Singapore working to strengthen telecom security

eGov Innovation editors
30 Jan 2019

Singapore telecoms regulator IMDA is working on a new multi-year roadmap to identify next generation cyber-threats and develop the solutions and capabilities needed to secure Singapore’s connectivity infrastructure.

This was announced by Dr. Janil Puthucheary, senior minister of state for communications and information, at the inaugural Infocomm Media Cybersecurity Conference.

To be developed by the newly-formed Telecom Cybersecurity Strategic Committee (TCSC), the first set of recommendations are expected to be published later this year. The roadmap will identify areas for improvement in Singapore’s telecom cybersecurity capabilities, and recommend strategies, policies and initiatives.

Connectivity infrastructure is a key building block for Singapore’s economy. The changing needs of the Digital Economy will require trusted, secure and resilient next-generation connectivity infrastructure, including 5G and narrowband Internet-of-Things (NB-IoT) sensor networks. The roadmap will help the Infocomm Media Development Authority (IMDA) strategically and systematically invest in developing robust cybersecurity capabilities for the telecom sector.

IMDA also announced two additional initiatives to fortify Singapore’s infocomm sector.

The launch of the electronic Know Your Customer (eKYC) implementation guide will provide guidance to the industry on the management of security concerns in their deployment of eKYC solutions, and drive innovation in Singapore’s digital economy. The eKYC guide aims to make it more convenient for consumers to register for mobile services online in a trusted manner by enabling operators to digitally verify mobile services registrations securely without physical face-to-face transactions.

In addition, IMDA launched a public consultation on its cybersecurity guide for Internet of Things (IoT) systems, which seeks to promote best industry practices in mitigating cybersecurity risks for organizations looking to deploy such systems. The IoT cyber security guide aims to help organizations make better purchasing and deployment decisions for IoT systems by taking security designs into consideration.

IMDA has also partnered the National University of Singapore - Centre for Quantum Technologies (CQT) to offer additional workshops and training programs for government agencies and the industry. These will be held in the coming months to build industry capabilities in quantum technologies and Quantum Key Distribution (QKD) trials with local industry players to gain technical understanding on implementation.

“As we look towards deploying the next generation connectivity infrastructure to support Singapore’s Digital Economy, we will also need to be mindful of the increasingly complex and sophisticated cybersecurity risks that we face,” IMDA chief executive Tan Kiat How said.

“IMDA is partnering the industry and international thought leaders to develop a multi-year roadmap that guide our effort in systemically building a trusted, secure and resilient connectivity infrastructure.”

First published in eGov Innovation

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