Senior bankers gather for SWIFT UAE User Group forum
Event hosted in partnership with the UAE Banks Federation addresses the opportunities and challenges facing the banking industry
Over 60 senior executives from leading banking and financial institutions in the UAE gathered recently in Abu Dhabi for a forum for the SWIFT UAE User Group. Hosted by SWIFT, the global provider of secure financial messaging services, in partnership with the UAE Banks Federation (UBF), a professional body representing 48 member banks operating in the UAE, the meeting highlighted the main opportunities and challenges facing the banking industry as well as the need to foster greater collaboration to face payment fraud and enhancing the overall cybersecurity environment.
Welcoming attendees, Mr. Nasser Sarris said in his opening remarks, “It’s great to see many important stakeholders come together on a common platform to discuss the way forward for our industry. On behalf of the UAE Banks Federation, I thank them for their continuous support to build a robust and secure financial ecosystem. We look forward to many more fruitful interactions and further collaboration with SWIFT as we continue our focus toward enhancing banking security standards in the UAE.”
Mr. Khaled Moharem, Head of Middle East & North Africa, SWIFT, said: “SWIFT key priority is to ensure that our network, products and services continue to meet the evolving needs of our customers. The National Member Groups play a very significant role in this context. The meetings are an opportunity for the community to provide valuable feedback so that SWIFT can proactively develop solutions for local markets. We are delighted to co-host these events with the UAE Banks Federation, being a pivotal partner for SWIFT in the region.”
During the meeting, Mr. Arnaud Boulnois, Global head of product management, provided attendees with an overview on SWIFT’s global payments innovation (GPI) initiative. Designed to meet customer expectations for speed and transparency in cross-border payments, SWIFT GPI enables banks to provide end-to-end payments tracking. SWIFT has developed and securely hosted a Tracker database ‘in the cloud’, to give end-to-end visibility on the status of a payment transaction from the moment it is sent until it is confirmed, thus bringing in greater predictability to cross-border payments.
As the threat landscape adapts and evolves daily, Mr. Boulnois stressed the need for both SWIFT and its customers to remain vigilant and proactive over the long term. He also invited the attention of UBF members to SWIFT’s newly-introduced Customer Security Program. A dedicated program aimed at helping customers reinforce the security of their SWIFT-related infrastructure, the Customer Security Program provides financial institutions with the necessary tools for strengthening their cyber risk management in the face of persistent threat of attacks.