The world has shifted drastically with the pandemic. With its lingering effects, more people are relying on financial technology with its reliable and contactless transactions to meet their needs. The use of Advanced Analytics and AI in fintech has become critical to ease-of-use and security in the context of AML. Usage of AA and AI allows for risk mitigation as well as cost-efficiency; saving investigators’ time in tracking activity that is seen as a potential threat.
The latest OpenGovLive! Virtual Breakfast Insight on 8 September 2020, looked at how financial institutions from Malaysia can apply real-world AI and advanced analytics applications to ensure a world-class integrated banking system that has comprehensive risk management, efficient fraud anticipation and complete regulatory compliance with an eye on bettering customer experience and improving enterprise profitability.
A comprehensive risk assessment and understanding is a must for financial institutions
OpenGov Asia Group Managing Director and Editor-in-Chief, Mohit Sagar, opened the session by observing that the world has become chaotic and the status quo been disrupted.
In these turbulent times, he stressed it is critical to ask key questions: How do we stay ahead of the curve? How do we keep safe? How do we stay compliant?
These questions become more pertinent and urgent when bad actors are evolving rapidly and becoming increasingly sophisticated.
Being compliant is just the first step. Mere check-box implementation could possibly make organisations more vulnerable as it is a broad, general framework.
Ideally, organisations need to have a comprehensive risk assessment and understanding of their organisation and their context – not an easy nor simple undertaking.
Given the complexity and finesse required, it is best to find the right partners to ease through the process of augmenting a corporate’s existing AML system.
Augmenting and not replacing existing AML capabilities is the priority
After Mohit’s introduction, Managing Director, SAS Malaysia, Cheam Tat Inn, explained that his organisation’s analytics solutions have been used across different parts of the banking landscape.
They have been deployed to enable digital transformation, enhance customer experience, improve risk management and strengthen fraud and security intelligence.
He added that the SAS Solutions optimise and enhance existing AML capabilities and not replace them entirely.
Ahmed Drissi, Anti-money Laundering Lead, APAC, SAS, joined Cheam to give weightage to the need for external expertise. He opined that financial companies need to invest in Machine Learning and AI to automate and speed up the onboarding process.
He showed the delegates a graph that depicted clearly how some regional and tier-1 banks had improved their operational efficiency. Expounding on their proposition, he explained that the SAS Solution had several key capabilities:
- Transaction Monitoring
- Customer Risk Rating/Due Diligence
- Customer screening
- Transaction screening
- AML & CTF Investigation
These key capabilities can be applied to an organisation’s existing AML systems to improve and strengthen its ability to combat financial crimes through advanced analytics.
Entity resolution in the context of AML will help in the reconciliation and gathering of normal multiple data and uncover hidden relationships through the analysis in customer’s attributes. This is important to establish a single view of the customer. It will help investigators have a holistic view of a customer.
Ahmed re-emphasised that SAS’s goal is not to replace existing AML capabilities but to optimise and/or augment them as part of segmentation.
Challenges in AML regulation from an HSBC lens
After Ahmed, Lee Ashmore, Global Head of Anti-Money Laundering Technology & Head of Compliance IT-APAC gave a presentation on the challenges on AML regulation through an HSBC perspective.
Lee explained that customer segmentation models can be complex and can take a long time to develop in HSBC.
He shared that there were problems they encounter when a high number of false positives are flagged while using a rule-based TM that needs to be addressed
Lee was of the opinion that it might be difficult to transition from one system to another in their current situation. Fine-tuning systems are time-consuming and thresholds can be severely impacted by market volatility through external events such as COVID-19.
After these insightful presentations, the virtual insight moved into a time of interaction through OpenGov Asia’s polling session.
On the first question asked the delegates where they were in their current AML journey, close to half (44%) said that they have replaced their current AML solution in the previous year.
While discussing answers, a senior executive from a prominent bank in Malaysia shared that they shared their solution about 2 years ago, but are still facing some challenges including false positives, calibrations etc. He also shared that it is an ongoing journey for them, and they are looking to incorporate AI in their AML solution.
Interestingly, in the last session with Singapore-based delegates, for the same question, 62% answered that they were looking for technology that would complement their existing AML solution.
The second poll question asked if the current AML platform/solution provides real-time screening capabilities. Over 48% confirmed their platforms can only screen transactions by batch while 44% said that their AML platform has real-time screening in place.
A delegate reflected that batch screening is appropriate for more complex non- sanction transactions. But for screening sanctions, it should be done real-time. However, ideally, it would be to have a combination of both which is something new to explore.
The third asked about the main challenges that delegates are facing during the AML investigation process. A majority of them (38%) felt the lack of data/insight around customers, accounts and entities is the main problem.
