Dubai, May 6, 2013: The Dubai Government First Information Security Forum successfully concluded yesterday on May 6th, 2013 at Inter-continental Hotel with attendance from around 80 Dubai government entities. The Forum was organized by the Information Security Committee (ISC), which is tasked with managing information security at Dubai Government, in collaboration with Dubai eGovernment.
The Forum focused on reviewing Dubai Government's Information Security Regulation (ISR), which was recently approved by the ISC in Arabic and English. The ISR seeks to manage government information in line with the Dubai Executive Council Resolution No. 13 for 2012 which tasks it with providing an integrated strategy for the security of information across Dubai Government.
The Forum, which featured a presentation on the ISR details and guidelines for applying it, was held in the presence of H.E. Ahmad Bin Humaidan, Chairman of the Information Security Committee, committee members, IT and information security directors and departmental directors at government departments and entities.
Welcoming the attendees at the inauguration of the Forum, Bin Humaidan said: “Dubai has registered an amazing economic and social growth in the past decade and consolidated its position as a robust emerging economy, thanks to the keen vision of His Highness Sheikh Mohammed Bin Rashid Al Maktoum, Vice President and Prime Minister of the UAE and Ruler of Dubai. Dubai has created strategic initiatives that support the national economy, thanks to the distinguished performance of its government entities, its governance mechanism and its infrastructure, which is compatible with the world's leading practices, leading to improved quality of its services in all sectors. In most cases, Dubai has relied on ICT innovation. It is inevitable that we must deal with such a substantial amount of information as well as managing, updating, storing and transferring it, to ensure its sustainability.”
He added: “The resolution issued by His Highness Sheikh Hamdan Bin Mohammed Bin Rashid Al Maktoum, Dubai Crown Prince and Chairman of the Dubai Executive Council, with respect to Dubai Government's information security is based on a profound understanding and awareness of the emirate's vital requirements and is aimed at devising an integrated strategy from which a unified policy would emerge for protecting the government's information and information systems.”
Bin Humaidan hailed the efforts exerted by the local entities in the area of information security, creating a unified information security system with three main themes: the governance of information security, its operations and ensuring the protection of information at the level of government entities in the emirate so that their security and protection criteria would be standardized and made uniform.
Wesam Lootah, Assistant Director General of Dubai eGovernment, and also ISC member, presented an overview of the ISR where he spoke about risk management, provision of unified measures in government for information security and the need for a unified framework and strategy for securing government information across all entities. Government entities would need to adopt the ISR and provide a timeline showing plans, mechanisms and stages for implementation, thus enabling Dubai eGovernment to fulfill its goals in the area of securing government information.
Mira Sultan Obaid, Information Security Section Manager at DeG, gave an overview of the ISR as well as its purpose and scope. This includes three major domain areas: governance, operations and protection. She emphasized that the ISR would pave the way for an information security culture in all Dubai government entities which now have a framework to evaluate their government information for levels of confidentiality, integrity and availability and identify the responsibilities related to this information.
Finally, Dr. Okan Geray, Strategic Planning Consultant at Dubai eGovernment highlighted the ISR implementation guidelines. He reiterated that the ISR complies with the Dubai Executive Council Resolution No. 13 to establish an appropriate IS Governance at the Dubai Government level. He noted five guidelines required for implementing the ISR: establishing an appropriate IS governance at the government level; facilitation of information and knowledge exchange related to information security; setting a timeline for implementation at government level; and monitoring implementation of such timeline. Geray urged government departments to deliver the ISR implementation plan to the ISC by the end of September 2013. He also urged government entities to conduct self-assessments on information security on a regular basis.