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Mercedes Vazquez

General Manager, ESK Holding, Creator of 50 Women in Cybersecurity, Kuwait

Mercedes Vazquez, a dynamic business and technology executive based in Kuwait for the past eight years and a half, was recognized in June 2023 as Exemplary Woman in Economic Development awardee at the 2023 Global Women In Leadership awards in Dubai, U.A.E. that took place under the patronage of HH Engineer Sheikh Salem Bin Sultan Bin Saqr Al Qasimi, as a recognition of her relentless trajectory as an innovative business and technology executive who creates economic-technology bridges across continents with a solid track record of building revenue streams from scratch, with a passionate for constant innovation and enabling use of responsible for the greater common good. By advancing economic diversification and women’s economic security, she believes global societies can thrive and global GDP can increase.

Mercedes is currently the General Manager of ESK Holding, an innovative Digital Transformation company specialized in Advanced technology for Public Sector to enable a resilient and secure digitized economy, that builds alliances in innovative U.S. technology with the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia, creator of the first-of-its-kind “50 Women in Cybersecurity” nation-wide skilling initiative in Kuwait under the patronage of the U.S. Department of State through the U.S. Embassy in Kuwait, a podcast host “Tapping into the Untapped” as a community-based platform of scale with over +29K members in 13 countries to build bridges between continents while increasing representation and participation in mission-critical industries to reimagine the future and an Industry Advisor Board Member in the education industry.

In 2022 she was selected to participate at the exclusive Global Women in Leadership program at Georgetown University McDonough School of Business with Qiyadat in the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia with 159 women from 17 G20 nations with a 2.5% acceptance rate. A strategic program born during the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia’s presidency of the G20 in 2020.

Mercedes, who took a leap of faith by moving from Spain to Kuwait, has made significant contributions in Kuwait for the past seven and a half years: building and launching 3 ecommerce globally from Kuwait in the early days of the sector, to driving business growth at Microsoft as former Generalist Territory Channel Manager for SMB’s. She had received an award by Microsoft Corp in the U.S. in 2022 for her performance in Net Paid Seats Acquisitions (+400 in one Fiscal Year) that helped to accelerate the WW scorecard for SMB, ran for elections Worldwide and was the first Committee Co-Lead of the Technical Women at Microsoft community to be elected outside of the United States, and has provided national exposure to Microsoft in Kuwait through strategic initiatives by hosting a Cybersecurity Summit in 2022.

Prior to that she was a Business Development Manager with Kuwait’s Ruling Royal Family member H.H. Sheikha Intisar Salem Al Ali AlSabah.

Mercedes has empowered female professionals at different Institutions in Kuwait, such as, the National Bank of Kuwait, the UN hosted by the WHO & the American International School of Kuwait. She is an established opinion leader and is passionate about the transformative role of education, with multiple appearances as requested by the Ministry of Information of the State of Kuwait on the State-owned National TV Channel “KTV2” addressing innovation, AI, cybersecurity and the role of women in the economic fabric.

Aamir Khalid Pirzada

Chief Information Security Officer, National Metal Manufacturing and Casting Company (Maadaniyah), Kingdom of Saudi Arabia

Aamir is a seasoned professional with over 20 years of experience in the fields of Enterprise Resource Planning (ERP), Software Project Management, and IT Infrastructure. He has worked across diverse industries, including manufacturing, oil and gas, retail, public services, and telecommunications.

With his extensive expertise, Aamir has collaborated with top-level management to drive the transformation of information technology divisions within companies, taking them to advanced levels. In his role as a Chief Information Officer (CIO), he serves as a strategic technology manager, shaping the organization’s technology vision and direction.

Aamir’s responsibilities encompass overseeing sophisticated systems environments, business applications, IT budgets, and tools for business users. He enables companies to achieve significant success by implementing data strategies that enhance daily operations and streamline development efforts.He possesses a wealth of experience in implementing leading ERP applications such as SAP (S4Hana), Oracle e-Business Suite, and Microsoft Dynamics Ax. Aamir has showcased his project management capabilities by providing business analysis and solution design services during the software development planning stages. As a leader, he has led teams in ensuring the implementation of appropriate controls, security audits, and measures. Aamir has successfully established comprehensive security protocols and policies, ensuring the organization’s adherence to them.

Overall, Aamir Khalid Pirzada’s extensive experience, technical expertise, and leadership skills make him a valuable asset in driving technology advancements and achieving business success.

