand Aggarwal, ACRE; Ankur Goyal, Canara HSBC Life; Awais Ejaz, Allied Bank; Aymen TOUZI, WIFAK BANK; Badreya AlMehairi, Mashreq; Bhaskarrao Sirikonda, The Bharat Co-operative Bank; Flavio Carvalho, Group Crédit Agricole; Hasan Naser Isam Muhi, Kuwait Finance House; Hoda Alkhzaimi, NYU; Indranil Chatterjee, Ernst & Young Global Consulting Services; Jagannath Sahoo, ACT Fibernet; Jeevan Badigari, Damac Properties; Madan Mohan, MBG Corporate Service; Mohammed Al Doseri, Tasheel Finance; Nicholas Charnley, Abu Dhabi National Energy Company; Prabhakar Ramakrishnan, TNQ Technologies; Prashant Thakkar, LIC; Saghir Ahmed Khan, SBM - SABIC; Sergio Antelo, Mundocrypto; Shahab ud din, Ittihad International Investment; Syed Abdul Qadir, AF Ferguson & Co; Virag Thakkar, Allianz Partners; Zaheer Kadir Kazi, Ministry of Interior; Zahid Altaf, Majid Al Futtaim.

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Awards

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Awards

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Finesse to automate key processes using RPA at Imdaad, a facilities management company

Imdaad, the Middle East’s leading integrated facilities management company, has partnered with Finesse, the GCC’s top digital transformation enabler, to automate key processes within the organisation using the ‘Automation Anywhere’ Robotic Process Automation RPA tool. Few key processes have been completely automated using the tool, resulting in significant improvements in process quality, greater efficiencies, and cost reductions.

Imdaad has engaged with Finesse, to help

identify and automate key business processes. With extensive experience in delivering digital transformation across industries, Finesse understands the nuances and the pain-points these companies face, and tailor solutions to meet the needs.

To develop a roadmap for automating processes with RPA, Finesse began by engaging key stakeholders across the organisation, examining key performance indicators, and identifying gaps that needed to be addressed. It was

identified that several key processes required minimal human intervention, and those when automated would be beneficial to the entire organisation.

In partnership with Imdaad stakeholders, Finesse has implemented automation on four key processes across multiple departments using Automation Anywhere, a low-code RPA tool that matches the group’s use-cases perfectly.

With the implementation of the above processes, operational efficiencies have already improved both within the participating departments and the group in general. Several additional processes are being considered for automation and are currently being worked on by stakeholders between Imdaad and Finesse.

to improve the efficiency of its operations. After careful consideration, The Port of Fujairah chose to standardise on Oracle Fusion Cloud Applications.

Under this initiative, Port of Fujairah has implemented Oracle Fusion Cloud Enterprise Resource Planning ERP, Oracle Fusion Cloud Human Capital Management HCM and Oracle Fusion Cloud Supply Chain and Manufacturing SCM. With Oracle Fusion Applications, the Port will be able to take advantage of the cloud to break down organisational silos, standardise processes, and manage financial, HR and supply chain data on a single integrated cloud platform.

Port of Fujairah, the largest port on the eastern seaboard of the UAE and the world’s second largest bunkering hub has implemented Oracle Fusion Cloud Applications Suite for finance, human resources, and supply chain to improve insights, reduce costs, enhance employee

engagement, and streamline its global procurement process.

Running its business on 14-year-old on premises applications, the Port of Fujairah needed to consolidate disparate systems and connect business processes on a single platform

With quarterly update cycles, Oracle Fusion Applications will also give the Port of Fujairah access to continuous innovation, as new features are added every quarter, without downtime or business disruption. This cloud applications implementation with Port of Fujairah has been delivered by Oracle Consulting Services.

(Left to right) Bobby Thomas, Head of Emerging Technologies, Finesse; Samer Dlikan, Chief Technology Officer, Finesse; Soufiane Yaaqoubi, Head of Marketing, Imdaad; Mohamed Elalfy, Director, Information Technology, Imdaad; Marwan Othman, Executive Director, Human Capital and Administration, Imdaad; Sunil Paul. Co-Founder and MD, Finesse; Megha Shastri, AVPSales, Finesse; Eljo J P, Chief Business Officer and Director, Finesse
REAL LIFE MEA 61 DECEMBER 2022
Strategically located Fujairah port implements Oracle Fusion Cloud Applications Suite

Trend Micro predicts ransomware groups will target Linux servers, embedded systems in coming years

Trend Micro predicts that ransomware groups will increasingly target Linux servers and embedded systems over the coming years. The latest Trend Micro 2022 Midyear Roundup

Report recorded a double-digit year-on-year YoY increase in attacks on these systems in H1 2022.

Detection of attacks from ransomware-as-a-

service surged in the first half of 2022. Major players like LockBit and Conti were detected with a 500% YoY increase and nearly doubled the number of detections in six months respectively. The RaaS model has generated significant profits for ransomware developers and their affiliates. According to the data, Trend Micro blocked 63 billion threats in H1 2022, there were 52% more threats in the first half of the year than in the same period in 2021, while government, manufacturing, and healthcare were among the top three sectors targeted with malware.

In the UAE, Trend Micro solutions detected and blocked over 15 million email threats, prevented more than 11 million malicious URL victim attacks, and over 122K URL hosts. In addition, over 10 million malware attacks were identified and stopped.

