Published on November 9, 2023, 3:48 am

The cybersecurity landscape in Singapore has seen significant changes over the past year, as highlighted by the 2021 ISACA-Frost & Sullivan Survey. The survey revealed that 63% of respondent organizations increased their adoption of cloud technologies during the pandemic compared to previous years. While there is a general perception that cybersecurity has improved, senior management remains concerned about cyber risk issues.

To delve deeper into these findings, Richard Wong, Senior Vice President, Global Head of Security Advisory at Frost and Sullivan, joined Steven Sim, President of ISACA Singapore Chapter, for a discussion on the survey’s results. They explored the trends and challenges faced by Singapore enterprises in terms of cybersecurity, offering valuable insights for security practitioners.

One key topic discussed was the collaboration between ISACA Singapore and Frost & Sullivan. Steven Sim shared that this research initiative has been running for four years and serves as a valuable reference for members when determining their work plans and budgets. It has also caught the attention of other chapters within the ISACA network, such as Malaysia.

Richard Wong provided an overview of the survey specifications and highlighted that the respondents were primarily key decision-makers from larger enterprises in Singapore with cybersecurity and audit backgrounds. These individuals possess extensive experience and knowledge about emerging trends, issues, and challenges in the cybersecurity space.

When discussing the current top trends in Singapore post-pandemic, Steven Sim noted an increase in software supply chain risks impacting digital trust. Many organizations are focusing on refining their phishing simulation exercises to mitigate this risk effectively.

In terms of overall risk levels compared to previous years and global standards, Richard Wong pointed out that Singapore faces higher risks due to its developed infrastructure and extensive connectivity. As enterprises expand and connect more devices to their networks, they become more vulnerable to cyber attacks. The survey revealed that 2% more enterprises were at risk compared to prior years.

Addressing these risks requires robust risk governance frameworks that go beyond compliance-based cultures. Steven Sim emphasized the importance of adopting a resilient-by-design approach and identifying potential concentration risks during threat modeling. Additionally, organizations should focus on reducing the mean time to detect compromises and responding to incidents effectively.

Both Richard Wong and Steven Sim stressed the critical role of risk communication and continuous education. It is essential to educate end-users, especially senior executives, on cybersecurity best practices. Enterprises should protect and monitor every device at the enterprise level while identifying and addressing any gaps over time.

To foster best practices and effective risk governance, joining communities like ISACA and information-sharing centers like ISAC can be highly beneficial. These platforms facilitate intelligence sharing, cross-pollination of ideas, and provide support for enterprises in detecting, responding to, containing, and recovering from breaches.

In conclusion, as Singapore’s cybersecurity landscape continues to evolve, it is crucial for organizations to prioritize risk governance frameworks and stay vigilant against emerging threats. By adopting resilient-by-design approaches, fostering continuous education, and participating in information-sharing communities like ISACA, enterprises can bolster their cybersecurity preparedness for 2023 and beyond.

(This article is based on “PodChats for FutureCISO: Calibrating cybersecurity preparedness for 2023” by FutureCIO)


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