Ali Abdulla Hassan

Chief of Information Technology, Ministry of Oil Bahrain, Bahrain

Ali possesses over 19 years of experience in the Information Technology sector. Presently, he serves as the Chief of Information Technology at the Ministry of Oil and Environment in the Kingdom of Bahrain. Ali’s extensive skill set spans various domains, including Digital Transformation, Cybersecurity, Digital Sustainability, and Cloud Transformation. He holds a strong passion for leveraging IT Service Management frameworks, with a particular focus on implementing ITIL concepts and practices.

Ali’s primary objective is to contribute substantial value to both the Ministry of Oil and Environment and the Kingdom of Bahrain through the application of his enhanced knowledge and expertise in the realms of digital transformation and cybersecurity.

Dr. Ebrahim Al Zaabi

Artificial Intelligence and Cybersecurity Expert, United Arab Emirates

Dr. Ebrahim Al Alkeem is an expert in the effects of Artificial Intelligence, with a focus on securing critical infrastructure design and exponentially developing technologies on the economy, healthcare, and society. He explains the cyber threats and opportunities created by these new developments. As a proven leader in cybersecurity with over 17th years of experience in the field, Dr. Ebrahim has been helping companies grow their technological capabilities with keen insight and creative ideas. He has worked with many technologies in different positions. He is currently leading the cybersecurity department and is responsible for assessing internal technological capabilities from both OT and IT perspectives.  Dr. Ebrahim holds a Ph.D. degree in Engineering from Khalifa University in Artificial Intelligence and Cybersecurity. He manages to publish a couple of articles in the most prestigious journals in the world and has some of the worldwide recognized security certificates. He has been an expert speaker and panel member in cybersecurity events and summits. In 2015, Dr. Ebrahim won the Tamayaz Excellence Award, an appreciation award in the category of inventions of information technology & smart services. Also, he is an active member of many engineering associations across the world.

Sithembile Songo

Chief Information Security Officer, Eskom, South Africa

Ms. Sithembile Songo has been specialising in information security since 2003 and her experience is augmented by several leadership roles in both public and private sectors, including Financial sector, Telecom sector, Public Sector, Consulting firm, Utilities and other State-owned entities. She holds a Master of Science in Information Security and possess several cyber security professional certifications.

Sithembile is passionate about enabling organisations to achieve their business objectives in a secure manner to fulfil their mandates. Besides her extensive experience in other information security domains, she has also played a pivotal role in developing and implementing robust information security strategies to protect organisations against the increased attack surface, in support of the swift digital migration initiatives and hybrid mode of working.

Sithembile is currently heading the Information Security pillar of a wholly state-owned entity, Eskom, the producer of 95% of South Africa’s electricity which performed 163 613 household electrification connections during the 2020 financial year.

Ahmed Alkindi

Information Security Manager and Digital Transformation Leader, Mohamed bin Zayed University of Artificial Intelligence (MBZUAI), United Arab Emirates

Ahmed Alkindi, a seasoned technologist with over 23 years of experience in the information technology sector, presently serves as the Information Security Manager at the world-renowned Mohamed bin Zayed University of Artificial Intelligence, the pioneering institution dedicated to AI research and education. Throughout his career, Ahmed has held various information technology roles in both government and semi-government organizations and successfully managed key accounts for a regional IT service provider. His proactive approach to implementing cutting-edge technologies, such as cloud computing and IoT, has enabled businesses to undergo digital transformations while effectively managing cybersecurity risks. Ahmed embarked on his information security journey two decades ago, delivering impactful Information Security initiatives across multiple organizations, and holds an MBA from UAE University, exemplifying his dedication to excellence in the IT and security fields.
Dr. Anjum Arshad

Head of Information Technology and Cybersecurity, Gulf Organization for Research and Development (GORD), Qatar

Dr. Anjum Arshad is a highly accomplished professional with a Doctorate in Information Technology, specializing in the field of cybersecurity. With a strong commitment to ethical practices in the digital realm, Dr. Anjum Arshad holds prestigious certifications, including Certified Ethical Hacker (CEH), Certified Information Security Manager (CISM), and Certified Hacking Forensic Investigator (CHFI). As a seasoned expert in the world of IT and cybersecurity, Dr. Anjum Arshad brings a wealth of knowledge and experience to the table. With an unwavering dedication to safeguarding digital landscapes and ensuring the integrity of information systems, Dr. Anjum Arshad is a trusted authority in the industry, known for their expertise in ethical hacking, information security management, and digital forensics. Dr. Anjum’s contributions to the field extend beyond certifications, as they have actively engaged in cutting-edge research and practical applications to protect organizations and individuals from cyber threats. Her commitment to excellence in cybersecurity continues to make a lasting impact in an increasingly interconnected and vulnerable digital world.
Ayman Al Issa

