Work from home, but stay cyber-safe, ST Editorial News & Top Stories

The technology that enables people to work from home (WFH) can also be a handicap, as a day-long telco outage last week highlighted. Some 3 per cent of subscribers to Singtel’s fibre broadband service were affected and customers resorted to using mobile data to connect online.

Much attention has been given to the fate of hard infrastructure such as office buildings and business districts in the wake of the pandemic. But software, and its supporting infrastructure, requires serious attention too. Beyond building a sturdy infrastructure that can reliably support Internet traffic, security is becoming another urgent issue. The WFH trend has fuelled hacker attacks. A recent report noted that nearly seven in 10 organisations experienced attacks serious enough to report to regulators or to call in an incident response team. This is in line with the global trend of eight in 10. Another survey last year found that about six in 10 organisations here reported at least a 25 per cent increase in cyber threats since the pandemic began. That survey also found that Singapore organisations had more breaches on average, 3.3, versus the global average of 2.35. The leading cause was a weakness in processes, such as not deploying software patches regularly. Digital-savvy Singapore made the largest shift to remote working in the Asia- Pacific, which makes tackling cyber security a priority as WFH becomes the new normal.

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