Dragos finds ransomware most threatening to industrial organisations during 3Q2022

A new report from Dragos, examining threats to industrial systems, found that ransomware continues to be one of the most threatening financial and operational risks to industrial organisations worldwide during the third quarter of 2022.

Dragos observed through publicly disclosed incidents, network telemetry, and dark web posting that out of these 48 groups, only 25 have been active during Q3 of 2022. Dragos is aware of 128 ransomware incidents in the third quarter of 2022 compared to 125 in the previous quarter.

The Lockbit ransomware family account for 33% and 35% respectively of the total ransomware incidents that target industrial organisations and infrastructures in the last two quarters, as the groups added new capabilities in their new Lockbit 3.0 strain.”

The ransomware attacks that Dragos tracked this quarter targeted 40 unique manufacturing subsectors. These manufacturing subsectors break down as follows:

• 14% of victims were in metal products manufacturing 12 incidents.

• 8% were in industrial solutions 7 incidents.

• 7% were in packaging, 6 incidents.

• The Electronics and semiconductor manufacturing sectors and plastic accounted for 6% of attacks each, 5 incidents each.

• Automotive and cosmetics each made up 10% of incidents, 4 incidents each.

In Q4 of 2022, Dragos assesses with high confidence that ransomware will continue to disrupt industrial operations, whether through the integration of OT kill processes into ransomware strains, flattened networks allowing for ransomware to spread into OT environments, or through precautionary shutdowns of OT environments by operators to prevent ransomware from spreading to OT systems. Due to the changes in ransomware groups and the leaking of the Lockbit 3.0 builder, Dragos assesses with moderate confidence that more new ransomware groups will appear in the next quarter, as either new or reformed ones.

REAL LIFE
Abdulrahman Alamri, Senior Adversary Hunter, Dragos.
62 DECEMBER 2022 MEA

Jordan based, ZainTech implements Oracle Exadata Cloud@Customer for in-country cloud hosting

ZainTech, the digital and ICT solutions powerhouse of Zain Group, has selected Oracle Exadata Cloud@Customer to introduce new technology services to create business advantages for its customers across the Middle East.

With Exadata Cloud@Customer, ZainTech will now provide in-country cloud hosting services for an organisation’s Oracle Database across its operating countries, starting with Jordan. This will be a first for the kingdom, and will help

ZainTech customers meet strict data residency and security requirements.

Oracle Exadata Cloud@Customer combines the world’s leading database technology and Exadata, the most powerful database platform, with the simplicity, agility and elasticity of a cloud-based deployment. It runs the same Oracle Exadata Database Service and Oracle Autonomous Database Service operated in the Oracle public cloud but is located in customers’ own data centres and managed by Oracle Cloud experts. This enables a consistent Exadata cloud experience for customers – whether on-premises, or in Oracle Cloud Infrastructure OCI data centres.

ZainTech’s collaboration with Oracle is a strategic initiative as the company prepares to launch Oracle Database hosting services to its customers across the region. ZainTech’s cloud business supports organisations in regulated and non-regulated industries across its footprint in leveraging the power of the cloud to deliver transformational IT outcomes. ZainTech’s cloud business brings customers high-quality cloud capabilities with flexible pricing that helps optimise and reduce their total cost of ownership.

Channel partner Gerab implements Arcserve UDP 9000 to

protect 100 VMs

UAE’s NAFFCO

at

Arcserve, the world’s provider of backup, recovery and immutable storage solutions for unified data resilience against ransomware and disasters, announced that UAE-based NAFFCO – producers and suppliers of top-tier firefighting equipment, fire protection systems, fire alarms, security and safety engineering systems worldwide – has implemented Arcserve UDP 9000 Series Appliances to boost productivity and create seamless application performance.

To modernise its operations and further strengthen its data resilience, NAFFCO needed a new data protection solution that was cost-effective, scalable and flexible with integrated cyber-security features to secure its critical digital assets. Working closely with Arcserve local partner Gerab, the Arcserve Appliances 9360DR and 9096DR were deployed in the organisation’s Dubai and Abu Dhabi offices to protect NAFFCO’s 45 physical servers and 100 virtual machines and streamline the organisation’s IT environment.

A recent study found that the loss of critical data continues to disrupt businesses and remains an issue for organisations. In the research study of experiences and attitudes of IT decision-makers, 76% of respondents reported a severe loss of critical data in their organisation. Of that number, 45% had permanent data loss.

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Yellow.ai serves 222,000 unique users in UAE government services over 13M messages

With countries in the Middle East working to enable broad-scaled digital transformation, government agencies are increasingly gravitating towards the adoption of Conversational AI solutions to redefine the citizen experience. According to data released by Yellow.ai, a leading enterprise-grade Conversational AI platform, the company has served over 222K unique users for its government sector clientele in the region.

Recently mentioned in the Gartner Hype

Cycle for Digital Government Services, 2022, under the chatbot category, the company works with key government departments across the Middle East. The Yellow.ai platform has recorded an exchange of over 13M messages focused on citizen delivery services in the last two quarters, exchanged between its Dynamic AI agents and end-users during over 233K sessions.

For instance, Yellow.ai works with one of the largest government entities in the UAE,

where over 4000 users interact with its Dynamic AI agent in a single day. The AI agent has a 99.7% accuracy rate, delivering a CSAT score of 4.56 out of 5. While text-based messaging channels are the preferred medium for citizen delivery services, the company is also seeing voice-based Conversational AI solutions gain momentum.