Industrial Cybersecurity Lead and Senior Expert, McKinsey & Company, United Arab Emirates

Ayman Al Issa is the McKinsey Industrial Cybersecurity Lead and Senior Expert. Prior to joining McKinsey, he was the Chief Technologist for Booz Allen Hamilton’s Industrial Cyber Security practice in the international market. Over a career that spans more than 27 years to date, Al Issa has gained vast experience in the fields of industrial automation operational technology, information technology, and cyber security.
Javed Habib

Global Head | ICS Cybersecurity, Engie, United Arab Emirates

My current role is Global Head OT/ICS Security + Regional Head of Plant Controls & Life Cycle Management. I am responsible for providing technical support to all of Engie’s businesses in the AMEA (Asia, Middle East, and Africa) in the area of Industrial control systems and OT cyber security. Also, I have dual responsibility as global head for the scope of providing overall governance (GRC) for all thermal assets of the company in Europe and Americas i.e. in the area of OT cybersecurity.

I have been working in the industrial automation arena since 1993, after completing the education in Engineering from City University of New York, USA. In my professional life have worked for various national and multinational organizations in various countries. Control systems, OT/ICS security, networks and security of data and connected systems have always been my focus. In UAE, in last thirteen years I have worked for International Power (now Engie) , Dubal (Now Emirates Aluminum), and Takreer (now ADNOC Refinery). Currently I am working for Engie, a company with its HQ in France, has business/stake in business worldwide related to power generation, gas distribution, district cooling and other services and solutions. I have participated in various international technical conferences, two of his research papers have been published in the technical journals of University of Manchester.

Kumar Prasoon

Cybersecurity Expert, United Arab Emirates

Enterprise Digital Leader 2017 and Digital Retail Leader 2018 by MIT Sloan Review and the Khaleej Times plus CIO of the Year 2018 /2019/2020/2021, Kumar Prasoon is recognised as one of the Global Topmost CIOs in the Middle East and Africa (MEA), Asia and also at the international level. In this prominent role, he makes technology recommendations for the group’s executive management on the aspects of Fuzzy Analytics, Business Intelligence; BigData, IoT /IIoT, BlockChain, cloud computing, enterprise 2.0, integrated systems architecture and virtualization. Being the founder of Fuzzy Analytics Framework and Modern Industrial Complex Mathematical Calculus for Emerging Technologies, Kumar is also the global leading Industry Researcher, Scientist and Technology Evangelist for Smart Systems, Smart Retailing, Smart Cities, Smart Parking, Smart Engineering , Smart Instrumentation , Smart Metering and Industry Quantum Mechanics employing the Modern Emerging Technologies. He chairs as an advisory board member with numerous national and international consortiums in the capacity of consulting, research and bringing supreme Industry Innovations. Another strong facet is his contribution to the Academia Sector for the Global Universities from Far East to West where he has mentored , coached and executed successful projects with hundreds of incumbents in Bachelors , Masters and Doctorates in Engineering , IT , Business and Management in the areas of Emerging Technologies , Emerging Markets and Emerging Systems.
Prof. Hoda Alkhzaimi (PhD)

Assistant professor, Director for center for cyber security, Co-chair, New York University Abu Dhabi, EMARATSEC, WEF global future council, United Arab Emirates

Hoda Alkhzaimi is an experienced, motivated and innovative leader in industrialization, economic development, green field projects development and tech development. With over seventeen years of successfully driven numerous technological investments internationally and Locally especially in in the UAE. She has successfully led various projects towards achieving strategic, financial and operational efficiencies and synergies worldwide. She has a particular focus in leading and motivating tech-based industrial investments globally. Through her strategic, financial, and operational insight, she has overseen the successful turnaround of multiple large-scale projects, facilitated the research and development process while creating growth potential for each prospect.

Additionally, Hoda has an expertise in developing industrial prospects that respects different technology readiness levels and curate economic growth strategies based on those prospects. Furthermore, she takes a special interest in sustainable development goal and value-based investments. Currently she is holding the position of CO-chair for the World Economic Forum Global Cyber Security Future Council on Cyber Security and Director and founder for (EMARATSEC) NYU’s Center for Emerging Advanced Research Acceleration for Technology, Director and founding member at NYUAD’s Center of Cyber Security, and holds a research assistant professorship at NYU, her work in research, development for multiple portfolios ,including yet not limited to, cryptology, AI and cyber security initiatives have allowed her to make significant contributions to these field. From developing cryptology research ecosystems to heading departments, industrial ventures focused on emerging technologies hardware and software R&Ds. Hoda’s passion for economic cluster development has been an undeniable force within her career.

