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MULTIPLE VENDORS PUT FIRMS AT RISK, SECUNIA FINDS

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Updated : April 27, 2014 10:00  am,
By Editor
Secunia-Morten R. Stengaard, CTO-re58% of vulnerable programs come from non-Microsoft vendors, finds the Secunia PSI Country Report for Saudi Arabia for Q1 2014
Secunia, the leading provider of IT security solutions that enable businesses and private individuals to manage and control vulnerability threats, recently published the Personal Software Inspector (PSI) Country Report for Saudi Arabia for the first quarter of 2014. The report reveals that the average PC user in Saudi Arabia has 86 programs installed from 29 different vendors and that 5.2% of these are no longer patched by the vendor. With cybercrimes growing in complexity and frequency across the globe, this translates into more vulnerability windows for exploitation by hackers.
According to Secunia’s report, Microsoft programs represent 40% of the overall share of programs installed on Saudi PCs, while the remaining 60% come from third-party vendors. The security of a PC is largely controlled by the number and type of programs installed on it and to what extent these programs are patched. Secunia reveals that 58% of vulnerabilities come from third-party vendors. Also, 17.4% of users have unpatched operating systems such as Windows 7, Windows 8, Windows XP, and Windows Vista. On the average PC, 14.3% of third-party programs are unpatched compared to 3.4% for Microsoft programs.
Morten R. Stengaard, Secunia CTO, said: “A lot of users have PCs that are inadequately patched and therefore easily compromised. As a result, cybercriminals tend to exploit any security gaps to access sensitive information. We are on a mission to secure PCs worldwide and as the Middle East is a booming technology market we want to make users aware of the threats to their PCs, and the solutions available to help secure them. We truly believe the Middle East and in particular Saudi Arabia could benefit greatly from the advantages of vulnerability management to secure their critical data.” Stengaard continued: “Saudi Arabia is the biggest IT market in the region and findings from our report show that the users need education on the necessity of applying security updates to the programs on their PCs.”
Secunia releases quarterly country reports which provide insight into software security focusing on the presence of vulnerable software on private PCs in a number of countries including Saudi Arabia. The reports are based on data from the millions of users of Secunia’s free consumer security software, the PSI. The data includes the average numbers of installed programs, patched and unpatched, on private PCs and information on the 10 most exposed programs, the number of programs installed on PCs, the share of Microsoft and non-Microsoft (third-party) programs and the prevalence of End-of-life programs.
Vulnerabilities are discovered in software programs on a regular basis, and the vendor will usually release a patch for users to apply in the form of a security update. If users do not perform these updates, their PC will be vulnerable to attacks because hackers can use the vulnerability as an entry point. The best way for private users to stay secure is to make sure the software on their PCs is always updated with the latest software security updates. The Secunia PSI Country Report for Saudi Arabia data reflects the state of Secunia PSI users and shows that Secunia PSI users are more secure than other PC users.
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HID Recognized for Its Design Expertise as Bahrain’s ePassport Wins Multiple Prestigious Awards

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HID has recently achieved global recognition for its Bahrain ePassport project, clinching several top honors. These include the distinguished London Design Awards, the High Security Printing Award, and the iF Design Award. This suite of praises reinforces HID’s leadership in security design, showcasing its innovative approach to integrating cutting-edge security features with aesthetic and cultural elements.

Craig Sandness, Senior VP and Managing Director for Citizen Identity at HID, shares, “Our design philosophy is centered around seamlessly weaving security into the fabric of the document’s design. The Bahrain ePassport is a prime example of this approach, where innovation meets artistry. This is not just our success; it’s a shared victory with our Bahraini partners, local artists, and calligraphers. Together, we’ve crafted a document that is as secure as it is symbolic of Bahrain’s rich heritage.”

The Bahrain ePassport, celebrated for its innovative design, marks a milestone in document security by introducing the world’s first document-embedded hashtag, #teambahrain. This feature is more than a nod to digital savviness; it’s a strong symbol of national unity and a testament to HID’s ability to integrate modern digital elements with traditional security measures.

