UAE is eager to invest in cyber security companies, plausibly to strengthen its cyber capabilities
The United Arab Emirates is trying to lure advanced technology companies away from hubs in Asia and Europe and instead of building offices in UAE.
During the GISEC cyber security forum in Dubai held between 5th to 7th April, the UAE’s Cyber Security Council (CSC) approached several businesses proposing them for taking Emirati investments.
In recent months, the gulf country has taken an interest in French cybersecurity. The agency made an unsuccessful attempt with French-American cyber firm CybelAngel.
The UAE’s Cyber Security Council (CSC) approached the French-American data leak specialist CybelAngel. The CSC proposed that it would like to invest in CybelAngel, which recently opened an office in the capital for local contracts. Other potential investors included semi-public telecommunications company Etisalat and Mubadala, Abu Dhabi’s sovereign fund and a minority shareholder in semi-public AI firm Group 42 (G42). However, CybelAngel as of now has declined the CSC’s proposal.
CyberAngel was founded in 2013 by Erwan Keraudy specializes in data leak protection on the non-indexed content. The firm’s risk management platform uses artificial intelligence to monitor data leaks across the surface web, deep web and dark web, as well as connected storage such as internet of things devices.
In past, also many cyber offensive firms have been funded and their technology was used by Middle Eastern nations. In 2019, a state-owned Investment Corporate of Abu Dhabi had invested in Cyber Spyware Company of Israel’ NSO Group’. Later it was reported that NSO’s Pegasus Spyware was used to spy the activities of journalists, Human Right Activists, and the ex-wife of Dubai’s ruler.
Mubadala Capital, a unit of a $243 bn fund chaired by Sheikh Mohammed bin Zayed al-Nahyan (Abu Dhabi’s Crown Prince), is a top-10 investor in the private equity fund that bought ‘NSO Group’ the maker of Pegasus Spyware software.
The eagerness of UAE to invest in innovative cyber ventures makes it aptly clear that it is trying to add more arsenals to its cyber capabilities.