Doha Bank participated in the Fourth conference on Information Security for the financial sector under the theme “Cyber-hacking and its impact on the economy” which was organized by the Qatar Central Bank on November 5th-6th, 2017 at Sheraton Grand Doha Resort & Convention Hotel, Doha.
Dr. R. Seetharaman, Group CEO of Doha Bank gave the keynote speech on 5th Nov 2017 at the event. He gave insight on global and regional economies. He said “According to IMF Oct 2017 Outlook, the global upswing in economic activity is strengthening and the Global growth is projected to rise to 3.6 percent in 2017 and 3.7 percent in 2018 respectively. A stronger rebound in advanced economies in 2017 to 2.2 percent and in 2018 to 2 percent respectively. Emerging and developing economies expected to grow by 4.6 percent in 2017 and 4.9 percent in 2018 respectively. Qatar economy is expected to grow by 3.1 percent in 2018. The global upswing in economic activity is strengthening. Qatar economy is resilient to blockade with various reforms and is expected to perform better in 2018.”
Dr. R. Seetharaman gave insight on technology developments and its impact on cybersecurity. He said “The digital eco system expansion has resulted from developments such as artificial intelligence, block chain, internet of things, Open Banking APIs and even Robotics. However there are Vulnerabilities due to exponential growth in digital ecosystem which highlights the importance of cybersecurity. The WannaCry and Petya attack where the major cyber-attacks this year. Qatar itself is a case study of how cyber hacking can impact economies. Cyber hacking impacts market capitalization and Qatar witnessed the same. Doha stock exchange was down only 5% YTD till 4th June 2017 and fell down by further 7% on 5th June 2017, immediately after the economic blockade and is down by 22% YTD as the blockade persists. Despite this Qatar continues to bring various economic reforms.”
Dr. R. Seetharaman highlighted the reforms brought by Qatar. He said “Qatar Central Bank has brought IT Security Strategy and Technology Risk circulars, which will provide directions for the Banks to build their Strategy while adopting advanced technologies. It also took the initiative for formation of Banking CIRT (Critical incident response team), which will Act as Platform for Sharing of Security Incidents and enable quick response for its members. The State of Qatar has brought cyber-crime prevention laws, data privacy law, monitoring bank websites and alert on probable cyber-attacks in the country.”
Dr. R. Seetharaman gave insight on recent corporate governance developments and how cyber security is critical element of corporate governance. He said “As part of Abenomics, the Japanese government is implementing corporate governance reforms, notably for bringing outside directors to corporate boards. Such reforms can improve the country’s business climate for foreign and domestic investors. As innovation, emerging technologies and cybersecurity become increasingly important in a digital world, boards of directors are asked to have a broad IT perspective in their oversight role. Cybersecurity should be part of strategic technology discussions at the Board level. Boards should understand the potential severity and damage a cyber breach can do and how they can better handle on how to oversee cybersecurity issues. Cyber security risk management should be part of sustainable development agenda. ”