For the 4th year in a row, W7Worldwide is the communications partner of one of the biggest and leading cyber security conferences, the Middle East and North Africa Information Security Conference.

W7Worldwide’s success in the cybersecurity market, having led several communications strategies for different companies in the field, has reflected on the leading conference by building a powerful platform and establishing a sustainable bridge with the target audience.

Cyberattacks are on the rise 

With the GCC region becoming a centre point for cyberattacks because of its strategic and economic significance, with government, education, and BFSI industries as the most targeted verticals by cyber attackers.  The Gulf Cooperation Council (GCC) countries have recorded 3,067 email, URL, and file threats related to the Covid-19 coronavirus in Q1 2020.  Global organizations have seen a 148% spike in ransomware attacks, with the finance and healthcare industry most heavily targeted.

“Organizations need to consider how their new business models and remote working in response to Covid-19 may have increased the risk of a cyberattack.  Cyber security is evolving from cyber resistance to cyber resilience, with a focus on taking preventative measures against the increased risks and addressing them proactively to limit any potential financial and reputational losses from a potential attack,” explains Samir Omar, CEO of VirtuPort. “Not only can a cyberattack affect critical business functions, but it also brings the added external pressure of attention from the media, the public, customers, and regulators.  Therefore we worked with our communications partners W7Worldwide to provide a crisis communications tool companies and organizations can deploy as part of their cyber resilience planning.”

Communications Expertise

W7Worldwide employed its deep expertise, given the severity of the topic, to develop the ‘7 Steps to Crisis Communications under a Cyberattack’ Guide has been produced as a timely tool for companies to tackle the communications challenges of a cyberattack.  It advises organizations to take key steps in preparation and during an incident, from reviewing current crisis communications plans to simulation practice, employee threat education programmes, controlling the narrative when under pressure, and how to move on undamaged from an attack. (Click Here to Read Full Report).

“A cyberattack itself does not need to destroy your corporate reputation; it is how you prepare for and handle such a crisis that will determine lasting trust in your brand.  Consumers, investors, partners, employees, and shareholders are holding organizations much more accountable for their actions,” said Abdulrahman Inayat, Co-Founder of W7Worldwide.

Dealing with a cyberattack on top of the Covid-19 crisis is a major challenge for any organization to cope with and requires careful coordination between the incident response team and a range of internal and external stakeholders.  Organizations should develop their crisis communications plan as a pre-emptive measure now and as part of their broader cyber resilience planning with clear messaging and lines of communication to enable sound decision-making during the high-pressure environment surrounding a cyberattack.

“Managing the current increased cyber risk is crucial and means continually assessing your organization’s cyber resilience.  As part of that it is vital to mitigate the impact on brand reputation with a solid crisis communications plan in place and a proactive communications approach.” Inayat added.

Increased Awareness

VirtuPort is a leading provider of cybersecurity services in the MENA region across all verticals, helping clients protect themselves from the growing number of cyber threats. The upcoming Middle East and North Africa Information Security Conference (MENAISC), held virtually this year from the 5th to the 6th of October, will shine a spotlight on the cybersecurity sector in the MENA region with industry leaders discussing the impact of Covid-19.

The ‘7 Steps to Crisis Communications under a Cyberattack’ Guide brings together VirtuPort’s and W7Worldwide’s combined cybersecurity and crisis communications expertise to help businesses and organizations prepare for and respond proactively to the increased risks of cyberattacks in Covid-19.