On this one of the delegates shared an interesting reflection. She shared that the major issue is customer information not being updated. When the information is not updated, the risk profiling and mitigation also turns out to be inaccurate. So even when the claims and transactions are not actually high-risk, they seem suspicious.
On the final question on the extent to which organisations are incorporating AI/ML in their risk and compliance programs, half of our audience (50%) voted that they are still evaluating AI and ML before actually incorporating it.
Ahmed shared that it is good to see that majority of organisations were in different stages of their adoption cycle. They have either already adopted it or are evaluating it to understand its benefits. In the same vein, Ahmed brought the session to a closing where he thanked the delegates for the great insights they had all shared.
He closed by reminding them that AI/ML are not plug-and-play solutions that replace current solutions. They augment existing capabilities and strengthen existing systems. Further, SAS has worked hard to create a way of implementing their solution that can be customised to each organisation’s specific requirements and context.
The entire session, with the deep interaction among delegates and experts, led to an intense time of discovery and learning. Advanced Analytics, AI and AML capabilities can be a great tool in strengthening existing systems to combatting financial cybercrime and fraud – activities that may pose high-risk to customers and that can seriously affect an organisation’s credibility.
The management of critical events is becoming an increasingly important and widespread practice. From significant weather events, natural disasters and global pandemics, critical events create operational disruptions and have an enormous financial impact.
The COVID-19 pandemic is perhaps the aptest example of this. Some nations have buckled under the pressure generated by the economic upheaval and setbacks the virus has caused. Other nations, like Malaysia, have risen to the challenge and have employed technology in innovative and efficient ways.
For example, in March 2020, the Sarawak Multimedia Authority (SMA) rolled out a digital tracking device to curb the spread of Covid-19 in the state. The digital surveillance solution gave the state disaster management committee the “scalable capability” to monitor the disease at all points of entry in Sarawak.
Under the solution, all those entering Sarawak were issued a QR-coded wristband based on two categories: person under investigation (PUI) and 14-day stay home notice. Wearers were required to report their situation twice daily by scanning their wristband’s QR code to submit the information.
Data collated will allow the state disaster management committee to make informed decisions and to conduct random checks on the wearers. The wearers’ location enables the committee to establish hotspots, a key strategy to curb further spread of the disease, the SMA General Manager had said in a statement.
At the time, various tracker systems had been deployed in China, Singapore, South Korea and Hong Kong where the data collected was crucial in managing the shape and evolution of the virus’ spread.
The state disaster management committee had earlier enlisted SMA to develop a digital system to track persons undergoing self-quarantine for Covid-19. Ultimately, this solution will be integrated into the ‘Permission to Enter/Exit’ system to effectively monitor Sarawak’s entry points.
This move resulted in the state, and Malaysia, being lauded for its efforts in combating the virus. On 22 September 2020, the Sarawak State Disaster Management Committee’s (SDMC) utilization of technology to curb the Covid-19 pandemic was recognised as the committee was awarded the Malaysian Technology Excellence Award (MTEA) by Singapore Business Review 2020 in Kuala Lumpur.
SDMC’s initiative for the development of two key applications, namely i-Alerts and enterSarawak, and the seamless integration of both systems was acknowledged by the judging committee from Deloitte Asia Pacific, KPMG Malaysia, BDO, Crowe Growth Consulting as well as Ernst & Young Advisory Services as riding the disruption wave and leading the technological revolution by leveraging on technology as a key catalyst to control the spread of the Covid-19 pandemic in Sarawak.
The award was received by the General Manager of the Sarawak Multimedia Authority (SMA) on behalf of the Sarawak Disaster Management Committee. He stated that the agency aims to be the leader in the Digitalisation of Malaysia; being at the forefront, realising The Right Honourable Chief Minister of Sarawak’s vision of a robust Digital Economy.
As strategised by SMA, the applications, which focus on data interoperability, allows for the harmonised approach of collecting and transmitting data between stakeholders, decision-makers and the public. This empowered the State to channel all relevant information via a single and globally interoperable information structure thus avoiding the unnecessary complexity in systems and improve overall efficiency.
The uniformity of these platform creates speed, systemization and standardization which improves overall efficiency across the entire disaster lifecycle thus allowing enterSarawak to be seamlessly applied across 33 Immigration, Customs, Quarantine and Security centres (ICQS) in Sarawak immediately during MCO creating touchless border security while i- Alerts acts as the Core Integrated Disaster Management Platform for SDMC.
The open standards for the system also ensure enhanced scaling and improved efficiency of the timeliness of the transfer of information. Furthermore, by making full use of existing data in the disaster management sector, i-Alerts can adopt mechanisms that ensure resource verification, findability, accessibility, interoperability, reuse and leverage the growth of existing Government Open Data initiatives.
