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Singapore rolls out national cybersecurity strategy

Source: Asia Insurance Review | Nov 2016

Singapore has launched a national cybersecurity strategy which outlines how the city-state will continue to strengthen the resilience of its cybersecurity. A new Cybersecurity Act will be introduced in 2017, to provide a comprehensive legal framework for national cybersecurity. This comes after a year-long consultation process with stakeholders from associations, government, businesses and academic institutions.
 
   Cybersecurity has been earmarked by the government as a key enabler for Singapore’s digitally-enabled economy and society. Launching the new strategy at the opening of the inaugural Singapore International Cyber Week on 10 October, Singapore Prime Minister Lee Hsien Loong said: “Singapore aspires to be a smart nation. But to be one, we must also be a safe nation…we must get cybersecurity right, to capture the benefits of a more connected world.”
Four pillars underpin the new strategy as follows:
 
Building a Resilient Infrastructure
A key focus of the strategy is to ensure that Singapore’s essential services including energy, banking, healthcare and transport are protected. The government will work with key stakeholders to strengthen the resilience of Critical Information Infrastructure (CII) that supports these essential services. It will establish robust and systematic cyber risk management processes, as well as response and recovery plans, across all critical sectors.
 
   Earlier this year, Mr Lee announced that public servants would not have internet on their main work computers in an unprecedented move to boost security. He said that approximately half of Singapore’s public agencies have started doing so, with the rest on track to implement it by mid-2017.
 
Creating a Safer Cyberspace
The strategy outlines efforts by various agencies to combat cybercrime and to enhance Singapore’s standing as a trusted data hub. 
 
Developing a Vibrant Cybersecurity Ecosystem
The Singapore government will collaborate with industry partners and Institutes of Higher Learning to grow the cybersecurity workforce. 
 
   The Government will also partner the private sector and academia to develop technologically-advanced companies, nurture local start-ups, and harness R&D.
 
Strengthening International Partnerships
The strategy also outlines Singapore’s commitment to strong international collaboration for collective global security. The city-state will actively cooperate with the international community, particularly ASEAN, to address transnational cybersecurity and cybercrime issues and facilitate global exchanges on cyber norms, policy and legislation.
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