Dr. Alkhzaimi has specific expertise in cryptology; cryptanalysis, constructing and validating security hardware and software components, constructing trusted security architectures for different environments in different products for the respective industries. Hoda. Alkhzaimi obtained her Ph.D. in Cryptanalysis from Denmark Technical University. Her current research interests include Space, Aerospace, and UAV and autonomous systems security, constructing and analyzing cryptographic primitives, validating, and investigating links between different cryptanalytic approaches and utilizing cryptographic primitives in different cybersecurity. architectures as in Internet of Things and big data analysis among others. Her research includes analysis of the effect of AI and machine learning techniques on improving security analytics. She is also leading several AI based initiatives globally.

Dr. Alkhzaimi is the president of Emirates Digital Association for Women, a non-for-profit organization endorsed by the ministry of social affairs in the UAE. This association supports national and international initiatives that aim to empower sustainable economic investments and development for diverse communities with specific focus on inclusivity initiatives. This includes, yet not limited to, establishing, and creating ecosystems that support sustainable business development in the UAE and the international scene which supports economic indigenous growth of local economies. In tandem, she is the Ambassador and the Chief Executive Officer for Women in Artificial Intelligence international community that aims to improve the scientific and professional positioning of AI for social impact and women’s contributions within the field, especially in the MENA region. She led the Women in Engineering Chapter in Abu Dhabi and the UAE lead for INWES MENA which is the global network for organizations of women in science, technology, engineering, and mathematics.

Along with her initial master’s in science in Mathematics, Cryptology and Coding theory from INPG, she has a Masters degree from London Business School in Business management with a focus on finance and investments as well as a masters of international business law from Sorbonne University with a focus on building sustainable economic ecosystems and investments for valuable technological and industrial impacts. She is currently establishing an investment fund with a focus on industrial developments for global SDG impact with multiple local and international financial and industrial partners. Hoda is an advisor on the knowledge cluster on emerging economies and technologies for the World Economic Forum on its different tasks force on global future councils and on the global center for the fourth industrial revolution. as well as being on multiple investments committees globally as well as audit committees. She has several board levels seats in multiple global and UAE lead investment funds and industries.

Mohammed Zumla

Cybersecurity Consultant, United Kingdom

Mohammed Zumla, founder of Cyber ICS in the UK, established the company in 2018 to address the newly introduced NIS regulations in the EU. He led the cyber regulatory division at OFGEM, collaborating with government bodies like the Health and Safety Executive, the UK’s National Cyber Security Centre, and the Centre for Protection of National Infrastructure, influencing sector policies and crafting NIS guidance and inspection frameworks. Mohammed authored the RIIO2 cyber resilience methodology, crucial for sector funding, in close collaboration with senior leadership and industry operators.

Before Cyber ICS, he founded Deloitte UK’s SCADA consultancy practice in 2009. At Qatar Petroleum, he served as acting Chief Security Officer during the Shamoon attack, acted as Sector Authority for industry operators, and initiated the Cyber Security Partnership Forum. Mohammed’s career also includes leadership at General Electric (GE) Dubai, contributing to IEC62443 standards and leading assessments for Critical National Infrastructure Operators.

With a background in Big 4 consultancy, major oil and gas, OT vendor experience, EU Commission collaboration, and UK cyber regulatory leadership, Mohammed offers a comprehensive perspective, addressing technical, managerial, and organizational aspects. He holds numerous ICS security certifications, including SANS GICSP and SANS GRID, and actively participates in World Economic Forum working groups, IET events, EU Commission consultations, CIGRE working groups, and NARUC advisory roles.

Abdulrahman Al-Nimari

Chief Information Security Officer, Saudi Arabia Government, Kingdom of Saudi Arabia

A self-motivated renowned cyber security expert and a frequent conference speaker with more than 25 years of IT and cybersecurity experience.

Al-Nimari played different roles, in government and private sectors, in different IT and cyber security fields: Network/System Administration, IT Management, Cybersecurity Consultation and Architecting. Always working to advance cyber security and contribute to community. Al-Nimari was awarded the Arab Social Media Cyber Security Influencer Award for 4 consecutive years 2019-2022 by the Arab Cyber Security Conference in Cairo. He was also among the top 2022 IFSEC Global Security Influencers.

