Singapore to establish cyber security agency

NetworksAsia staff
NetworksAsia

The Singapore government is setting up a Cyber Security Agency (CSA) to provide dedicated and centralized oversight of national cyber security functions.

The CSA replaces the Singapore Infocomm Technology Security Authority (SITSA) which was set up on 1 Oct 2009 to safeguard Singapore against IT security threats.

SITSA has been monitoring 10 sectors: Government, infocomm energy (power), land transport, maritime, civil aviation, water, security and emergency, health, banking and finance; and will be subsumed into the CSA, together with the Singapore Computer Emergency Response Team, which deals with cyber security bodies outside Singapore.

To launch on 1 April 2015, the CSA, formed under the aegis of the Prime Minister’s Office, will consolidate and build upon the government’s cyber security capabilities, including those currently residing in MHA and IDA, and focus on national cyber security.

These include strategy and policy development, cyber security operations, industry development and outreach. It will also work closely with the private sector to develop Singapore’s cyber security eco-system.

Dr Yaacob Ibrahim, Minister for Communications and Information, will be appointed as the Minister-in-charge of Cyber Security.

David Koh, Deputy Secretary (Technology) at the Ministry of Defence (MINDEF), has been appointed as the Chief Executive (Designate) of the CSA on 1 January 2015, and as Chief Executive, CSA from 1 April 2015.

Koh will assume his CSA and MINDEF appointments concurrently.

The efforts by the Singapore Government come in the wake of a spate of cyberattacks in the last couple of years that targeted government websites, including that of the Prime Minister's Office by hacktivist group Anonymous, as well as a security breach that affected 1,560 SingPass accounts used to access e-government services.

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