The Inter Islamic Network on Information Technology (INIT) jointly organized the 7th 5 – Day International Training Workshop on ‘Internet Security: Enhancing Information Exchange Safeguards’ on December 19 – 23, 2017 at Al-Farabi Kazakh National University, Almaty, Republic of Kazakhstan. The Workshop was inaugurated by Prof. Dr. Tlekkabul Ramazanov, Vice Rector for Research and Innovation Affairs, Al-Farabi Kazakh National University (KazNu), on December 19, 2017 at Almaty, Republic of Kazakhstan. The Workshop was the 7th edition of the series and was jointly organized by Inter Islamic Network on Information Technology (INIT), the Islamic Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization (ISESCO); the Commission on Science and Technology for Sustainable Development in the South (COMSATS); and the Al-Farabi Kazakh National University (KazNu).
Prof. Dr. Tlekkabul Ramazanovin his inaugural address, warmly welcomed the foreign experts and participants of the Workshop. He expressed his gratitude for the experts and participants for ensuring their participation in the Workshop. He emphasized the importance of such events for the capacity building of the individuals and institutions. He noted the importance of internet security and the vital role of the experts of internet security in securing the data and other allied information of an institution. He emphasized the need for cooperation between the developing countries to enhance the capability of the human resources in the field of cyber security and termed the instant Workshop a very right step in this direction.
Prof. Dr. Raheel Qamar, President INIT and Rector COMSATS Institution of Information Technology, Islamabad – Pakistan in his message read out on the occasion by Mr. Muhammad Atiq-ur-Rehman, Senior Program Officer, INIT, stated that ever since the advent of modern computing, the information technology in the preceding few decades has advanced at an unprecedented pace. However, he stated that this progress has come at a cost in the shape of cybercrimes. He called for special protocols to be put in place in order to ensure cyber security in governmental and business activities. Prof. Dr. Raheel Qamar stated that INIT is mindful of all necessities for achieving safe data exchange, without breaching the boundaries of relevant legislation. He apprised the Workshop participants about opportunities available under different programs of INT devised for directing and encouraging use of ICTs and associated systems to promote collaboration and cooperation in building human resources and institutional capacity, encouraging dialogue, maintaining databanks, assisting in training, research and development, disseminating information, automating the governmental and business processes in the OIC Member States. He was confident that the knowledge accorded during the workshop will facilitate the promotion and strengthening of initiatives related to internet security and data protection.
Message of the Dr. S.M. Junaid Zaidi, Executive Director COMSATS was delivered by Mr. Farhan Ansari, Senior Assistant Director (Programmes). He stated that field of I.T has seen remarkable evolution over the years and developing countries are rapidly deploying ICTs to increase the pace of economic growth. However, due to weak surveillance capacity, these nations are facing greater challenges in alleviation of the cyber threats altogether. In this hour of need, specific legislations and protocols can mitigate the effects of cyber threats. Cyber security is a transnational issue that requires cooperation at global level, as the cyber-crimes know no jurisdictional or national boundaries. He emphasized that this joint effort by the COMSATS, INIT and ISESCO has reached to this 7th edition of this Workshop making strenuous efforts towards the capacity-building of S&T organizations in their respective member counties. In the end he extended sincere thanks to organizing partners, eminent experts and participants of the Workshop.
The message of the Director General of ISESCO was delivered by Prof. Dr. UlasherTukeyev, Acting Head and Member of the National Academy of Sciences of Republic of Kazakhstan. He conveyed the greetings of the Director General ISESCO and stated the significance of securing the computing devices against cyber threats. He apprised the Workshop participants about the various activities of ISESCO that aim to strengthen and promote knowledge and skills and build capacity of individuals as well as institutions in the area of internet security. He hoped that the workshop will highlight the significance of cyber security, and will impart necessary skills and knowledge to the IT professionals enabling them to reduce the number of cyber-crimes in their respective organizations and countries.
The Workshop was very warmly received and was attended by 40 young researchers, academicians, system administrators and cyber security professionals, belonging to Kazakhstan, Bangladesh, Jordan, Mauritania, Iran, Pakistan and Sudan. Spanned over a period of 5 days, the Workshop was comprised of several technical sessions as well as hands on lab practices. The event provided a forum to the participating researchers and professionals to learn about the latest advancements in the field of Internet security; use the state-of-the-art technologies for protection of network and network accessible resources from different types of software attacks; and working out effective Internet/information security solutions for general public, governmental organizations, and commercial enterprises through rigorous risk analysis and security management approaches.
The Workshop included a number oftopics covered during the technical sessions. These topics mainly included organizational security; cyber security; cloud computing security; risk assessment; digital forensics; ethical hacking; dissecting a cyber-attack; Reconnaissance (Recon); Password Attacks & Social Engineering concepts; covering tracks and hiding; various types of attacks; evolution of Botnet Configurations and DDoS attacks; and concept of kill chain. Practical exercises and trainings on Information Security/Policy/Procedures Writing; Information Assets Identifications & Valuation; Gap Analysis; Statement of Applicability; Risk Assessment & Treatment; Auditing and Certification Process; using Master Boot Record- MBR/VBR/Partition Tables, as well as using Master File Tables – MFT (Scenarios/ Experimentation); Wireless Hacking and Countermeasures; and Incident Handling related to Malware Attack Scenario, e-mail Scenario, and Network/Web Attack Scenario.
A closing ceremony was held on the 5th day of the Workshop and certificates were awarded to the Workshop participants. The participants expressed their full satisfaction to the content and content delivery of the Workshop and thanked the Workshop organizers and Resource Persons for the making it a success.
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