ENEC shares energy cybersecurity expertise at 1st CyberEnergy Leadership Forum

ABU DHABI, The Emirates Nuclear Energy Corporation (ENEC) hosted the first edition of the CyberEnergy Leadership Forum (CELF) in Abu Dhabi, which brought together more than 117 experts representing a diverse range of government, semi-government and trusted private sector stakeholders, to discuss best practices and approaches used to enhance the cyber resilience of the energy sector in the UAE and globally.


The one-day forum featured a leadership briefing, followed by a technical forum hosted by ENEC and the United States Department of Energy, and engaging discussions on key cyber challenges facing the world with high-level attendees including Mohammed Hamad Al Kuwaiti, Head of Cyber Security for the Government of the UAE, was in attendance and gave opening remarks.


Mohamed Ibrahim Al Hammadi, Managing Director and Chief Executive Officer of ENEC, welcomed the leaders and attendants and led the discussions of the forum, which showcased the UAE’s position as a world leader in innovation and best-in-class technology implementation with key areas covered including cyber event response, organisation-specific initiatives, updates on the UAE cyber security strategy and cyber security assessments.


ENEC, a leading entity that is spearheading cyber security in the UAE’s clean energy sector, upholds the highest international standards for the safe and secure operation of the Barakah Nuclear Energy Plant to ensure abundant volumes of clean electricity are generated 24/7 for the Nation. The Barakah Plant uses one of the most modern and advanced nuclear technologies and is the first fully digitalised nuclear energy plant in the world. As a result, ENEC has taken a 360 degree approach, utilising one of the most advanced cyber systems that is continuously enhanced to remain ahead of the curve in responding to the evolving cybersecurity environment.


The forum falls in line with ENEC’s support of, and alignment with, the UAE’s National Cyber Security Strategy, through engaging with local and international stakeholders to enhance resilience and set new standards of excellence. The nuclear energy industry has some of the most stringent cyber quality, technical and risk management standards in the world and ENEC has been recognised as a global benchmark for new nuclear projects around the globe in terms of safety, security and nuclear project delivery, now adding cybersecurity leadership to its organisation expertise.


Al Kuwaiti said, “The cybersecurity threat landscape has evolved rapidly over the years, as the world becomes increasingly digitalised – resulting from a greater overlap between IT and Operational Technology (OT). The UAE is driving forward with the new National Cybersecurity Strategy, and we commend ENEC’s CyberEnergy Leadership Forum for creating a strong basis for engaging key government and industrial stakeholders to establish a safe and secure energy sector that will see us building a trusted hub as we herald the new digital era.


“We welcome the opportunity to create partnerships, sharing knowledge and experience with trusted international stakeholders to support our efforts in driving cybersecurity in the UAE and internationally.”


Mohamed Ibrahim Al Hammadi, Managing Director and Chief Executive Officer of ENEC, said, “Cybersecurity is a critical focus area in the digital era and today’s Forum has showcased how important it is to continuously evolve cyber strategies that maximise the benefits of advanced technology whilst maintaining safety and security. We work closely with government and private stakeholders, sharing best practices, to further advance the intellectual wealth of the UAE and the wider industry, ensuring we remain well-equipped to mitigate any potential cyber challenges.”


Robert M. Lee, CEO and Co-Founder of Dragos, commented, “The Cybersecurity Energy Leadership Forum represents the essential collaboration that ENEC is driving to support the UAE’s National Cyber Security Strategy. Cybersecurity for industrial control systems (ICS) and operational technology (OT) is more critical than ever in our hyperconnected world, and I am honored to work with the UAE industrial community to protect people and make the industrial community safer from cyber threats while the country’s innovators also pursue digital transformation.”


Throughout the past 10 years, ENEC has committed to upholding its UAE nuclear policy commitments to the highest standards of nuclear safety, quality, transparency and non-proliferation. As a result, the Barakah Plant has received international recognition following robust assessments from the International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA), and the World Association of Nuclear Operators (WANO), and this commitment will remain throughout the lifetime of the UAE Peaceful Nuclear Energy Program.


Cyber security for the Barakah Nuclear Energy Plant is regulated by the Federal Authority for Nuclear Regulation (FANR) which is responsible for reviewing and overseeing the physical protection of nuclear materials and facilities. ENEC’s cyber security systems comply with the highest international standards set by the UAE’s National Electronic Security Authority (NESA).


Source: Emirates News Agency

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