The Ministry of Electronics and Information Technology (MeitY) and the National Institution for Transforming India (NITI Aayog) will organise a mega virtual summit on artificial intelligence (AI), Responsible AI for Social Empowerment 2020.
RAISE 2020 will be held from 5-9 October. It will be a global meeting of minds to exchange ideas and chart a course for using AI for social transformation, inclusion, and empowerment in areas like healthcare, agriculture, education, and smart mobility, among other sectors.
The summit is a first of its kind, a global meeting of minds on AI to drive India’s vision for digital transformation. The event will witness robust participation from global industry leaders, key opinion makers, government representatives, and academia.
According to a press release, at the summit, delegates and experts in research, policy, and innovation on AI will come together from across the world. Keynote speeches and panel discussions will frame the summit, on cross-sector subjects like leveraging AI for pandemic preparedness, the impetus that innovation places on digitisation, inclusive AI, and partnerships for successful innovation.
The RAISE 2020 Summit will also feature startups working in AI-related fields. Startups chosen through the AI Solution Challenge will showcase their solutions in the AI Startup Pitchfest. This is part of the government’s continuing support to tech entrepreneurs and startups by providing exposure, recognition, and guidance.
Speaking about the Summit, Ajay Prakash Sawhney, the MeitY Secretary, noted that AI has emerged as a catalyst across industries and can play a transformative role in accelerating development. The summit will explore in-depth, the role of AI in accelerating social empowerment. RAISE 2020 has tracks like AI for health, agriculture, education, skilling, mobility, fintech, research, inclusive AI, the future of work, and responsible AI. The summit will serve as a platform for the meeting of some of the best minds in the world on AI.
Home to the world’s third-largest startup ecosystem, elite science and technology institutions like the IITs, robust and ubiquitous digital infrastructure, and millions of newly-minted STEM graduates every year, India is well-positioned to become a global leader in the development of AI, the release claimed.
Industry analysts predict that AI could add up to US$ 957 billion to India’s economy by 2035. The Prime Minister, Narendra Modi, plans to leverage AI for inclusive development, representing the country’s ‘AI for All’ strategy. The country aims to stand out in the international community not just as a leader in AI but also as a model to show the world how to responsibly direct AI for social empowerment.
Amitabh Kant, the CEO of NITI Aayog, explained that from agriculture to fintech and healthcare to infrastructure, AI is a transformative force. India is uniquely positioned to become the AI laboratory of the world and contribute to inclusive development and growth through empowerment. The summit aims to help create a data-rich environment, which is a stepping stone to eventually transform lives globally.
In August, NITI Aayog, in collaboration with the National Association of Software and Service Companies (NASSCOM), launched the ATL AI Step-Up Module for students, which will drive AI education and innovation across the country. The initiative was launched after the AI project, ATL AI Modules by the Atal Innovation Mission.
As OpenGov Asia reported, the AI Step-up Module provides a comprehensive set of learn-it-yourself advanced modules to those who want to expand their knowledge base after becoming familiar with the basics of the AI technology.
The Malaysia Digital Economy Corporation (MDEC) is collaborating with a communications service provider in Malaysia to promote corporate innovation among businesses in Malaysia, from start-ups or large corporations, to stimulate the ecosystem and spur the country’s digital economy.
The partnership was formalised with both parties signing a Memorandum of Understanding detailing the framework for its cooperation. Through the year-long collaboration, the parties will jointly develop mentorships and programmes to provide coaching to start-ups and corporates embarking on their digital transformation journeys.
Additionally, both parties will facilitate events and engagements that will foster a conducive environment for networking and collaboration between start-ups as well as larger corporations to generate business leads for the industry and accelerate corporate innovation.
The Chief Executive Officer of the leading converged solutions provider in Malaysia stated that, in this challenging and increasingly competitive business environment, the company firmly believes that innovation will be a key success factor in re-evaluating business models and digital transformation strategies.
Their collaboration with MDEC is, therefore, an important one as it allows the firm to collectively provide the right tools, support, and resources, to bring together the best of technologies to help businesses to always be ahead in a changing world. The parties will further explore and co-create initiatives to fuel corporate innovation in Malaysia.
Meanwhile, MDEC’s CEO lauded the firm’s proactive stance in supporting organisations to take the digital leap and heighten their readiness for IR4.0. She further encouraged Malaysia-based MNCs to join the effort to build the nation’s digital ecosystem and support local digitally-empowered businesses to grow globally.
The company possess market knowledge, resources, established networks, and the validation that all businesses aspire to attain; tech start-ups possess the agility and novel ideas that corporations value, she said. MDEC aims to harness these complementary strengths to both advance the nation’s digital agenda and foster the creation of local deep-tech solutions that could shape the way the most pressing global issues are solved.