He holds industry standard cyber security and project management certifications:


Ezzeddine Jradi

Chief Transformation & Business Excellence Officer, Emirates District Cooling (EMICOOL) - United Arab Emirates

Ezzeddine is a seasoned executive, currently serving as the Chief Transformation & Business Excellence Officer at Emicool in Dubai. Throughout his career, he has taken on various roles within the organization, including Senior Strategy Manager and Risk & Compliance Manager. In addition to his extensive experience in the fields of IT and finance, he has emerged as a dedicated advocate for digital transformation and sustainability.

Ezzeddine’s primary focus is on leveraging digital initiatives to enhance customer experiences, drive operational excellence, reduce costs, increase revenue, and improve overall operational efficiency. His professional journey also encompasses the establishment and leadership of new functions, the management of high-performing teams, the formulation of innovative commercial strategies, nurturing senior stakeholder relationships, championing risk management, ensuring corporate governance, overseeing project management, and promoting sustainability and corporate social responsibility.

Recognized for his strategic acumen and ability to instigate change and innovation, Ezzeddine possesses exceptional communication, presentation, and negotiation skills. He holds a bachelor’s degree in Communication & Electronic Engineering, a Master’s Degree in Financial Management, and an Executive Masters in Islamic Financial Management. Moreover, he is a certified Project Management Professional (PMP®) and holds the TOGAF 9.2® certification, further demonstrating his commitment to professional excellence.

Dr. Shaheela Banu

Chief Information Security Officer Kuwait Gulf Oil Company (KGOC), Kuwait

Dr. Shaheela is currently serving as the Chief Information Security Officer (CISO) at a prominent Oil and Gas industry. She holds a distinguished Doctorate in the field of Cybersecurity and boasts over 15 years of hands-on experience in managing Vulnerability & Patch Updates, with expertise as a Malware Analyst. Dr. Shaheela’s career spans across esteemed institutions in the Insurance and Banking sectors in Kuwait, where she has made significant contributions.

Her professional journey includes serving as a Lead Pentester and ISMS Auditor for several Healthcare and Educational institutions in Kuwait and India. Dr. Shaheela holds prestigious certifications as a Certified Ethical Hacker and Cisco Security Specialist, reflecting her commitment to excellence in the cybersecurity domain.

Beyond her professional endeavors, Dr. Shaheela is a dedicated advocate for Cybersecurity Awareness and has actively engaged in awareness initiatives across various countries, including India, Kuwait, UAE, Saudi Arabia, Qatar, and the USA. Her passion for cybersecurity extends to her role as a Research Writer and Researcher for the Cybersecurity & Infrastructure Security Agency (CISA), where she contributes to advancing the field’s knowledge and practices.

Mohammed H. AlAbbadi

Group CISO, Fertiglobe PLC, United Arab Emirates

Mohammed H. AlAbbadi, an ex-Emirates-Airlines & ex-Schlumberger and a graduate of the American University of Sharjah, is a seasoned senior cybersecurity leader with over 19 years of diversified technical & managerial cybersecurity (IT, OT/ICS) and privacy experience across UAE, Saudi, Egypt, Algeria, France, Malaysia & Uganda and in various industries (including airlines, banking, defense, education, energy, oil & gas, healthcare, retail and utilities).

He is currently the CISO of Fertiglobe PLC, a fertilizers manufacturer joint venture.

It is also noteworthy that AlAbbadi is the author of the upcoming book: “Secure Your Clients .. Secure Your Future” and been holding more than 27 cybersecurity industry certifications such as CCISO, CGEIT, CISA, CISM, CISSP, CRISC and GIAC GICSP. He’s also a Certified Trainer of Trainers from the American East Coast University.

Michael Mosaad

Cyber Emerging Technologies Director, Deloitte, UAE

Michael is a Director with Deloitte, leading the Cyber Emerging Technologies practice across the Middle East region. He is a solutions-oriented security professional with over 12 years of experience, specializing in emerging areas of cyber space, whereby he has contributed to the successful delivery of complex cyber security services to critical national infrastructure entities across various industry sectors within APAC and M.E.

Michael has in depth knowledge of Security Architecture & Operational Technology (OT) Security and has proven experience applying industry standards such as IEC62443 and NIST 800-82 to securely design Industrial Control Systems. He holds a bachelor’s degree in Computer & Systems Engineering and has acquired several certifications including TOGAF L1 & L2, SABSA, GICSP, CISSP, among others.