The major use-cases, as observed, are for automating customer support, filing documentation related to government entities, booking services, raising complaints, making payments, and locating branches and offices, where the most traction is being witnessed on WhatsApp.

The company’s Dynamic AI agents are handling a myriad of use cases, from assisting over thousands of Bangalore Metro Rail Corp Ltd. commuters with various essential services such as recharging metro smart cards, locating nearby metro stations, and obtaining fare information, to running over 4.2 million informational campaigns for the Government of Maharashtra Department of Women and Child Development around nutrition and the welfare of pregnant and lactating mothers across metros and rural areas alike.

Globally, serving over 2.7M unique users, the company expects to see continued growth and demand in this space in the next few months, with governments across countries aiming to accelerate their digital transformation journeys.

Taiwan AI Labs using Synology to build petabyte-scale data warehouse, massive parallel processing

Faced with complex and diverse challenges, Taiwan AI Labs —Asia’s first non-profit artificial intelligence research organization — opted for Synology’s comprehensive line of storage systems to build the core of its AI training infrastructure.

Working with both the private and public sectors, the research hub has spearheaded cutting-edge research leveraging the power of AI, including the development of automated diagnostics for COVID-19 and the design and implementation of Taiwan’s social distancing app.

With requirements spanning from massive parallel processing during the training phase to high data and service availability when powering the newly developed applications, the Taiwan AI Labs IT team was looking for a versatile solution to efficiently manage the ever-growing data pool generated by its diverse portfolio of projects.

Keeping scalability and reliability requirements in mind, the IT team chose Synology enterprise storage systems to build a powerful object storage cluster, complementing it with all-flash systems for added performance when tackling latency-sensitive workloads.

Running off from the storage provided by Synology systems, the team leverages Kubernetes to streamline the provisioning and management of individual services. To remove single points of failure in critical production environments, Synology High Availability, SHA clusters were employed.

To operate with maximum transparency in an industry where data security is paramount, the organization designed a backup architecture using highly scalable Synology SA series units and Snapshot Replication to create point-in-time copies of shared folders and LUNs, which can be restored quickly in the event of accidental or malicious deletion.

The organization now plans to leverage Hyper Backup and C2 Storage as one of the solutions needed to complete its 3-2-1 backup architecture , adding resiliency to the deployment and further reducing IT management overhead.

REAL LIFE 64 DECEMBER 2022 MEA

UAE enterprises overspending by average 45% on public cloud finds Veritas research

Research commissioned by Veritas Technologies, a leader in multi-cloud data management, has revealed that the vast majority of enterprises are failing to stay within their cloud budgets. In fact, 99% of respondents in the UAE have reported that their organisation has incurred higher costs than originally anticipated when using a public cloud service provider, CSP and are overspending by an average of 45%.

Veritas’ latest report, ‘Securing Your Enterprise in a Multi-Cloud Environment Research’, which surveyed 1,500 technology and IT decision-makers across 12 countries, showed that enterprises clearly see value in the public cloud, as 100% of respondents globally agreed that using CSPs and their tools provided benefits to the organisation, such as flexibility, scalability and mobility.

However, many organisations are planning their cloud budgets without fully understanding what they are ultimately going to need to

pay for. For example, most, 97% of respondents in the UAE believed that the CSP would be responsible for protecting some of their assets in the cloud. This is rarely the case.

This is an important distinction since the research highlighted that data in the cloud is a highly attractive target for cybercriminals. In the UAE, it was reported that 95 of respondents had experienced a ransomware attack on their cloud environments in the last 12 months.

The misunderstanding around the cloud responsibility model means that many companies have not factored in the requirement for third-party data protection and are leaving their critical data vulnerable to these ransomware attacks – and other data-loss incidents.

More than half, 52% of organizations in the UAE have lost data as a result of relying solely on the backup tools built into solutions by their CSPs. And 77% of the same respondents agreed that current offerings from CSPs fall short of

their organization’s security needs.

As a result, it is, perhaps, unsurprising that the research showed that unforeseen data protection needs were the most common source of unexpected cloud costs, with 44% citing backup and recovery as the leading area of overspend.

67% GCC banks using DMARC

protection reject higher than global average finds Proofpoint

Proofpoint, released research which shows majority of GCC banks, 94% have published a DMARC record, Domain-based Message Authentication, Reporting & Conformance, while 67%, 34 of 51 have implemented the strictest and recommended level of DMARC protection, ‘reject’. This shows that the GCC performs better than the global average, with 63% of financial organisations listed under the Fortune Global 500 having published a DMARC record, and only 39%, 47 of 122 implementing the strictest and recommended level of DMARC protection, ‘reject’.

While two thirds of GCC banks have implementing the strictest DMARC levels of protection, one third of the banks may leave their customers vulnerable to email-based

DMARC is an email validation protocol designed to protect domain names from being misused by cybercriminals. It authenticates the sender’s identity before allowing the message to reach its intended designation. ‘Reject’ is the strictest and recommended level of DMARC protection, a setting and policy that blocks fraudulent emails from reaching their intended target.

REAL LIFE
Haifa Ketiti, Senior Systems Engineer, Middle East, Proofpoint.
MEA 65 DECEMBER 2022
Ramzi Itani, Regional Director, Veritas.

