Start a cyber security business in Dubai, UAE

cyber security business in Dubai

The UAE cyber security market is growing massively due to technological advancements and increasing threats to individuals and companies. The need to protect important documents and sensitive information is boosting the market. For this reason, we allow you to start a cyber security business in Dubai and the Emirates.

In this article, we will make sure you understand everything about the cyber security market and how to enter it properly. Threats such as ransomware and malware have been putting the market in danger for the past years. However, before you start your cyber security business in the UAE, there are things you should know. Let us observe:

  1. Why is cyber security becoming so important in the UAE?
  2. What are the advantages of setting up a cyber security business in the UAE?
  3. How setting up in different jurisdictions influences your cyber security business
  4. What is the step-by-step process to start a cyber security business in Dubai?
  5. What is the cost of a cyber security license?
  6. How can we help you set up a cyber security business in the Emirates?

1. Why is cyber security becoming so important in the UAE?

The cybersecurity business in the UAE is becoming increasingly important. More than 90% of UAE residents have access to the internet. This, and a booming internet-based economy, new developments such as smart cities, the cloud, and the internet of things make use of interconnectivity, making this sector more crucial than ever.

Further, these developments allow both the private and public sectors to create products and solutions tailored to the user’s needs. Therefore, a massive segment of the UAE population and economy is exposed to cyberspace.

With the expansion of internet-driven processes encompassing daily lives, economic, and social interactions; cyber-attacks are becoming more prominent and sophisticated. For instance, between January and March 2019, the UAE alone had 1.1 million examples of phishing attacks, as well as more than 20 million instances of malware incursions.

The UAE, under the Federal Law #5 has made the act of using the internet to record a conversation in video or audio, photographing others without permission, and invading the privacy of other individuals a criminal offense punishable by law.

Important industries that rely heavily on cybersecurity are those that have been targeted the most. This is due to the nature of sensitive information associated with them. For example, the banking and health sectors are industries rich in sensitive data, as they store thousands of records having financial and personal information of individuals.

However, government departments such as immigration, labor, company licensing, military, are also becoming targeted areas.

2. What are the advantages of setting up a cyber security business in the UAE?

There are various advantages you will obtain from this thriving and flourishing market. In addition, setting up a business in this region can be an easy and quick process. At Connect Free Zone, we allow you to register your business in less than an hour; with the setup taking 3 to 5 days on average, excepting any additional certifications in which we can assist you too.

Foreign business owners can fully own the company by taking advantage of several corporate structures. Moreover, the UAE has an exception policy for paying income taxes for all companies across the country.

As we mentioned, cyber-attacks are becoming more prevalent and sophisticated with cyberspace expanding to social relationships, economic interactions, and everyday life. That is to say, if you set up your business correctly, you will never run out of clients.

In addition to these advantages, an appropriate geographical position, a supportive corporate culture, and international recognition contribute to the city’s attractiveness as an ideal market for starting your cyber security business in Dubai.

3.3 How setting up in different jurisdictions influences your cyber security business

One of the main challenges when you are starting your cyber security company is to choose between the UAE’s Mainland or one of the country’s free trade zones. Likewise, where you decide to establish your business will depend on your organizational needs, your visa and staffing requirements, and the location of your target clients.

3.1 UAE Mainland setup

Foreign investors and entrepreneurs have an attractive option when setting up their cyber security business in Dubai. One of the key benefits for cybersecurity businesses in the Mainland area is the chance to bid for UAE government and semi-government tenders and contracts.

In contrast, a free zone company is not usually able to conduct business in the Mainland area and cannot approach the government for work, or qualify for Mainland and government tenders.

The UAE’s government recently created the Information Security Regulations (ISR). This is a good opportunity for businesses to be part of this cybersecurity strategy, as it was designed to establish a common protection guideline for both private and public organizations.

However, it is important to note that Mainland businesses require a local sponsor or partner to hold 51% of the organization’s shares. Despite that, it is possible to partner up with us using a corporate platform holding the shares to ensure the foreign end of the company has 100% control of assets, operations, revenue, and IP.

3.2. UAE Free Zones

The UAE has more than 40 free trade zones across the country. Each one has its own set of regulations and rules. Multinationals, companies, and local and foreign entrepreneurs starting a cybersecurity business in any of the UAE’s free zones have full ownership of their organizations, 0% personal and corporate tax, and complete profit repatriation.

For instance, different zones offer tailored benefits to specific industries. Here is a list of the most popular free zones in Dubai among the cybersecurity areas to set up:

3.2.1 Dubai Internet City

This important zone in the UAE covers around 1.5 sq. ft providing access to more than 1600 companies across the tech and IT sector including big data, the Internet of Things (IoT), Artificial Intelligence (AI), Cybersecurity, Crypto, and more.