Nouf Alhabbad

Operation Technology Network Security Division Manager, Saudi Electricity Company, Saudi Arabia

Nouf Alhabbad is the Manager of the Operation Technology Network Security Division at the Saudi Electricity Company in Saudi Arabia. She is a driven individual who believes that ambition is the first step towards success and takes concrete actions to achieve her goals rather than merely dreaming about them.

Nouf graduated with first-class honors from the Faculty of Computer and Information Sciences. She is a dedicated researcher specializing in the fields of artificial intelligence and cybersecurity, known for inspiring others in these domains. Currently, she is pursuing her master’s degree in artificial intelligence at Al-Imam University while concurrently serving as a senior cyber security analyst.

With several years of experience in diverse information technology and operational settings, Nouf has particularly excelled in the realm of cybersecurity. Her expertise spans various aspects of cybersecurity, including operations, defense, implementation, and project management.

Nouf’s outstanding abilities have earned her recognition as one of the young professional talents in her field. She is not only a confident speaker but also a quick learner and a motivating influence on others. In addition to her role as an influencer, Nouf is proficient in the development of machine learning algorithms and tools.

Basically, I’m grateful for where I am and excited about where I’m going.

Hussain Abdullatif Hussain Altayeb

Head – Governance and Cyber Security, Bapco Upstream, Bahrain

Hussain Altayeb is a dedicated cybersecurity leader with over 8 years of experience safeguarding organizations against evolving cyber threats. Hussain is leading a dynamic team in developing and implementing robust security strategies to ensure the integrity, availability, and confidentiality of critical assets across the IT and OT
Clinton Firth

Partner, Global Cybersecurity Energy Industry leader, Ernst & Young Global Limited (EY) - United Arab Emirates

Clinton Firth is a global thought leader in Cybersecurity and is the Global Partner in charge of EY Cybersecurity Energy. He brings clients a unique business perspective as an experienced Cybersecurity executive with successful senior roles including consulting. He managed security operations, threat intelligence and solution design. This is complemented with diversified experience and background that has spanned all industries within Energy, Commercial, Government and Defense clients.

Clinton’s unique experience has helped many customers with Cybersecurity issues ranging from board level, strategy, managed services to consultative threat intelligence. All conducted in a pragmatic, solution orientated approach and delivery relevant to the client’s business.

He holds a bachelor’s in computing & bachelor’s in business and an Advanced Diploma in Intelligence and Security Analysis

Shumon A Zaman

Chief Information and Digital Officer, Ali & Sons Holding, United Arab Emirates

A digital native with over 20 years’ experience in digital disruption and transformations. With executive education from MIT coupled with Silicon Valley experience; Shumon brings a different mindset to delivering value having led global projects across Europe, US and the MENA region and is currently leading Ali & Sons digital transformation journey in Abu Dhabi.

Javed A. Akbar

Chief Governance, Risk, and Compliance Officer, Tasnee, Saudi Arabia

Javed is a distinguished Chief Governance, Risk, and Compliance Officer renowned for his exceptional leadership in navigating complex business and financial landscapes. With a stellar record of guiding stakeholders through strategic governance and financial challenges, including those posed by climate change and resource constraints, he brings invaluable insight to boardrooms worldwide. His extensive background as a senior executive in prominent organizations, coupled with his service on boards and various committees across North America, Europe, and the Middle East, underscores his expertise in driving sustainable growth and fostering effective governance.

Beyond his corporate roles, Javed is a captivating speaker and consultant, delivering compelling insights at international conferences, summits, and exclusive executive gatherings. His dynamic presence and engaging sessions resonate with audiences, establishing him as a trusted advisor and thought leader in the realms of risk management, governance (ESG), and technology.

Phil Cracknell

CISO for a UK Defence company & Former Cabinet Office Cyber Security Subject Matter Expert, UK Defence company, United Kingdom

Phil is regarded as one of Europe’s leading information security experts. He has held eight CISO (Chief Information Security Officer) roles spanning five different industry sectors over thirty years.
He is currently CISO of a defence sector contractor as well as a non-executive and advisory board member of three other UK companies.
His experience was gained in a variety of high-profile technology and security management roles, enabling him to offer a unique and captivating insight into the world of information security, cyber-threats, and risk management.
As national publicity on the subject of ‘Wireless security’ peaked in 2002 and Celebrity phone hacking in 2011-14 Phil became somewhat of a cyber-security celebrity with appearances on Sky TV, BBC News and coverage in national and industry press.
Phil is results driven and enjoys many years of project success, notable technical deliverables and some pioneering views and opinion. He has worked for HomeServe Plc, Yell Plc, Camelot, Skype, Nomura, Deloitte, TNT Express, UK Power Network, Arriva Plc and more recently was the cyber security SME for the Cabinet Office. He was the founder and chairman of the non-profit ClubCISO group and the Metrics Project.
Phil is also a board advisor for The Cyber Escape Room Co., IP Performance and Utility Networks.

