SICO has made several innovations throughout 2022 that have furthered its digital transformation agenda. Online trading platform SICO LIVE’s customer onboarding was updated with the launch of eKYC services operated by the BENEFIT Company in collaboration with the Information & eGovernment Authority (iGA), under the supervision of the Central Bank of Bahrain. This new feature utilizes the national eKYC platform, an extensive online database enabling financial institutions to easily authenticate client identities and retrieve KYC data electronically without the need for in-person interactions. The new automated system allows customer onboarding to take place in real time, seamlessly and securely.
The relocation of SICO’s offices to the Bahrain World Trade Center (BWTC) in 2022 involved the creation of a new, state-of-the-art data center, which stands today as a major step forward in the advancement of the bank’s digital infrastructure. In preparation for the move, SICO digitized all of its paper archives – around 1.2 million files. These were all uploaded digitally and transferred to the bank’s servers and portals, making them readily available for all end users. Plans are also in the works to begin the digitization of all the bank’s backlog files with the goal of becoming a fully paperless operation. Printing across the bank’s offices has become minimal, to be used only when necessary. For interactions that still maintain a fax requirement, e-faxing has been set up to further reduce paper usage.
As SICO continues to adopt new digital solutions and integrate more advanced systems, protection against cyberattacks has become increasingly vital to the safety and continuity of operations across the Bank’s business lines. In 2022, SICO signed a partnership deal with Beyon Cyber, a company that offers end-to-end cybersecurity solutions. The collaboration will improve the maturity of SICO’s IT infrastructure and strengthen its cybersecurity architecture, offering increased confidence in its ability to safeguard against any external hazards. Beyon Cyber provided SICO with a managed Cybersecurity Operations Center (CSOC), with a dedicated professional team for 24/7 monitoring of all SICO’s systems to ensure that they are all effectively protected against any potential cyber threats using advanced AI technology.