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Security for the age of disruption

Dave West, Chief Technology Officer, Asia Pacific, Japan & China, Cisco | Oct. 25, 2016
The most important question business leaders can ask themselves is not what kind of cybersecurity solutions their organisations need, but what are they going to do differently.

This vendor-written piece has been edited by Executive Networks Media to eliminate product promotion, but readers should note it will likely favour the submitter's approach.

October is Cyber Security Awareness Month in the United States and here in Singapore, we also saw many issues discussed during the Singapore International Cybersecurity Week (SICW). In a fast-evolving Internet of Things (IoT) landscape where more than 50 billion devices are expected to be connected to the web by 2020, cybersecurity becomes an essential enabler for life and business in a Smart Nation such as Singapore.

The desire to build a resilient national infrastructure and a trusted cyber environment for individuals, organisations and transactions is key in helping Singapore maintain its edge amidst digital disruption across the region, something we believe the framework from the new Cybersecurity Act in 2017 will help ensure.

In this digitally pervasive world, organisations aren't the only one innovating-cyber criminals have become more advanced, too. The most important question business leaders can ask themselves is not what kind of cybersecurity solutions their organisations need, but what are they going to do differently.

A threat-centric architectural approach to cybersecurity, because it allows intelligent solutions that "see it once, stop it everywhere". This is especially important to the mobile, distributed nature of a Smart Nation. Worldwide, we are already connecting 30 million new devices to the Internet every single week.

The Cisco 2016 Annual Security Report revealed that only 45 percent of organisations worldwide are confident in their security posture as today's malicious campaigns are more sophisticated, bold and resilient. Moving forward, we welcome the adoption of robust security protocols, as security becomes an essential pillar and enabler of a digital society and economy.

Security in the FSI sector
Security professionals in the financial services sector need to adapt faster than almost any other organisation, as online criminals are constantly targeting this industry. The stakes are high. In 2015, the average cost of a successful data breach was US$3.79 million, according to the Ponemon Institute. Yet, we found that financial services firms are less likely to use cloud-based security tools than firms in other industries. Our survey shows that 28 percent of the organisations in other industries use cloud-based vulnerability scanning, compared with only 18 percent of financial services businesses.

In Singapore, where the e-commerce market is expected to be worth US$5.4 billion (S$7.46 billion) by 2025, fraud and cybercrimes can considerably undermine the economic growth throughout ASEAN. Considering the high stake in this industry, financial services security professionals should look at security strategy beyond fraud prevention-for example, more regular vulnerability scanning and penetration testing-to combat the increasingly sophisticated cases of fraud.  

 

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