Pure Storage offering Portworx Enterprise as a managed services for container developers

Pure Storage announced a new fully managed service for Portworx Enterprise to bring a Kubernetes-ready data plane to every developer that works on containerised applications. With Portworx Enterprise 3.0, the underlying platform for this new fully managed service, DevOps teams can run mission-critical Kubernetes apps in production with elastic scalability and unmatched data availability. Now the full suite of Portworx offerings can be consumed as a fully managed service by users of Amazon EKS, RedHat OpenShift, and any other Kubernetes services.

The fully managed service provides ease of use and faster deployment of Kubernetes data on any cloud or on-premises storage, enabling DevOps and platform teams to operate and scale containerised apps into production in seconds, versus weeks or months. The fully managed service will

offer a no install, easy to use, and easy to manage experience to users with no container expertise required, making Day 0 and Day 2 operations for Kubernetes clusters simple with a few clicks.

In addition, Portworx is introducing a free forever tier of Portworx Backup, the leading Kubernetes backup and data protection service. Platform teams can now get started with the fully managed service of Portworx Backup with no feature restrictions, and protect up to 1TB of data at no cost. Each backup instance can manage hundreds of Kubernetes clusters.

The free, fully managed Portworx Backup can be used indefinitely by any organisation looking for an enterprise-grade data protection service to protect their Kubernetes workloads with a few clicks. Portworx Enterprise 3.0 release and the fully managed service will be available in early 2023.

Delinea announces enhancements to Cipher Suite, File Transfer Protocol of its PAM solution

Delinea, a provider of Privileged Access Management solutions for seamless security, announced new enhancements to the Secure Shell Cipher Suite and Secure File Transfer Protocol tunnelling of Secret Server, its awardwinning PAM solution. Further additions to disaster recovery capabilities help ensure Secrets data and permissions are available even during a disruption.

In 2021, 82% of breaches involved the human element; including the use of stolen credentials, phishing, misuse, or just error, according to the 2022 Verizon Data Breach Investigations Report. By centralising privileged credentials in an encrypted password vault, organisations can significantly reduce human-cantered risk.

Enhancements to the SSH Cipher Suite provide customisation of the ciphers used when making SSH connections for various tasks such as credential discovery, password changes, or heartbeat. Heartbeat provides up-to-the-minute monitoring of passwords and credentials,

and triggers alerts if they are changed outside of the vault or without knowledge.

The new SSH Cipher Suite features allow users to easily set availability and application order for key exchange, MAC address, and encryption algorithms, allowing organisations to tailor ciphers to meet their best practices and increasing the security of the connections made through the vault. Admins can also easily remove old or non-approved ciphers and avoid remediation work should those ciphers be highlighted in a vulnerability scan.

The introduction of a new option for using SFTP tunnelling with Filezilla and WinSCP clients now enables administrators to transfer files to target machines using either client, while credentials remain safely in the vault. This feature increases security when transferring files, as it avoids direct access to privileged credentials and offers admins additional flexibility without disrupting their normal workflow.

Jon Kuhn, SVP of Product Management at Delinea.
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Murli Thirumale, VP and GM, Cloud Native Business Unit, Pure Storage.

Email Authentication Deployment Score from OryxLabs rates email authentication of UAE organisations

OryxLabs, a cybersecurity firm providing Internet-scale platforms for monitoring and protection, has published a report that assigns an Email Authentication Deployment Score at a national level in the UAE for the first time. This rating is based on actual network data that was collected, processed, and analysed to give an accurate, on-the-ground account of the state of email authentication in the country.

The research paper, titled State of the Nation – Email Authentication in the UAE, is based on data drawn from over one million domains utilising the .AE extension. From that set, 134,000 domain names used for email exchanges in the UAE were selected for fur-

ther analysis. The report utilised over 4 million Domain Name System queries with more than 40 evaluation parameters per domain and an analysis of 5 million data points to paint the final picture of email security.

The score is based on the implementation or lack thereof of three fundamental and complementary email security protocols: Sender Policy Framework; Domain Keys Identified Mail; and Domain-based Message Authentication, Reporting, and Conformance. Working together, these protocols help ensure emails purporting to be from an organisation actually come from the organisation and that they have not been tampered with in transit.

The overall absolute EADS score for the UAE is on-par or slightly higher than scores observed worldwide. That said, efforts are required across the board to enhance the state of email protection. A deep dive of the report’s results provides visibility into the actions that need to be taken for an efficient improvement of the situation.

Observations include the fact that while SPF can be easily implemented it remains at a relatively low deployment score. The implementation of DKIM for the UAE is surprisingly high for the oft-overlooked protocol, and DMARC is neglected by most organisations and would be a strong factor of improvement.

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Alibaba’s DAMO Academy releases ModelScope platform with 300+ ready-to-deploy AI models

Alibaba Cloud, the digital technology and intelligence backbone of Alibaba Group, started its annual Apsara Conference by announcing the launch of ModelScope, an open-source Model-as-a-Service platform that comes with hundreds of AI models, including large pre-trained models for global developers and researchers. During its flagship conference, the global leading cloud provider also introduced a range of serverless database products and upgraded its integrated data analytics and intelligent computing platform to help customers further achieve business innovation through cloud technologies.

