MOTC’s Q-CERT Organizes 4th National Cybersecurity Drill

Monday, December 12, 2016
MOTC’s Q-CERT Organizes 4th National Cybersecurity Drill

The Ministry of Transport and Communications (MOTC) has launched the fourth National Cybersecurity Drill, ‘Star-4’, on Monday, December 12 as part of the objectives of Qatar’s National Cybersecurity Strategy.

HE Minister of Transport and Communications Jassim Saif Ahmed Al Sulaiti opened the event, which runs until Thursday 15 December.

Under the theme ‘Managing Supply Risk in the Supply Chain’, the drill complements the series of national exercises initiated by MOTC’s Qatar Computer Emergency Response Team (Q-CERT) to raise the efficiency and readiness of government and corporate institutions against cyberattacks.

“Star-4 focuses on cybersecurity risks that may be encountered within the ICT supply chain,” said Khalid al-Hashmi, Assistant Undersecretary, Cyber Security Sector at MOTC, during a media briefing held today at the Ministry headquarters.

The technical side of the drills aims to enhance surveillance, monitoring, and reporting by institutions when dealing with cyberattacks, Al-Hashmi added.

He noted that cyber drills are exercises that measure the level of readiness against evolving cyber threats and are conducted on a yearly basis. He also pointed out that the drills increase readiness and collaboration among organizations and provide them with the knowledge and tools to contain any form of cyberattack.

“The number of the drill participants has increased since the launch of the first national cybersecurity drill (‘Star-1’) in 2013. This year, more than 250 people, representing 60 organizations from seven major sectors are participating in Star-4,” said Nora al-Abdullah, Cybersecurity Training and Awareness Section Manager at Q-CERT.

“The cybersecurity drills do not gauge the number of attacks but measure the readiness of Qatar organizations in the face of a cyberattack. The most positive effect of these drills is seeing all these organizations coming together and strengthening Qatar’s cybersecurity ecosystem, and I think that is the essence of having a national cybersecurity drill,” al-Abdullah explained.

Cyber drills in Qatar are coordinated in line with the second objective of the National Cyber Security Strategy: “Respond to, resolve and recover from cyber incidents and attacks through timely information sharing, collaboration and action.”