Why Middle East countries are looking up to Indian Cyber players for their Cyber operations?
Over time Indian Cyber actors have made a space for themselves in the Asian markets, especially when it comes to serving State led Cyber operations. These players have initially established a domestic model and then strategically aimed at expanding operations in regions like the Middle East. Moreover, India as a key Asian economy has also been associating with its regional counterparts to establish healthy bilateral and multilateral ties, giving a conducive environment for the private players to establish business opportunities abroad.
Recently, the Indian Army and Saudi Arabia are exploring new areas of assistance which include Intel sharing & counter-terrorism. On 16th Feb 2022, General Fahd Bin Abdullah Mohammed Al-Mutair (Commander of Royal Saudi Land Forces Lieutenant) visited India as a testament to the growing bilateral defense ties between New Delhi and Riyadh. The bilateral agreement includes Intelligence Sharing, Counter-Terrorism, Artificial Intelligence, and Cyber Security.
In the past, key Indian actors like Phronesis Group was hired by UAE for its inclusive intelligence and due diligence. Though, the company began its operations as an intelligence gathering, it soon extended its services such as providing online reputation management for the country. Agalya is another name that surfaces for providing surveillance services in Middle East.
Given the flourishing Geo-political environment, various new Cyber players are trying their luck, especially in the volatile Middle East region, offering both offensive and defensive Cyber capabilities.
Recently, among defensive actors Indian Cyber security firm, Instasafe is also looking to expand its occurrence in the Middle East and Europe. According to Sandip Kumar Panda (CEO of Instasafe Technology), they are collaborating to enlarge their technology corporations outside the borders.
And on the offensive side, Indian actors like Secfence technologies led by Atul Agarwal, Cleartrail technologies led by Praveen Kankariya and Shoghi communications led Anant Bindal are making their mark in the serving governments in Middle East.
In 2021, Emirati’s publicly owned Cyber Company Digital 14 has set up its Indian firm. The Company is headed by Sanjiv Jain and Deep data, both of whom formerly worked for Darkmatter, UAE based cyber Intelligence firm.
Such confidence on Indian companies is also due to the fact that many Indians having cyber capabilities who were initially hired by Middle East governmental projects later opened their own firms in both Middle East and India. Though such a trend is primary leading to brain drain for countries like India.