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Cloud to boost, Middle East Cyber Security market

Kaushik Ray

“Channel Partners are the Key Drivers for Growth for India on a Global Stage”, said Kaushik Ray, Co-Founder & COO, WhizHack Technologies in a conversation with the Associate Editor, Channel360MEA on the role of Channel Partners in the Middle east for Indian Cyber Security companies.

Middle East’s dependence on foreign products and expertise for Cyber Security- how can effective channel partners become true game changers for Indian products?

The Middle East’s dependence on foreign products and expertise for Cybersecurity is a challenge that can be addressed through effective channel partners. The Middle East (ME) Cyber Security market is slated to reach USD 44.7 Billion by 2027. The ME countries have always been one of the most favourite targets for cyber attackers due to the presence of lucrative critical infrastructures, such as oil and gas and energy, and its status of a rich as well as the growing economy. Owing to the growing technology adoption by enterprises and institutions in the Middle East, Gulf countries such as the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia (KSA) and the United Arab Emirates (UAE) are increasingly becoming the targets of sophisticated cyberattacks that are aimed at stealing personal, Government and Enterprise data and, in some cases, exposing state secrets. There has been a surge in cyberattacks and hacking activities in the Middle East (ME), as the BFSI sector is increasingly adopting new, technologically advanced processes such as digital and smart solutions. The rising geopolitical tensions across the Middle Eastern region are also fuelling the need for cybersecurity across the Middle Eastern enterprises. Israel and the USA have been traditional large players in the security market, but with emerging geopolitics issues, the whole World is looking at a neutral country like India with established prowess in software development to manage their strategic assets. 

Channel partners, who for years have sold, deployed and managed global products, have an opportunity of leveraging their deep customer relationships in aligning with the right security companies like WhizHack Technologies that provide an entire gamut of Products, Services and Trainings to manage large to small scale complex security challenges across length and breadth of Middle East.

The business outlook for Middle East Channel Partners in 2023

Channel partners are vital for all technology companies, including cybersecurity for widespread market adoption. Cyber security channel partners in the Middle East (ME) are looking for solutions that can not only predict cyberattacks even before they occur but also provide complete visibility, advanced detection, response, and scalability to the customer through software tools, standalone solutions, managed services, vulnerability analysis and consulting, outsourced technology support etc on their AI (Artificial Intelligence) and ML (Machine Learning) driven platforms. Threat Intelligence and Response is expected to hold the largest market size in the Middle East Cybersecurity Market by component in 2021. The Middle East threat intelligence market size is expected to reach USD 2.2 billion by 2026, growing at a CAGR of 18.6% during the forecast period. Additionally, the Identity and Access Management segment is expected to grow at the highest CAGR during the forecast period. The Middle East IAM market size is expected to reach USD 1.8 billion by 2026, growing at a CAGR of 19.4% during the forecast period.

The Managed Security Services segment is expected to hold the largest market size in the Middle East Cybersecurity Market by service type in 2021. The Middle East managed security services market size is expected to reach USD 5.5 billion by 2026, growing at a CAGR of 18.2% during the forecast period.

Indian security specialists like us have ushered in deep technology innovations in specific fields like Defence, Power, Banking, Healthcare and Academic Institutions etc. and are building long term partnerships with channel partners that revolve around knowledge transfer for empowering channel teams at the last mile. This will bring down overall cost of ownership for ME customers and create a high value sustainable ecosystem across ME. Going by the growth projection numbers it is evident that the industry is poised to grow not just by volume but also by the nature of security requirements, we feel this is the right time for us to join hands with Channel partners in the Middle East and usher in this growth together.

What are the existing challenges for channel partners in the Middle East as far as Cyber security is concerned. How can these be mitigated?

There has been a surge in cyberattacks and hacking activities in the Middle East, as the BFSI sector is increasingly adopting new, technologically advanced processes. Advanced Persistent Threats (APTs), zero-day malware, dynamic Trojans, and ransomware, among others, have emerged in the last few years and are posing bigger threats than ever. This is where Indian deep technology companies can make a difference in building differentiated and decentralised security solutions through ‘knowledge-as-a-service’. Security is evolving at a massive scale and new age companies like WhizHack are leveraging their knowledge partners like IITs, Rashtra Raksha University etc. to constantly train and upgrade knowledge of sales and support staff so that they can collaboratively resolve most complex security threats with customers. Whizhack’s ‘Made in India’ threat detection product TRACE and Zero Day cyber-attack prediction and remediation engine Zero-Hack can predict current and future threats on both OT and IT networks across Enterprises, Governments and SMEs at most competitive value. Channel partners who already have existing relationships in the Middle East can now leverage and make a concrete space for Indian cyber security companies in the Middle East. The bigger challenge has always been pricing and value proposition, if Indian products are at par with Global standards, if not better can be successfully deployed in the ME then Channel partners can expect cost effectiveness and better margins on a long term basis.

How can oil and gas and banking organisations leverage channels in a highly competitive market to bring in the best Cyber Security solutions?

The factors such as the increased sophistication of cyberattacks across heavy industries, such as oil and gas, are resulting in financial and reputational losses. The growth of the Middle East Cyber Security market is also driven by the increasing evolution of the cloud deployment mode due to the reduction of infrastructure installation costs and proliferation of digitization across the Middle East. However, the higher cost of innovation and budgetary constraints may restrain the growth of the Middle East cybersecurity market. The lack of competent security professionals to manage challenging environments is also expected to be a major challenge for the growth of the Middle East cybersecurity market. The increasing government initiatives such as Smart Cities, KSA 2030, and Qatar World Cup 2022, rising adoption of cloud and IoT technologies, and growing demand for integrated and robust cybersecurity solutions and services among the Middle Eastern enterprises are expected to open new avenues for the cybersecurity vendors in the Middle East market.

India, and Indians, historically has been a source of solving large scale IT solutions. Cyber security is the frontier where the country’s technical prowess, geographical proximity and strong relationships with each ME country would further allow them to build strong security ecosystem combining Products, Services and Training for capacity building programs.

The BFSI industry vertical is expected to hold the largest market size in the Middle East Cybersecurity Market by 2021. The Middle East BFSI cybersecurity market size is expected to reach USD 4.2 billion by 2026, growing at a CAGR of 17.1% during the forecast period. Finally, the Cloud Security segment is expected to grow at the highest CAGR during the forecast period, with the Middle East cloud security market size expected to reach USD 1.9 billion by 2026, growing at a CAGR of 19.3% during the forecast period. Again, these numbers constantly indicate more players entering the market and in a competitive market like cyber security companies will have to be cost effective. Indian companies like us can provide a continued value proposition to channel partners and in turn Channel Partners are the Key Drivers for Growth for India on a Global Stage. 

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