RIYADH: The swift response by Tadawul officials to a technical glitch that temporarily suspended trading on the stock exchange on Wednesday helped to reduce the impact on traders, experts said.
On Wednesday morning, at 10:56 a.m., Tadawul announced on its official website that it had suspended trading “due to an unexpected technical issue out of the company’s control” and that the team was “working on rectifying the issue as soon as possible.”
The bourse later issued a follow up announcement at 12:11 p.m. that the “technical issue has been resolved and trading services are now functioning normally,” adding that the exchange would “take all necessary measures to ensure market efficiency and fairness.” Argaam reported that trading activities started functioning normally at 1:00 pm.
Thamer Al-Saeed, CEO at Mad’a Investment, said the Saudi stock market would persevere after the glitch, as it was only an isolated incident, and Tadawul officials reacted quickly to rectify the problem. Al-Saeed also pointed out that the Saudi stock market is included within the global indexes, which played a role in reducing the impact the issue had on trading.
Eng. Abdullah Al-Osaili, an information technology expert, said the main causes could be related to an interruption of the communications network linking the system with the outside world, a power outage or other hardware failures. Causes could also include software and operating system malfunctions or even security attacks and viruses.
Al-Osaili, who was the director of the Hafiz Program, one of the largest automated programs in the Kingdom, said in order to avoid outages in sensitive systems, which could cost millions or endanger lives, owners of such systems needed to have robust contingency plans to ensure business continuity.
Al-Osaili said those in charge of such centers should continuously test and evaluate their systems in order to ensure they were ready in case of any crisis. He said global companies rely heavily on electronic systems, which is why major companies like Google, Amazon and Microsoft have centers around the world, and some even at sea, so that if a system at a center went down, another system elsewhere could kick in.