What is the UAE IA Regulation? 

The UAE’s Telecommunications Regulatory Authority (TRA) released the Information Assurance (IA) Regulation V1.1 in March 2020, to establish minimum baseline parameters for safeguarding the UAE’s critical information infrastructure for in-scope entities. As a result, implementing entities must achieve and maintain compliance with the IA Regulation.

The goal of the UAE IA Regulatory is to assist institutions within the UAE in following a uniform information security practice, ensuring the highest level of security and cyber compliance. The regulation also ensures consistency among the entities adopting the framework. Compliance with this standard is required of all government agencies as well as any other ‘Critical’ entities, such as organizations that are part of the Critical National Infrastructure (CNI).

What are the requirements for the UAE IA Regulation?

The UAE Information Assurance Regulation is made up of 15 information security areas that are divided into Management and Technological Controls.

Technical Controls are made up of nine control families, whereas Management Controls are made up of six control families.

There are 188 security controls in total among the 15 domains, with 60 falling under Management Controls and 128 falling under Technical Controls. Furthermore, each security control has a priority attached to it, which shifts the weight of the outcome, allowing the focus and effort to be directed toward the most important aspects. 

Most importantly, there are 35 management controls that are classified as “always applicable,” while the remaining controls are dependent on the outcome of a Risk Assessment. 

Why should you comply with the UAE IA Regulation?

The UAE IA Regulation is necessary for all UAE government entities and other TRA-identified vital entities, since it is a key component of the National Cyber Security Strategy and sets the bar for integrating the Sector and National platforms. TRA strongly advises all other UAE entities to follow the rules on a voluntary basis in order to help raise the country’s baseline security standards.

Organizations that adhere to these compliance requirements reap a variety of benefits, including better protection of their information assets and the development of a security-conscious culture that can help them overcome emerging security threats.

How do you achieve compliance?

In-scope enterprises must apply a lifecycle approach to information assurance, according to the UAE Information Assurance Regulation. There are five aspects to this strategy:

  1. Understanding the Information Security requirements of the entity and/or the sector, as well as the need to develop information security policies and objectives.
  1. Carrying out risk assessments, determining appropriate activities for risk management, and adopting controls for providing risk.
  1. Define and operate security measures to manage information security risks in the context of general business risks to the company or sector.
  1. Monitoring and testing of Information Security processes and the degree of performance and effectiveness of controls.
  1. Ensure continuous improvement based on customized goals.

These five procedures can be used to establish a loop that allows organizations to adapt their IA efforts in response to new threats and technology.

Organizations can receive complete visibility into their cyber risk and compliance levels with the Centraleyes platform. It simplifies the process of satisfying compliance by incorporating an integrated UAE IA questionnaire with an easy follow-up mechanism to assist, track and close vulnerable areas.

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