The ModelScope platform is launched with over 300 ready-to-deploy AI models developed by Alibaba DAMO Academy, Alibaba’s global research initiative, in the past five years. These models cover various fields from computer vision to natural language processing NLP and audio. The platform also includes more than 150 state-of-the-art SOTA models, which are recognised globally as the best in their respective fields for achieving the results in a given task.

Also made available on the platform are Alibaba’s proprietary large pre-trained models such as Tongyi, which is capable of turning text into image with five billion parameters, and OFA One-For-All, a six billion-parameter pretrained model that excels at cross-modal tasks such as image captioning and visual question answering. Independent developers have also

contributed dozens of models to the opensource platform to date.

As an open-source community, ModelScope aims to make developing and running AI models easier and more cost effective. Developers and researchers can simply test the models online for free and get the results of their tests within minutes. They can also develop customised AI application by finetuning existing models, and run the models online backed by Alibaba Cloud, or deploy them on other cloud platforms or in a local setting.

The launch underscores DAMO’s ongoing efforts and commitment to promote transparent and inclusive technology by reducing the threshold for building and running AI models, enabling universities and smaller companies to easily use AI for their research and in their business respectively. The community is expected to grow further with more quality models available on the platform from DAMO, partners from research institutes and thirdparty developers in the near future.

NetApp’s BlueXP now available to manage hybrid multi-cloud for storage, data services

NetApp announced availability of NetApp BlueXP, a unified control plane delivering a simple hybrid multicloud experience for storage and data services across on-premises and cloud environments.

Organisations today have increasingly moved to hybrid multicloud environments to accelerate their digital transformation and drive growth, even in uncertain times. But in managing these environments, companies face daunting challenges and inefficiencies that can impede innovation. With BlueXP, NetApp is leading the way to a more “evolved cloud” to simplify and automate critical operations across on-premises and public clouds in order to help organisations drive business impact and improve customer experience.

NetApp BlueXP allows users to manage their broader hybrid multicloud data estate, including on-premises unified storage and first-party

native storage with the leading public cloud providers. Offering a simple, yet powerful experience driven by AIOps, BlueXP delivers integrated, broad data service capabilities to deploy, automate, discover, manage, protect, govern and optimise data, infrastructure, and the business processes that support them – with the flexible consumption options required in today’s cloud-led environment.

NetApp BlueXP is the preferred method to manage NetApp ONTAP, NetApp’s industryleading data management software, both in the cloud and on-premises. The latest release of ONTAP, announced today, contains over twenty major innovations including a new tamper-proof snapshot feature and integrated AIOps-driven anti-ransomware protection, making ONTAP the leading option for secure data storage.

In addition, an expansion of NetApp’s

innovative unified multi-protocol technology allows simultaneous NAS file and S3 object access to the same data, increasing the flexibility of ONTAP as a repository for massive data lakes used for today’s modern AI, ML pipelines.

Jeff Zhang, President of Alibaba Cloud Intelligence.
PRODUCTS
68 DECEMBER 2022 MEA
George Kurian, Chief Executive Officer, NetApp

Blue Planet offers intelligent automation to CSPs to accelerate 5G, multi-cloud automation

Blue Planet, a division of Ciena, has added new software enhancements to its intelligent automation product portfolio, helping communication service providers accelerate their digital transformation and quickly monetise innovative digital services built on 5G and multi-cloud infrastructure. These enhancements deliver end-to-end observability and control to automate service lifecycle management, improve operational agility and optimise customer experience.

The emergence of 5G standalone, network slicing and multi-access edge computing MEC allows CSPs to monetise their network in new ways by delivering innovative slice-based services and offering true digital experiences. Blue Planet is providing new 5G automation capabilities that include:

An open, productised 5G network slic-

ing solution that incorporates end-to-end orchestration and observability for zero-touch lifecycle management – automating design, activation, assurance, and modification – of slices, including sub-slice management, across the radio access network RAN to the core.

Dynamic inventory for visualising the optimal placement of physical and cloud-native resources as well as the end-to-end 5G service topology to help CSPs plan and deploy their 5G resources quickly and efficiently.

Open cloud-based approaches are critical to increasing scale and agility, as well as enabling elastic connectivity models with cloud providers.

Broad Kubernetes support that enables the intelligent placement and orchestration of cloud-based network functions CNFs and applications in distributed multi-cloud envi-

ronments. As a truly cloud-native platform, Blue Planet can be deployed in any public or private cloud and can be consumed in a software-as-a-service SaaS model.

As a key player in the multi-cloud ecosystem, Blue Planet has recently joined Nephio, a new Linux Foundation open-source project seeded by Google and focused on Kubernetes-based intent-driven automation of network functions and the underlying infrastructure that supports them.

Palo Alto integrates software composition analysis into Prisma Cloud to safely use open-source SW

Open-source software is a critical component of cloud-native applications, allowing developers greater speed and modularity without having to reinvent the wheel each time they code. However, as the Unit 42 Cloud Threat Report, 2H 2021 found, open-source software can often contain known vulnerabilities, which can open organisations up to significant risk.

Palo Alto Networks, the global cybersecurity leader, introduced the industry’s first contextaware software composition analysis solution to help developers safely use open-source software components. The integration of SCA into Prisma Cloud further demonstrates why Palo Alto Networks is the leading provider of cloud-native security.

