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Israel’s National Cyber Directorate stopped more than 1,000 attacks in 2022

Illustrative - Israeli soldiers work on laptops as they take part in a cyber security training course, Aug. 28, 2017. (Photo: REUTERS/Amir Cohen)

Last year, Israel’s cyber defense authority stopped more than 1,000 major cyberattacks targeting the country, according to Israel National Cyber Directorate Director-General Gabi Portnoy at the Cybertech Global 2023 conference in Tel Aviv on Tuesday. 

Portnoy told conference attendees that Israel is “subject to cyberattacks like other parts of the world, only in addition to the regular share, we also have Iran to contend with, with its organized, coordinated and aggressive attack on the Israeli cyber space.” 

“The general public is most of the time unaware of the attacks that have been stopped. Our job is to prevent those attacks that, if successful, would result in millions of damages to the economy and the country. Our efforts often happen behind the scenes,” Portnoy said. 

Cyber chiefs from four other Abraham Accords nations attended the Tel Aviv conference, including United Arab Emirates Head of Cyber Security Mohamed al-Kuwaiti; CEO of the National Cyber Security Center in Bahrain, Salman bin Mohammed bin Abdullah al-Khalifa; and Director General of Morocco's cybersecurity unit DGSSI, Brig.-Gen. El Mostafa Rabii.

Under Secretary of Homeland Security for Strategy, Policy and Plans Robert Silvers was also in attendance at the conference.

The conference represents the first time these cyber chiefs have appeared together publicly since announcing the creation of a “Cyber Iron Dome” in December.

The UAE cyber security head said in his remarks that there is a need to focus on “advanced technologies and the use of that technology for the best forward benefit for transparent trust. We must keep [using] opportunities for working together.” 

Rabii praised the opportunities for cooperation between Morocco and Israel made possible by the accords, saying, “the major achievement in 2022 for us in Morocco was the implementation of the law of 2020. Thanks to this law, we now have the tools and the capacity to properly address cyber threats in our culture.” 

Al-Khalifa said that Bahrain has been working with Israel behind the scenes.

“I want to compliment [INCD chief] Gabi [Portnoy] on his achievements. We have been working together behind the scenes – past the stage of trust,” he said. 

The All Israel News Staff is a team of journalists in Israel.

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