Dr. Mohamed Khalefa Sarrab

Information Technology Development Coordinator, Data Services Department, Research Division, Organization of the Petroleum Exporting Countries (OPEC), Austria

Dr. Sarrab is currently working as a Coordinator of IT Development Team, Data Services Department, Research Division, Organization of the Petroleum Exporting Countries (OPEC), Vienna, Austria as well as the Information Security Management System Coordinator. He obtained his Ph.D. in Computer Science from De Montfort University, Leicester, United Kingdom. M.Sc. in Computer Science and Information Technology from VSB Technical University of Ostrava, Czech Republic, and a B.Sc. degree in Computer Science from, the University of Zawia, Libya. His research interests are in areas of Information Security, software engineering, smart cities, human-computer interaction (HCI), and mobile applications. He is also interested in runtime verification and information flow control, privacy, mobile learning, and open-source software. Dr. Sarrab has published over 90 articles and 3 books related to M-learning, Mobile Applications, and runtime verification. Dr. Sarrab is a senior member of the IEEE, the IEEE Computer Society, and the IEEE Communications Society

Shaker Saleh Hashlan

Solution Architect, Xage

Shaker Hashlan graduated from KFUPM in 2007 with a bachelor’s degree in computer engineering, focusing on systems security architecture and design. He is a cybersecurity professional with over 16 years of experience in the field of OT & ICS cybersecurity. Shaker is an advocate for maintaining the security and integrity of our digital infrastructure, especially in critical infrastructure sectors such as oil & gas, energy, water, manufacturing, and transportation.

Shaker has accumulated experience in OT/ICS GRC & assessments, pen-testing, incident response, and workforce development. He is always interested in discussing the latest trends and challenges in ICS cybersecurity and has written several papers and articles for various publications. He has also spoken at several international venues.


Chief Information Security Officer ALMAHA Petroleum Products Marketing Co. (SAOG) Oman

My experiences 24 Cybersecurity, Privacy and GRC leader; able to operate effectively & independently within 1LoD, 2LoD and 3LoD – to offer governance, challenge, and audit. Served on Internal Audit Committee and as the Information Governance & Security Lead Governor from 2023-2024 in Dhahirah International Development &Investment and Borad member in Information Systems Audit and Control Association (ISACA)2021-2024 I would like to continue to use my outlined experience, competencies in a permanent role, to reduce IT, Cyber, Third Party, Conduct, Regulatory, Fraud and Reputational risk, and related Regulatory Fines within a culturally rich organization.

Currently working in CISO role with ALMAHA Petroleum Products Marketing Co. SAOG, an organization with 400+ employees sine 2021 until now. In past successfully delivered as GRC head, Security transformation lead, lead Security architect, head of IT Security Compliance and security lead in many important projects.

His achievements

He has over 20 years of Information Security experience with 17 years in leadership and strategic positions.

TALAL is passionate about innovation, entrepreneurship, IT security and business strategy. He has Master Degree of Network Security and Digital Forensics.

Continued success in sharpening my ace since 2017; qualified 5+ top rated internationally recognized professional exams covering all major domains; CISM, CRISC, CISA, CDPSE ,IFRS16, CSNA and CSNE.

Irene Corpuz

Cyber Policy Expert, Dubai Government entity; Co-Founder, Women in Cyber Security Middle East (WiCSME), UAE

Irene Corpuz has more than 30 years of combined experience in IT (IT Operations, Information Security, and Governance, Risk & Compliance), Project Management, Quality and Excellence models, and is an ISO Auditor. Irene is also a Co-founder of the Women in Cyber Security Middle East (WiCSME) and is engaged in its activities that support women and girls in their professional growth. She has received several accolades, is a regular speaker in conferences locally and globally, on holds various certifications.
Asma Habeeb

Senior Cybersecurity Consultant, Oil & Gas Company, Oman

Asma Habeeb is a Senior Cybersecurity Consultant with 11 years of extensive experience in Cybersecurity in various fields such as Advanced Cyber Threat Intelligence, OSINT, SAP and Application Security, Risk Management, Cybersecurity Internal Audit and Vulnerability Management. She is a keynote speaker on Cyber Threat Intelligence and OSINT in Oman’s First Digital Government Forum.