Traditional SCA solutions are standalone products that can produce a large number of alerts but lack the runtime context to help fix vulnerabilities. With the addition of SCA to the Prisma Cloud platform, developers and security teams can proactively surface and prioritise

known vulnerabilities that impact the application lifecycle i.e., code, build, deploy and run.

Prisma Cloud SCA delivers deep dependency detection and remediation of vulnerabilities in open-source software before applications reach production. It can also help developers prioritise remediation based on software components that are already in use. These capabilities are not possible when SCA solutions are deployed as single point products.

As a complete cloud-native application protection platform CNAPP, Prisma Cloud is contextaware at every stage of the application lifecycle to provide a unified view of risk across organisations’ cloud environments. Where current approaches to cloud security rely on siloed products that provide intermittent visibility without remediation, Prisma Cloud approaches cloud security with a comprehensive, prevention-first framework. With 188% increase in cloud incident response cases over the past three years, this shift in approach has become mandatory.

PRODUCTS
Rick Hamilton, Senior Vice President, Blue Planet
MEA 69 DECEMBER 2022
Ankur Shah, Senior Vice President, Prisma Cloud, Palo Alto Networks.

RUNNING CODE AND INFINITE SCALING THROUGH SUPERCLOUD

Foundations of Supercloud are compute and data services that make running any size application efficient and infinitely scalable without the baggage of cloud.

The Internet was not built for what it has become. The cloud was not designed for what it must become.

That sentence expresses the idea that the Internet, which started as an experiment, has blossomed into something we all need to rely upon for our daily lives and work. And that more is needed than just the Internet as was designed; it needed security and performance and privacy.

By its nature the cloud was a virtualisation of the older real-world infrastructure and not a radical rethink of what computing should look like to meet the demands of Internet-scale businesses. It’s as if steam locomotives were replaced

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JOHN GRAHAM-CUMMING CTO, Cloudflare.

with efficient electric engines but still required a chimney on top and stopped to take on water every two hundred miles.

The cloud replaced the rituals of buying servers and installing operating systems with new and now familiar rituals of choosing regions, and provisioning virtual machines, and keeping code artificially warm.

But along the way glimpses of light are seen through the cloud in the form of lambdas, or edges, or functions, or serverless. All are trying to give a name to a model of cloud computing that promises to make developers highly productive at scaling from one to Internetscale. It is a model that rather than virtualising machines or disks or wrapping things in containers says: write code, we will run it, do not sweat the details like scaling or location.

We are calling that the Supercloud.

The foundations of the Supercloud are compute and data services that make running any size application efficient and infinitely scalable without the baggage of the cloud as it exists today.

Just as programmers did not always want to think in database-sized chunks, they should not have to think about VM- or containersized chunks. It is inefficient and has nothing to do with the actual job of writing code to create a service. It is unnecessary work that distracts from the real value of programming something into existence.

The theory of computing points away from dedicated machines, virtual or real and to code and data that run on the Supercloud handling the details of code execution and data locality automatically and efficiently.

So, whether you write your code by breaking it up into functions or ship large pieces of functionality or entire programs, the foundations of the Supercloud means that your code benefits from its efficiency.

The Supercloud makes scaling easy because no one has to think about how many VMs to provision, no one has to keep hot standby VMs

in case there’s a flood of visitors. Just as MapReduce, which traces its heritage to the lambda calculus scales up and down, so should general purpose computing.

And it’s not just about scaling. In the Supercloud both code and data are mobile and move around the network. Attach data to the code, such as with Durable Objects; hello Actor model and you have a foundation for applications that can scale to any size and move close to users as needed to provide the best performance.

Alternatively, if your data is immovable, we move your code closer to it, no matter how many times you need to access it.

Not only that but working at this level of flexibility means that code enforcing a data privacy or data residence law about where data can be processed or stored can operate at the level of individual users or objects. The same code can behave differently and even be executed in a completely different country based on where its associated data is stored.

A Supercloud has two interesting effects on the cost of running a programme. Firstly, it makes it more economical because you only run what you need. There’s never any need

for committed VMs waiting for work, or idle machines you are paying for just in case. Code either runs or it does not, it scales up and down as needed. You only pay for precisely what you need.

Secondly, it creates a more efficient compute platform which is better for everyone. It forces the compute platform, us to be as efficient as possible. We have to be able to start code quickly for performance and scale up reasons. We need to efficiently use CPUs because no customer is paying us to keep idle CPUs around.

And it is better for the environment because cloud machines run at very high levels of utilisation. This level of efficiency is what allows our platform to scale to 10 million requests.

And this compute platform scales well beyond a machine, or a datacentre, or a country, it scales to the size of the Internet. Software allocates resources automatically across the globe, moving connections, data and processing around for high efficiency and optimal end user experience.

The Supercloud is performant, scalable, available, private, and cost-efficient. Choosing a region for your application, or provisioning virtual machines, or working out how to auto-scale containers, or worrying about cold starts seems ridiculous, hard, anachronistic, a waste of time, rigid and expensive.

There are over a million developers building on the Supercloud.

