Timothy Wood joins KPMG Lower Gulf as head of cybersecurity practice

06 September 2018 Consultancy-me.com 2 min. read

KPMG Lower Gulf has appointed former BAE Systems general manager for the Middle East Timothy Wood as its new Head of Cyber Security, with Wood made an Associate Partner.

The Lower Gulf branch of Big Four firm KPMG has bolstered its burgeoning Advisory practice with the key appointment of new associate partner Timothy Wood as its Head of Cyber Security, to be based in Dubai and covering the territories of Oman and the UAE which constitute the local arm’s operations.

Wood is the former Middle East Regional Managing Director of BAE Systems Applied Intelligence – the business and tech consulting line of the British multinational defence, security, and aerospace giant BAE Systems – where he joined as a director in 2012 and spent nearly seven years before crossing to KPMG last month.

Altogether, Wood has gained over 20 years of experience in the technology industry across the UK, Europe and Middle East – earning a Masters’ degree in Physics with 1st class honours from the University of Nottingham in 1998 and having since worked with high-level public and private sector clients to deliver complex tech solutions.Timothy Wood - Head of Cyber Security at KPMGAt KPMG Lower Gulf, Wood has been tasked with leading cyber security and technology governance in the UAE and Oman, and will draw on his strategic expertise in cyber security, cyber-crime and personnel security programmes – having previously served the government, law enforcement, oil & gas, telecommunications and financial services sectors.

Wood’s appointment comes at a time when both the cyber-threat is heating up in the region along with competition among consultancies for the cybersecurity dollar. Recently, a global report from Accenture’s intelligence arm Accenture Security iDefense cited Iran as a growing threat to international cybersecurity, with regional foes including the UAE in the cross-hairs.

Meanwhile, both local governments and advisories are ramping up their cyber-defence capacities. Saudi Arabia has only recently inked deals with all of Kaspersky Labs, Northrop Grumman, Lockheed Martin and Booz Allen Hamilton to boost its cyber capabilities, while EY, for example, late last year launched an advanced multi-million dollar regional cybersecurity centre in Oman.

While at BAE Systems, Wood was previously involved in a programme to train UAE government officials in cyber-defence, noting at the time the already growing threat to government agencies, with 24 in the Arabian Gulf occurring in 2012. “Out of these attacks, the vast majority are espionage attacks, where sensitive data is being targeted for theft,” Wood said at the time.