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Singapore launches new Masterplan to enhance cyber security

Nurdianah Md Nur | July 24, 2013
The vision of the new five-year Masterplan is for Singapore to be a trusted and robust infocomm hub by 2018.

information security seminar 2013.
The launch of NCSM2018 was held at the Information Security Seminar 2013 at Marina Bay Sands,Singapore.

In an effort to further secure the republic’s cyber environment, the Singapore government today launched a five-year National Cyber Security Masterplan 2018 (NCSM2018).

Announcing the launch at the Information Security Seminar 2013 was Dr Yaacob Ibrahim, Minister for Communications and Information in Singapore.

According to McAfee’s 2012 State of Security Survey, nearly a quarter of businesses in Singapore did not test their incident response plans or rehearsed incident response plans after a security breach. McAfee’s Digital Assets survey 2013 also found that although seven in 10 Singaporeans were aware of security dangers, they did not have any security software installed on their mobile devices.

Dr Yaacob said: “The Masterplan will enhance the security of Singapore’s critical infocomm infrastructure and address the security of businesses and individuals [… to] create a robust infocomm ecosystem.”

Trusted and robust infocomm hub by 2018
NCSM2018 was developed through a multi-agency effort led by Infocomm Development Authority of Singapore (IDA) under the guidance of the National Infocomm Security Committee (NISC).

The Masterplan will focus on three key areas.

First, NCSM2018 will enhance security and resilience of critical infocomm infrastructure (CII). With the CII Protection Assessment Programme, vulnerabilities and gaps in the CII can be identified and addressed. National cyber security exercises will also continue to be conducted for critical sectors, as well as new cross-sectors exercises, to improve overall resilience of infrastructure and services. For the public sector, the existing Cyber Watch Centre and Threat Assessment Centre will be upgraded for improved detection and analytics capabilities.

Second, efforts to promote infocomm security adoption among end-users and businesses will be amped up through various publicity channels, including online platforms, roadshows and broadcast media. Dr Yaacob said collaborations with industry and trade associations will also take place “to promote cyber security and exchange of threat information.” 

The final key area is to grow the republic’s pool of infocomm security experts. In 2011, IT security specialists only made up “one percent of the total infocomm industry manpower in Singapore”, said Dr Yaacob. By having more cyber security professionals today, the republic will be able to better defend against sophisticated cyber threats. To do so, IDA will be working with Institutes of Higher Learning and industry partners to train and develop more students and professionals in infocomm security.

NCSM2018 succeeds both Infocomm Security Masterplan and Infocomm Security Masterplan 2 that were implemented from 2005 to 2012.

These previous masterplans had contributed to the establishment of a Cyber-Watch Centre, Threat Analysis Centre and the Cyber Security Awareness Alliance to promote infocomm security awareness. The Association of Information Security Professionals was also set up to help develop local infocomm professionals.

The previous masterplans also saw the rollout of the Secure and Resilient Internet Infrastructure Code of Practice, which required designated ISPs to adopt mandatory cyber security measures.


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