Each of those developers wants to get code running on one machine and perfect it. It is so much easier to work that way. We just happen to have one machine that scales to the size of the Internet: a global, distributed supercomputer. ë

Code either runs or it does not, it scales up and down as needed
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It forces the compute platform, to be as efficient as possible

ARRIVAL OF THE SUCCESSFUL LOW-CODE DEVELOPERS

UAE businesses, and many of their GCC peers, now operate in an ecosystem of pressures. Customers want the best digital experiences right now, and more tomorrow. Regulators insist on the highest standards of privacy and security. And governments want innovation that will shine on the world stage for all to see. The future, it seems, is made for those that can deliver trusted, quality digital experiences at breakneck speed.

Regional technology leaders faced with this challenge must

deliver against a backdrop of skills gaps. More and more software from a talent pool that does not have the knowledge to deliver it seems like an unrealistic demand. Even if the skills are there to meet some of the demand, the CIO may not have enough coders to meet all of it.

As you read this, the UAE’s National Programme for Coders is in full swing, aiming to attract 100,000 software professionals and plug the country’s IT skills gaps. But the initiative, bold and visionary as it is, will take time to achieve its goals. Meanwhile, businesses have

If we are to achieve diversity amongst developers and help ease the talent crisis, we need to completely break these down so that true inclusion can be achieved.
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JAD KHALIFE Director of Sales Engineering, Middle East and Turkey, Dataiku.

customers to appease, and the burden will fall on the IT department to produce the digital goods. Under normal circumstances, IT would farm at least some of the work out to a contractor, but today that is unnecessary.

Tools now exist to allow non-coders to build solutions without writing much, if any, code. A combination of cumulative industry knowledge and the advent of cloud computing has given us the low-code development platform, LDP, an intuitive work environment made for business-oriented users where point-and-click and drag-and-drop replace hours of syntaxaligned typing and debugging.

Low-code and even no-code tools have been around for a while and are already proving to be effective accelerants for digital transformation. When non-technical staff can code, it opens several avenues of operational enhancement. Non-coders learn new skills and get to perform more challenging tasks. Professional coders, to whom these tasks were humdrum, get to concentrate on more complex problems.

The projects that are undertaken by noncoders have a quicker time to production and a greater success rate because the developer is also the end user, which means requirements do not get lost in translation during laborious requirements-gathering exercises.

Additionally, as more and more people across the organisation get to access and innovate with data, ideation and innovation increase. Low code even works with advanced technologies such as AI. Technology leaders who become aware of the benefits of low code can discard the traditional trade-off between off-the-shelf AI products and pure-build solutions, where they had to choose between empowering business analysts at the risk of losing competitive edge and empowering data scientists at the risk of poor production outcomes.

But today we know a little more about the

upsides and downsides of such choices. We have come to realise that a culture of collaboration, involving people from different parts of the enterprise, is necessary for the success of an AI project. Business analysts, data scientists, IT administrators, and business users all have a role to play in introducing Everyday AI.

For low code to work, especially in an Everyday AI setting, the technology space must be easy to understand for the non-technology professional. IT should engage in a springcleaning venture that eliminates data silos and establishes a unified analytics-ready environment. Next, stakeholders need to have a meeting of minds to uncover the most appropriate internal use cases.

No- and low-code platforms are not just for citizen developers. Professional coders can use them to speed up development of solutions too complex to assign to a non-coder. Each use case can be assigned a developer whose skills are appropriate to the challenge.

Sometimes data science projects will be resource-heavy and citizen developers can work on parts of the solution where it makes sense. This is an immensely effective use of resources and with the right resource strategy, can accelerate development of even the most complex projects. Such tasks include smart data ingestion, data cleaning, and dataset merging.

In some instances, the citizen developer may even have the opportunity to create new machine learning models, apply model assertions to capture and test known use cases, and conduct what-if analyses to interactively test model sensitivity. All of these activities can be significant boosts to job satisfaction for

business users and subsequently to talentretention rates.

Meanwhile data scientists, software developers and other IT roles will have room to innovate, applying their skillsets in more value-adding areas. Low-code tools not only help citizen developers to alleviate the burden on technical staff. Technical staff can use them directly in a number of ways.

For example, LDPs can help data scientists with model maintenance. Visual, collaborative interfaces for data pipelining and preparation, as well as model training and support for MLOps, allow data scientists to scale their models more easily. LDPs can deliver transparency and traceability and reduce the likelihood of failure or disruptions to operations. When it comes to Everyday AI, LDPs deliver the visibility needed to gather clear performance metrics for models and draw a clear line between design and production environments.

Another boon to the data scientist is code reuse. Low- and no-code tools all but eliminate the repetition that would normally plague their daily schedule, especially where code silos obfuscate workflows and tasks are unnecessarily duplicated. LDPs can be repositories and catalogues for code that allow data scientists to see at a glance what tasks have been completed and which are pending.

On the quick march to digital transformation and Everyday AI, low-code and no-code development are indispensable elements of a larger strategy — one in which each skillset, technical and non, is utilised to the fullest. ë

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Non-coders learn new skills and get to perform more challenging tasks

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SOCIALLY SPEAKING

Tenable, the Exposure Management company, announced it has appointed Michelle VonderHaar to chief legal officer and general counsel. VonderHaar brings 30 years of domestic and international legal experience, having held senior roles at several large, high-growth technology companies directing M&A, corporate financing, governance, compliance, litigation, global trade and other legal matters.