Asma started her career as a Cybersecurity consultant in one of the Big Four and is currently managing Cyber Threat Intelligence in a leading Oil and Gas Organization in the Sultanate of Oman.

Asma is an Information Management Graduate holding leading professional qualifications such as CISM, CEH, SAP Access Management, Threat Intelligence Analyst, ISO 27001 LA, ITIL. She is also a mental health passionate and researcher.

Manal Hussain Al Balushi

Risk & Compliance Specialist, Oil & Gas Company, Oman

Manal is specialized in risk management, compliance, and boosting cybersecurity awareness across IT and OT sectors. With a solid foundation of over six years in network security, risk management, audit, and cloud security, she has significantly advanced her expertise. Holding a Bachelor’s in IT Networking from the Higher College of Technology and a Master’s in Cybersecurity from the University of Birmingham, Manal has complemented her education with key certifications such as CCNA, CRISC, and Global Industrial Cybersecurity Professional (GICSP). Her excellence was spotlighted when she received the “Rising Star” award from the Woman in Cybersecurity Middle East and North Africa in 2022. Manal has also shone in competitive arenas, notably as the best female performer in the Cisco Netrider Competition where she placed second among Omani contestants. Beyond her career, Manal is deeply engaged in community service, actively participating in the Woman in Cybersecurity Middle East and North Africa community and volunteering with the Oman Cancer Association, showcasing her commitment to societal betterment.

Sara Ibrahim

Senior Manager Advanced Cyber Security Expert, UAE

Sara is a versatile cybersecurity expert serving as a trusted technical advisor for clients and a subject matter expert in various technical and GRC domains. She is passionate about applying her technical skills and business acumen to solve challenging cybersecurity problems and create value for her clients and stakeholders. Sara is committed to continuous learning and staying updated on the latest trends and developments in the cybersecurity domain.

Dr. Reem Faraj AlShammari

Global Thought Leader in Cybersecurity and Digital Transformation, Kuwait Oil Company

Dr. Reem Faraj Al-Shammari is a well-known Global Thought Leader in Cyber Security & Technology in the Energy Sector, Kuwait.

She is also a Certified Innovation Leader (CIL), a Harvard Business Alumni, a Fellow in the Institute of Innovation and Knowledge Exchange (FIKE), a Fellow in the UK-Gulf Women in CyberSecurity, a TEDX & Keynote Speaker, Advisory Board member, Wild Card and Change Agent, Multiplier, Global Award’s Judge, a Co-Author in World leading Publications such as MIT & WEF, a Global Mentor in the UN’s ITU Women in Cyber Mentorship Program, and the First United Nation’s Civil Society Stakeholder’s Representative from Global Women in CyberSecurity Groups in delivering an official Statement at the UN’s Open-Ended Working Group (OEWG) on Security 2021-2025 in United Nations Headquarters, New York.

Dr. Reem promotes diversity, as she is the Founding Partner and Board member of Women in CyberSecurity MiddleEast Group with +2000 Women members covering +20 Countries. She also plays vital leading roles at the Diversity and Inclusion Council of Kuwait’s Oil Sector as she was the First Female CISO in Kuwait’s Energy Sector who contributed heavily in the maturity of CyberSecurity journey, and she’s currently leading Digital transformation Journeys under Corporate Solutions at the Energy Sector in Kuwait.

Dr. Reem contributes heavily in Technology & CyberSecurity Global Communities and is quite recognized at national, regional and international levels where she’s recognized by World, Country and Industry leaders: H.H the Crown Prince of Kuwait, Head of UAE’s Cyber Security Council, CEOs and Deputy CEOs at Kuwait’s Oil Sector. She had won the Global CyberSecurity Woman of the Year 2023 “Category Barrier Breaker” Award, Ranked # 1 at IFSEC Global Top Influencers in Security & Fire “CyberSecurity Category”, The CIO50 Middle East Award 2022 Winner, IDC’s Top 50 Women Achievers “Business & Digital Transformation Leader”, Global EWF’s Regional Leadership Award, MESA’s Women Security Leaders Award, , and The Arab CISO of the Year.

Concluding with a Quote that describes Dr. Reem and her impact in this World:

“We meet many people in life, they are either a Plus (+), or a Minus (-),

Dr. Reem, on the other hand, is a Multiplier (x)… She is able to Multiply from One single Step or Initiative to a Multiple of them in Short Time.” – Kuwait Petroleum Corporation, MD Planning& Finance, Bader Al-Attar