Leadership Breakfast Roundtable on Regional Cybersecurity Policy in Singapore
Inconsistent and contradictory cybersecurity rules will make it difficult for companies to operate across borders in ASEAN, governments and industry agreed on 20 September. The Cybersecurity Coalition for APAC (CCAPAC), the Cyber Security Agency of Singapore, and the US government, with the support of Access Partnership, gathered to discuss the role of public-private cooperation for cybersecurity on the sidelines of Singapore International Cyber Week.
Government cybersecurity leaders signalled strong support for enhanced regional coordination to combat increasing systemic risks, with government representatives from Australia, Malaysia, New Zealand, the Philippines, Singapore, South Korea, Thailand, and the United States present.
The need for a regional ASEAN and ASEAN-plus approach was reiterated by industry and civil society attendees, including Amazon Web Services, Cisco, BD, Access Partnership, and the leadership of the Global Commission on the Stability of Cyberspace (GCSC).
Capacity building was another key issue discussed, with Singapore’s recent announcement of investment in an ASEAN Cybersecurity Centre of Excellence and the opening of the new ASEAN-Japan Cybersecurity Capacity Building Centre in Bangkok, Thailand on 14 September 2018. Participants were interested in further cooperating to address shortages of professionals with malware and digital forensic skills; noting that this cannot be done without private sector input to identify the specific skills and numbers needed.
During the event, industry representatives provided their technical and business expertise on cybersecurity challenges and highlighted both the benefits of leveraging the cloud and the need for a sectoral approach to cybersecurity, particularly for medical and health technologies.
Governmental representatives and the GSCS welcomed these comments, noting the importance of industry support for capacity building and for a robust regulatory environment. Multistakeholder groups were highlighted as a way to provide input without overwhelming policy-makers with a multitude of voices.
The event concluded with participants agreeing that the next step will be to identify practical solutions to enhance cooperation between countries and effectively leverage multi-stakeholder engagement.
From left-to-right: Md. Shah Nuri Md Zain (Chief Executive, Malaysia National Cyber Security Agency), Meng Chow Kang (AWS), David Koh (Chief Executive, Singapore CSA), Rob Strayer (Deputy Assistant Secretary for Cybers, US Dept of State), Chris Martin (Access Partnership), Rob Suarez (BD), Allan Cabanlong (Assistant Secretary, DICT, Philippines); facing outward in front are Jerrod Hansen (US Embassy Singapore) and Paul Ash (Director of the National Cyber Policy Office, New Zealand)