3.2.2 Dubai Silicon Oasis

Dubai Silicon Oasis is the only technology park that provides a living and working integrated community and a hi-tech environment to foster and encourage innovation. That is to say, within DSO, existing companies and cyber security businesses in Dubai are supported by incubation centers, accelerator programs, and venture capitalists.

3.2.3 Dubai TechnoPark

Located at the heart of Dubai’s industrial zone in Jebel Ali, Dubai Techno Park covers a 21 million sq. ft. area. In addition, this Dubai free zone is home to some of the most important high-profile companies which specialize in oil, gas, technology, and other industries. Hence, making room for cybersecurity startups and collaborative opportunities.

3.2.4 Dubai Technology Campus

DTEC is the place where a vast network of advisers, educators, and mentors offer opportunities for pitches, investment, and collaboration. Similarly, the 10,000 sq. ft. facility has an integrated ecosystem of hundreds of SMEs, technology entrepreneurs, and start-ups around the globe.

Further, it hosts a massive range of networking events for engagement collaboration and various improvement programs.

4. What is the step-by-step process to start a cyber security business in Dubai?

As we have shown, there is no question that the cyber security industry in Dubai and the UAE has enormous growth potential. However, opening your cyber security business requires a time-consuming and detailed procedure. If you want a start a business in this field, here are some basic steps:

4.1. Choose your company’s name

Your business name is a fundamental part of the legal process. Unless your organization is a branch office, the name represents the core area of your business. Moreover, you must have in mind that there are conventions regarding names. For instance, it is forbidden to use names including derogatory names to any faith or offensive.

4.2. Determine the jurisdiction

Offshore, Free Zone, and Mainland are the economic jurisdictions or zones where you can start your cyber security business in Dubai. That is to say, each jurisdiction has its own set of regulations that meet specific organizational needs. Thus, choose a jurisdiction for your business based on what you are needing and the type of business you conduct.

4.3. Legal structure

When you are in the process of starting your cyber security business in the UAE; you must choose a legal structure for your company. This provides the foundation for dealing with losses and profits as well as structuring your resources and assets. If you do not outline your legal structure, you cannot obtain a business license.

Let us observe some of the business structures and legal forms available for registration in Dubai:

4.4. Submit all documents

The setup of a business and obtaining a license take place simultaneously. However, the approval and paperwork steps are multi-stage. It is recommended to partner up with a business formation like us, Connect FZ. To set up your cyber security business in Dubai, you will need the following documents:

  • A No Objection Certificate (NOC) if you or your partners are working in a company.
  • A valid tenancy contract for the office space you are using.
  • Attested Memorandum of Association.
  • The application forms.
  • Copy of your passport.
  • A copy of your Emirates ID.

You can get in touch with us if you have any questions about the pre-approval and pre-requisites. We will assist you in the entire process while staying compliant with the employment law of the UAE.

4.5. Process your visa

You can submit applications for your family members as well as your employees while processing your own visa application. Assuming all the provided information is correct, the process is divided into 4 stages:

  1. Obtaining an entry permit for you.
  2. Changing your legal status.
  3. Taking a medical screening test.
  4. Getting your visa stamped and obtaining your Emirates ID.

5. What is the cost of a cyber security license?

When starting your cyber security company in the UAE, you must provide the standard corporate documentation, experience certificates, business plan, individual staff, and managers qualification documents. Nonetheless, being aware of the regulatory requirements and successfully completing the required documentation is both difficult and time-consuming.

On the other hand, starting a cyber security company depends on different factors. This includes visa and license fees, the location of your office as well as personal and insurance costs. However, this type of license ranges from AED 12,000 and AED 30,000.

6. How can we help you set up a cyber security business in the Emirates?

At Connect Free Zone, we provide you with great packages, discounts, and an excellent pricing. Our main objective is to always offer you accessible and innovative services. In this way, you can set up any type of business in the UAE.

Most importantly, we understand how difficult it can become to complete a company formation process; especially if you are on your own. Fortunately, we have the most solid experience and knowledge so you can establish your organization easily.

With us, you can access the best locations for your technological business. At the same time, you will obtain all the benefits the jurisdictions will provide to you. You will be able to compare free zones’ rules, rates, and regulations regarding your company’s PRO services.

Would you like to receive our assistance to start a business in the UAE? If you want to begin your commercial activities as soon as possible while staying complaint, you can call us at +971 43 316 688. You can also email us any time through

Are you currently looking for a job? If you want to access the best opportunities, go to Besides, you can always send your resume to where it will never be stored.

Sanjyam Dhingra

Avatar photoSanjyam DhingraShe is an esteemed Compliance Officer with extensive experience in ensuring corporate adherence to regulatory standards. Her expertise spans a wide range of compliance functions, including regulatory analysis, risk management, and the implementation of compliance programs. She excels in identifying potential compliance issues and developing strategic solutions to mitigate risks.

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