HID’s work on the Bahrain ePassport has been recognized across several categories in the London Design Awards, including Gold awards in Service Design for Government, Cultural, and Best User Experience categories, underscoring the project’s excellence in functionality, cultural sensitivity, and user engagement. The High Security Printing Award for Best New ePassport for EMEA and the iF Design Award in the Publications and Communications category further validate HID’s skill in creating secure, user-centered design.

The collaboration between HID, Bahraini authorities, and local artisans highlights HID’s commitment to incorporating local culture into its security designs. This partnership approach not only enriches the document’s aesthetic appeal but also enhances its acceptance and significance among citizens, demonstrating HID’s leadership in creating identity solutions that respect and celebrate cultural heritage.

“As we celebrate the one-year anniversary of the Bahrain ePassport, we look forward to continuing our journey of innovation,” adds Sandness. “We invite governments and organizations worldwide to join us in this journey of creating secure, innovative solutions that pave the way for the future of identity documentation.”

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Fitness First Marks Mother’s Day with Four Days of Free Access

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As Mother’s Day approaches, Fitness First is proud to honour and celebrate all mothers with a special gift of health and wellness. From 21 to 24 March, Fitness First invites all mums to enjoy complimentary access to its state-of-the-art facilities at any of its UAE-based clubs.

Recognising the invaluable role of mothers in our lives, Fitness First is opening its doors to mothers of all ages and fitness levels, offering them the opportunity to prioritise their well-being and embark on a journey to better health. Whether it’s a rejuvenating yoga session, an invigorating cardio workout, or a strength training class, Fitness First provides a wide range of fitness options tailored to meet the diverse needs and preferences of every mother.

In addition to offering access to top-notch gym facilities and equipment, mums visiting Fitness First during this special period will also have the opportunity to participate in group fitness classes led by certified instructors, and connect with other like-minded individuals in a supportive and motivating environment.

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Visa-free countries for UAE residents looking to book last-minute getaways this spring term break

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As UAE schools gear up for the upcoming spring term break starting from 25 March, residents are planning for their well-deserved getaways, ready to embark on new adventures and explore the world. Global travel marketplace, Skyscanner recommends these visa-free travel destinations for UAE residents this spring term break.

Ayoub El Mamoun, Skyscanner Travel Expert, invites families and adventure seekers alike to explore these captivating visa-free destinations

Seychelles starting from AED 2,711 – “A tropical haven with pristine beaches and lush greenery, Seychelles is perfect for family retreats. Explore Anse Lazio’s white sands or snorkel in vibrant coral reefs for a blissful escape.”

Georgia starting from AED 1,703– “Steeped in rich history, Georgia welcomes UAE residents to explore ancient monasteries, stunning landscapes, and vibrant cities. Georgia is becoming a regular tourist haunt for UAE residents given the sudden influx of Georgia tour packages and the family activities to be experienced.”

Jordan starting from AED 1,752 – “A treasure trove of ancient history and natural wonders, Jordan is a captivating family destination. From the rose-red city of Petra to floating in the mineral-rich waters of the Dead Sea, Jordan promises a timeless family adventure.”

Malaysia starting from AED 1,903 – “A melting pot of cultures and landscapes, Malaysia invites families to explore bustling Kuala Lumpur, beautiful Langkawi beaches, and vibrant neighborhoods in Georgetown. Trek lush rainforests in Taman Negara or dive into the colourful underwater world of the Perhentian Islands. Try Skyscanner’s multi-city search too to explore all that Malaysia has to offer.”

For travellers still deciding on a destination to visit this upcoming break, a Skyscanner ‘Everywhere’ search is one of the easiest ways to be inspired. Ordered by cheapest price, a search to ‘Everywhere’ shows travellers all the destinations available for your desired travel departure.

Skyscanner’s Everywhere search tool reveals return flights to visa-free destinations such as Thailand from AED 1,891, Philippines from AED 1,932, Azerbaijan from AED 1,634 and Malaysia from AED 1,976 round trip.

With the convenience of visa-free travel to various destinations, the options for an unforgettable getaway are endless. So pack your bags, book your tickets, and get ready for a stress-free holiday.

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