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IoT Adoption and Cyber Awareness in Saudi Arabia Proposal

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Updated: Jun 6th, 2022

Being a highly influential and developed region, Saudi Arabia is primarily concerned with cybersecurity as it makes investments into technological boosts and advancements. The vested interest in cybersecurity capacity expansion is closely related to the country’s general economic development, specifically, now, when Saudi Arabia goes towards artificial intelligence technologies and the Internet of Things (IoT) (Johnson et al., 2020; Ani et al., 2016). Undoubtedly, these modern technologies and devices will be efficient, but there is a severe threat to cyber-resilience. As the implementation of these cyber technologies penetrates the economic sector, there is a need to understand potential vulnerability for businesses to be attacked through the Internet and other networks. Therefore, there are still some shortcomings of cyber awareness and questions that remain unanswered.

Primarily, the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia significantly suffers from daily cyberattacks despite its elaborate protective technologies. As a result of these occurrences, governmental, and private sectors’ critical emergent services are disrupted. They also damage the country’s economic, social, and political stability (Wilner, 2018). In other words, it is termed ‘hacktivism,’ which presupposes the disruption of services (Aleisa et al., 2020). Therefore, these attacks result in information sneaking for espionage intentions and the state’s agenda can be revealed worldwide.

Moreover, as a crucial shortcoming of cybersecurity, they cause monetary and trust-based losses. Nearly 56% of Arabian countries had tremendous financial losses. The fact is that about 160,000 cyber-attacks occur daily (SathishKumar & R. Patel, 2015). In addition to this, about 81% of Saudi Arabian businesses use IoT platforms, which can be easily hacked, thus, private information, including fingerprints, addresses, or other personal data can be stolen (Aleisa et al., 2020). As a consequence, the questions concerning increasing cyber awareness and protecting governmental and private businesses arise.

As a result of the attacks, initiatives that would reduce the level of cybercrimes should be applied. Firstly, there is a need to upskill IoT, cyber, and data specialists who would be able to resist hackers immediately (Shoemaker et al., 2017). However, there is a need for the government to invest in this initiative to train the professionals. The qualified professionals will be able to devise new algorithms and measures that would help them prepare preemptive measures when there is a cyber-threat. Secondly, it is necessary to assess the security system and its status of a device before its implementation (Al-Janabi & Al-Shourbaji, 2016; Henrie, 2015; Kuppuswamy et al., 2017). People pay more attention to the devices having cybersecurity certificates (Latifi, 2020). Thirdly, conducting security audits and providing professionals with up-to-date threat intelligence systems can reduce the number of cyberattacks.

Furthermore, the Kingdom needs to address the social issues that would help to reduce the number of the attacks. To begin with, it would be efficient to safeguard children in digital space to expand the cyber awareness capacity. The growing number of cyberattacks proves that children are mainly exposed to such attacks; therefore, protective programs and policies should be implemented (Al-Janabi & Al-Shourbaji, 2016). Another initiative is related to women employment to the cybersecurity systems. Such a method will also help avoid cybercrimes as women are quite attentive, and it will let them pursue leadership goals (Shoemaker et al., 2017). All of the above-listed measures and techniques can be applied to cybersecurity and awareness expansion as they have both theoretical and practical implementation.


Aleisa, N., Renaud, K., & Bongiovanni, I. (2020). The privacy paradox applies to IoT devices too: A Saudi Arabian study. Computers & Security, 1-40.

Al-Janabi, S., & Al-Shourbaji, I. (2016). A study of cyber security awareness in educational environment in the Middle East. Journal of Information & Knowledge Management, 15(1), 1-30.

Ani, U., He, H., & Tiwari, A. (2016). Review of cybersecurity issues in industrial critical infrastructure: manufacturing in perspective. Journal of Cyber Security Technology, 1(1), 32–74.

Henrie, M. (2015). Cyber security risk management in the SCADA critical infrastructure environment. Engineering Management Journal, 25(2), 38–45.

Johnson, S. D., Blythe, J. M., Manning, M., & Wong, G. T. W. (2020). The impact of IoT security labelling on consumer product choice and willingness to pay. PLOS ONE, 15(1), 1-21.

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SathishKumar, J., & R. Patel, D. (2015). A survey on internet of things: security and privacy issues. International Journal of Computer Applications, 90(11), 20–26.

Shoemaker, D., Davidson, & D., Conklin, A. (2017). Toward a discipline of cyber security: some parallels with the development of software engineering education. EDPACS. 56(5–6), 12-20.

Wilner, A. S. (2018). Cybersecurity and its discontents: Artificial intelligence, the Internet of Things, and digital misinformation. International Journal: Canada’s Journal of Global Policy Analysis, 73(2), 308–316.

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