MECCA, Saudi Arabia, June 11, 2023 /PRNewswire/ — Digital transformation has become an integral part of Saudis’ lives, especially that Saudi Arabia ranks first in the index of UN ESCWA for e-government services, as well as ranking 11th among G20. Hence, the Ministry of Hajj and Umrah provides more than 121 e-services for more than 30 million people inside Saudi Arabia, besides millions performing Hajj and Umrah from different countries. The Ministry guarantees cyber security to protect the pilgrims’ data and information against different attacks.
The Ministry of Hajj and Umrah managed to issue more than 50 million Umrah permissions, besides serving 30 million beneficiaries during 2023, which meet the developing modern needs.
According to WASEDA Japanese index, this data shows a great leap by Saudi Arabia, especially the Ministry of Hajj and Umrah, which ranks 8th among 217 government entities in the Saudi 10th Digital Transformation Measurement Index for 2022.
Dr. Tawfiq Al-Rabiah, the Minister of Hajj and Umrah, stressed, during the “Creative Makers Forum” launched on June 4th, that the Ministry is considering to provide e-payment services in order to link the e-systems in the pilgrims’ countries of origin with these in Saudi Arabia.
The hardest task, while providing e-services, lies in finding a safe cyber environment for the pilgrims’ data, which Saudi Arabia ensures via the efforts of National Cyber-Security Authority, which carried out a cyber-security exercise for Hajj season 2023, on May 28th. The exercise included a simulation for dealing with different kinds of cyber-attacks, while applying response mechanism to urgent cyber incidents, starting with readiness, discovery and analysis, and ending with containment, recovery and post-incident procedures.