NET participated in the third e-government forum: management and information security held from November 15 to 17, 2015, at the Arraya Hall in the Marriot Courtyard under the patronage of the Head of the Council of Ministers, Sheikh Jabir Al-Mubarak. The forum reflected the country’s enthusiasm in promoting and supporting e-government and raising the level of services provided by all government agencies to citizens, residents, and visitors to Kuwait. The forum was inaugurated by the Minister of State for Cabinet Affairs, Sheikh Mohammad Abdullah Al-Sabah, on behalf of the Head of the Council of Ministers.
KNET CEO Mr. Abdulla Al-Ajmi spoke about the role and involvement of KNET in the management and security of information. KNET Application Development Manager, Mr. Khaled BuAbbas, made a presentation on KNET services and the development of electronic payment in private and government sectors, pointing out that KNET connects about 45000 POS devices in Kuwait, as well as 11 local banks, 1500 ATMs, and 7 foreign banks operational in Kuwait.
He said that about 30 government entities in Kuwait pay fees for their services through KNET and that nearly 1.4 million payment processes take place daily across the network. The most important characteristic of KNET is the integrity of the network and that KNET always seeks to maintain the quality of service provided to its customers to retain their confidence. He pointed out that information and card security is very important for the company, therefore internal security controls are applied, as well as controls with the banks, whether in Kuwait or in the GCC.
Bubbas related that organizations wanting to link to KNET had to conform to specific system requirements and fulfill requisite security tests prior to joining the network.
The forum made 9 recommendations, all aimed at the development of e-government services through a variety of refined means, as follows:
- Timely development of an integrated plan with the participation of all government agencies for the development of e-government services, to achieve major e-government objectives, taking into account the current situation of each sector.
- To study the effect of modern e-government programs and technological phenomena and how these phenomena may be advantageous in the promotion of government services, especially in technology related to smart cities.
- To study the development of technological aspects of government information centers, infrastructure, human resources, and work procedures in terms of activating the use of new technological requirements.
- Strengthen popular participation in the development of government services through social networks and open channels of dialogue between the administrator and the citizen in order to enhance transparency and lift the level of services to benefit from the immense data analysis.
- To expedite the application of the national framework for governance project information, particularly with regard to the development of government in terms of security services and the privacy of information assets, and consolidation of all government agencies’ standards, and the development of a unified mechanism to test the e-government applications in terms of compatibility with the framework.
- The need to develop a comprehensive strategic plan at the level of all government agencies in terms of backup of information to be provided as well as plans to avoid disaster and ensure continuity of government services according to the approved international standards in this regard.
- Accurate processing into the follow-up of risk-oriented information and capabilities that are constantly evolving and coordinating the efforts of all government agencies to confront and reduce the seriousness of security breaches.
- Advertising campaigns directed at concerned members of the community to raise awareness on the importance of maintaining the security of personal information devices, in addition to the devices used at work, and to provide guidance towards the best ways to accomplish this on a permanent basis.
- Intensification of seminars, conferences, and workshops for the management and security of information, in coordination with international field specialists, so as to take advantage of their experience and technologies.