What it takes to improve Singapore’s cybersecurity posture

The government needs to better safeguard public data to enable citizens to continue sharing their data in exchange for services, says Chai Chin Loon, Senior Director of Cyber Security Group, GovTech Singapore.

By Kareyst Lin
Nov. 28, 2016

Secondly, it is not easy to get people to understand that they are truly the weakest link. Cybersecurity is very much dependent on the end user as the last line of defense after a malicious email or software manages to get past the system's initial defenses. It is therefore important that end users are aware of cybersecurity matters, something which is not always on the back of people's minds, Chin asserted.

Last but not least, it is crucial to create an ecosystem. This can be a challenging task, due to the large number of agencies and stakeholders within the government. "Piecemeal security or agency-level arrangements do not make our networks safer, because an attacker can still enter the network via a weaker agency," explained Chin. This would mean that the strength of the network security is only as strong as the weakest agency.

Upcoming IT security initiatives for the Singapore government

GovTech has been developing cybersecurity policies and setting governance standards within the government's digital infrastructure, platforms, and services. The agency will continue to ensure the robustness of their systems.

GovTech will also calibrate the systems and policies in accordance to the threat environment. 

To increase end user awareness, GovTech will continue to work with stakeholders and public agencies.

For example, the agency worked with the Cyber Security Agency to organise the first Smart Nation IoT Security conference in October 2016 to identify cybersecurity challenges and discuss solutions to build a secure and resilient Smart Nation. This helps to enable more co-creation with the stakeholders.

GovTech also recently ran the inaugural Cyber Safe Cyber Ready seminar. It aims to open up discussion among public officers on the cyber landscape and the role each individual plays in our cyber defense. 

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