On Sunday 30 December 2012, the Organization of Islamic Cooperation- Computer Emergency Response Team' Annual Conference was hosted at Al Bustan Palace Hotel, in Muscat by the Information Technology Authority (ITA) represented by the National Computer Emergency Readiness Team (OCERT). The one-day conference was opened under the patronage of HE Dr. Abdullah bin Mohammed Al Saidi, Minister of Legal Affairs, with the presence of HE Ali bin Masoud Al Sunaidy, Chairman of the Board of ITA, Dr. Salim Sultan Al Ruzaiqi, CEO of ITA, and the invited delegates from more than 55 countries.
The ever-growing cyber revolution has called the OIC-CERT to shed light on "cyber security against emerging threats" as the theme of the Annual Conference, calling regional alliances for possible partnership and collaboration pertaining cyber security. Dr. Salim Al Ruzaiqi, CEO of ITA, welcomed the Chief Guest of this event and the attendees emphasizing the importance of hosting the OIC-CERT Annual Conference and General Meeting "promoting the regional cooperation in the field of electronic security would contribute to enhancing the efforts and initiatives undertaken by the member countries in order to secure institutions' infrastructure and industry sector in light of the challenges and IT security risks that threaten the economies and development plans and programs in the world."
Gathering experts from more than 55 countries, the conference offered the perfect forum for those participating to share their experiences, through presenting the best practices on cyber security in their countries. In this regard, General Mohammed Azumi bin Mohammed, Chair of OIC-CERT and Chairman of Cyber Security Malaysia, stated" It is critical to develop comprehensive cyber security policies and framework which outline some degree of interdisciplinary cooperation and response. Our objective is always seeking solutions on issues in strengthening cyber security and creating a trusted and resilient cyber environment." He also added "Security researchers found that the best defense on the growing cyber threats is by cooperative education and awareness, best-of-breed tools and robust policies that nurture collaborative effort between the industry, academia and government."
Designating the Sultanate to serve as the regional cyber security centre for the Arab region positions the Sultanate as the key cyber security hub in the Arab region and hosting OIC-CERT Annual Conference at this time strengthens the role OCERT plays in the region. Eng. Badar Al Salehi, Director of OCERT, comments on hosting the conference in light of the Regional Cyber Security Centre for Arab Countries saying "the conference will maximize the benefit to the rest of the OIC countries to learn from what the OCERT has gain over the last years which has distinguished it to be a regional cyber security centre. This conference ensures OCERT vision and mission."
Four different unique sessions showcased experiences and solutions implemented by the OIC-CERT member countries such as Qatar, Turkey, Iran, and Morocco. The Conference continued throughout the day focusing on: Shaping the Future of Information Security, the new breed of cyber threats – snags, optimizing human capabilities in managing the impact of the new breed of cyber security threats, and riding the waves of emerging threats with regional alliances.