22 Feb Israel appoints ex-general as head of government cyber security
Israel’s cabinet has appointed Gaby Portnoy to head up the country’s National Cyber Directorate. Portnoy will replace Yigal Unna, who stepped down last month, as chief of cyber security.
The Israel government confirmed the appointment of the retired military intelligence general on Sunday to news agency Reuters.
The Cyber Directorate looks after Israel’s cyberspace and is tasked with defending and building up cyber strength. It works directly with organisations in the country dealing with cyber attacks, and helps to prevent attacks. Israeli government websites and companies face thousands of attacks daily but most are stopped.
Currently, Portnoy is chief operating officer of high-tech firm EnVizon Medical.
Prior to this, he held a position in the armed forces for 31 years which including senior positions such as head of operations for the Intelligence Corps.
Portnoy takes on his new role as Israel’s cyber sector becomes one of the fastest growing in the country, The sector raised $8.8billion in 2021, which was triple the amount compared to the previous year. Another 40 Israeli cyber firms were bought by foreign companies for a total of $3.5 billion, while Israeli cyber exports reached $11 billion in 2021.
The directorate said 40% of the private global investment in cybersecurity funding rounds are in Israel.