UAE banks set up threat intel sharing platform

The UAE Banks Federation has started a cybersecurity sharing programme among its 49 member banks to help prevent crimes perpetrated online against lenders, according to The National newspaper.

The advisory council to the federation’s chief executive approved the plan to start the Cyber Threat Intelligence Initiative 2017 in March. The proposal called for the creation of a cyber-intelligence sharing platform that will help banks to identify and protect themselves from cyber attacks, the report says.

Abdul Aziz Al Ghurair, the chairman of the banking federation, told The National that “providing a robust platform for collection and sharing of cyber-threat intelligence will allow banks to answer the ‘who, what, where, when, why, and how’ questions needed for immediate decisions and actions required.”

He added: “By seamlessly sharing business-critical information with each other, banks will be able to prevent and reduce sensitive data exposure and make better, more informed decisions around risk management and the investment needed for their cyber-security strategies. Such intra-sectoral collaboration will allow the banking industry to become more cyber-resilient, ultimately providing greater transaction security and peace of mind for banking customers in the country.”

The platform will provide banks with ways to share cyber-threats with each other such as when hackers scan for open ports or brute force scan attacks. Ways that are known to bypass security will also be shared as well as known vulnerabilities, the federation said. The move comes amid an increasing number of attacks on financial institutions around the world. Between 2011 and 2013, 46 major financial institutions in the US were targeted through cyber-attacks, preventing hundreds of thousands of customers from accessing their accounts and costing the businesses millions of dollars to upgrade their systems.
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