VonderHaar most recently served as senior vice president, deputy general counsel and assistant secretary at HP, driving the transformation of the company’s commercial global legal affairs team, expanding from a three-region model to nine geographic markets. Prior to joining HP in 2018, VonderHaar was the senior vice president, general counsel and secretary to the board of directors at Veritas Technologies.

She has also previously held various legal positions in Symantec Corporation. VonderHaar serves on the board of a number of non-profit organizations, including the Silicon Valley Leadership Group Foundation, Urban Libraries Council and Parents Helping Parents.

WebEngage, a full-stack User Engagement and Retention Platform, announced appointment of seasoned tech leader Hetarth Patel as the new Vice President – MENA and Managing Director – UAE. Working closely with the founding team, Hetarth Patel will spearhead WebEngage’s growth aspirations in MENA, a region that is starting to adopt a retention-led approach.

Commit focused on custom software, cloud and IoT solutions, named Nikita Khripunov as the new Regional Sales Director for Cloud Services in North America. The new role was created specifically to support soaring demand for Commit’s ALLINONE Cloud Managed Service offerings.

In the newly created role of Regional Sales Director for Cloud Services, Khripunov will oversee Commit’s growing portfolio of Cloud clients and AWS partner ecosystem. This includes being tasked with expanding Commit’s cloud practice and service offerings, establishing key strategic partnerships, supporting sales and marketing, and identifying new opportunities for growth across North America.

Khripunov has extensive experience supporting sales, marketing and technology solutions teams for some of the world’s leading IoT, cloud and internet service providers. Prior to joining Commit, he managed relationships and expanded partnerships for IQVIA, Verizon, Cintra and JW Electric.

Hetarth brings more than 20 years of experience in the Information Communication Technology industry, where he has led strategy, organization building and global business expansion.

Prior to joining WebEngage, he was heading Strategy and Sales Development for Customer Experience solutions at Oracle for its Eastern Central Europe Middle East and Africa operations. He spent over 10 years at Flytxt BV in a senior leadership role and built and expanded its business to over 50 countries.

Hetarth Patel joins WebEngage from Oracle as Vice President
MENA,Managing
Director UAE Michelle VonderHaar moves from HP to Tenable as Chief Legal Officer and General Counsel
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Nikita Khripunov joins Commit as Regional Sales Director, Cloud Services North America

Ertug

Ertug Ayik is appointed Managing Director of HP business in the Middle East and Africa regions. Ertug joined HP 25 years ago and during his career has held various executive positions covering sales and marketing in company’s computing and printing businesses. In an extremely dynamic, constantly changing, and competitive sector, he has worked on building teams and strategies to embrace technologies both in personal and commercial environments.

After being the General Manager of HP in Turkey, he moved to Dubai in 2015 and most recently successfully lead Print Business in the EEMEA region, Eastern Europe, Middle East and Turkey, Africa. Ertug holds a Bachelor’s degree in Electrical and Electronics Engineering and an MBA from Bosphorus University, Turkey.

Peter Oganesean is appointed Managing Director of HP Middle East. Peter joined HP in 2005 and since then has been working in different leadership roles out of the UAE. Over the last 10 years Peter acted as Managing Director of HP UAE and East Africa and his most recent role was Head of Print for Middle East, KSA and Turkey.

Peter holds a BS in Finance from Academy of Economic Studies of Moldova, he also did an Executive Education program from Stanford University Graduate School of Business in California, US. Both IT veterans are located in Dubai, UAE.

Riverbed promotes Charbel Khneisser to Vice President, Solutions Engineering for EMEA

Riverbed has promoted Charbel Khneisser to the position of Vice President, Solutions Engineering for Europe, Middle East, and Africa. Khneisser who previously served as the company’s Regional Director, Technical Sales for the Middle East, Turkey and Africa region now sees his role expand with a significant focus on strategic planning, cross-functional alignment, best-practice development and sharing, and empowering the company’s regional solution engineering teams.

By working closely with customers and partners, he will look to optimise feedback collection, and guide further product feature enhancements. With Riverbed’s solutions being fundamental to the broader technology ecosystem of the modern, hybrid enterprise, Khneisser will also collaborate closely with the company’s Technology Alliance partners to create tailored solutions that drive the overall value for customers.

Khneisser is a technology industry veteran with over 18 years’ experience, having served half of his tenure in various technical and leadership roles at Riverbed.

Nozomi Networks, announced that Jared Waterman has been appointed Chief Financial Officer for the company. In addition to leading Nozomi Networks’ global finance organization, Waterman will be responsible for support functions including overseeing the finance, legal and IT teams.

Waterman brings a number of years of experience in successfully executing strategic financial growth plans, fundraising and IPOs to his role at Nozomi Networks. As Vice President of Finance for Pandora he scaled Finance from the ground up, taking the company through an IPO and growing revenue to $1.5 billion. As Senior Vice President of Finance at Yext, he helped guide global expansion efforts that grew the company to more than $350 million in annual revenue. Before joining Nozomi Networks, he was Chief Financial Officer at HR tech company Inflection. At Inflection Jared helped guide the company’s go to market expansion, as well as helped drive a successful exit in Q2 2022.

Jared Waterman joins Nozomi Networks as CFO moving from Inflection Ayik elevated to MD, HP Middle East and Africa, Peter Oganesean elevated to MD, HP Middle East
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(Left to right) Ertug Ayik, Managing Director, HP and Peter Oganesean, Managing Director, HP Middle East.
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