As the first of their joint initiatives, the two parties will be launching a digital Design Thinking workshop for MDEC’s corporate partners in October 2020. The two-week workshop aims to promote the use of Design Thinking as a methodology to deeply understand problem statements of companies and challenge assumptions in an attempt to solve them creatively and innovatively.
According to another article, MDEC and Malaysia’s leading communications provider have a new history of innovative partnerships. The two have been collaborating on several fronts since 2019, with a shared goal of accelerating the digitalisation of the businesses in Malaysia in line with the Government’s digital economy agenda.
Some of the telecom’s key initiatives include the ecosystem development of IoT in May 2019, which saw the launching of the firm’s immensely popular IoT Challenge and the launch of its second installation on 4 September.
MDEC was also a key partner for the firm’s Market Access Day, the largest pitching session that provided a platform for 100 start-ups to showcase their ideas to approximately 70 of Malaysia’s leading corporates, venture capitalists and angel investors, for business matching and networking opportunities.
Recently, the firm was identified as a Technology Solutions Provider by MDEC for the SME Digitalisation Grant under Budget 2020, which enabled Maxis to offer the widest range of connectivity and digital solutions to help SMEs achieve their digitalisation aspirations.
Meanwhile, through its flagship community programme, eKelas, the company is currently working with MDEC to repurpose the latter’s STEM content and develop learning videos for eKelas students. Concurrently, it is supporting MDEC’s various initiatives under its #mydigitalmaker movement via content sharing and capacity building in Computer Science.
An American multinational developer of analytics software has committed to up-skill a minimum of 500 students in analytics across Malaysia by the end of 2020, in response to increased demand for data science expertise. Under the banner of the firm’s Software Certified Young Professionals (SCYP), the program will collaborate with the Malaysia Digital Economy Corporation (MDEC) to help drive the adoption of emerging technologies across the country.
Central to such efforts will be enabling students to work towards the certification in programming, machine learning and visual analytics through e-learning courses, supported by access to online communities and webinars.
The Managing Director of Malaysia at the firm stated that the company has a deep-rooted history in academia. Launching a program to empower Malaysian students with the firm’s analytics knowledge and expertise helps in answering the rising demand for technology professionals in Southeast Asia.
Business organisations need people who can make sense of data, manage and analyse it, build models and determine what information delivers the most value. Students with an analytical skillset will be highly sought after.
Once students have completed the e-learning courses and attended the associated webinars, a certification exam will follow before connections with SAS customers seeking young data science professionals.
Within Southeast Asia, “free or heavily subsidised” online courses are available to undergraduate, postgraduate and PhD students who are enrolled at a university, business school or university college in Malaysia, Indonesia or Vietnam. There are currently three courses available for students in Malaysia and Vietnam, and five courses on offer in Indonesia, spanning data analytics, statistics, machine learning and virtualisation.
The CEO of MDEC stated that the agency’s strategic partnership with the software company aligns perfectly with its commitment to ensuring delivery of technology relevant programmes to Malaysian students and help Malaysians make the digital leap into the era of the Fourth Industrial Revolution.
The agency sees its public-private partnership initiatives such as the tech firm contributing to Malaysia’s overall growth of the data science skills required in the workforce to support the digitally-driven economy, which is also critical to meet the demand of the current and future job market.
Growing demand for tech professionals
OpenGov Asia earlier reported that Malaysians with niche skills in technology have far brighter prospects in 2020 as many sectors are hiring in their push forward with digitalisation. A Malaysia-based consultancy’s 2020 salary survey revealed that job opportunities and higher pay were expected for those in mid to high-level management positions in eight sectors.
Talents with niche skills who are changing jobs, on the other hand, are looking at an increment of up to 30 per cent due to demand outstripping supply, the firm’s Country Manager for Malaysia said in a statement accompanying the survey report.
The survey also encouraged as employers may be more open to hiring job seekers with the necessary tech skills but who may have less industry experience.
Moreover, as Malaysia invests more into its technological infrastructure, the more it will see tech talent flooding into the nation, thereby growing its digital economy and pushing forward its Industry 4.0 goals.
Adoption and convergence of cloud, virtualisation, cybersecurity technologies, etc. have caused a dramatic change in the financial services industry significantly impacting its functioning. Further, most organisations were already on their digital journey when the pandemic hit – forcing a seismic shift in urgency and scope of the transformation.
The OpenGovLive! Virtual Breakfast Insight on 22 September 2020 engaged delegates from the financial services industry across ASEAN to better understand the impact of digital disruption in this sector. The session witnessed overwhelming attendance and engagement from senior digital executives, keen on sharing and learning more about this timely and highly relevant topic.
The pressure to transform digitally should not out innovation on a back seat
The session was opened by Mohit Sagar, Group Managing Director and Editor-in-Chief, OpenGov Asia.
Mohit concurred that the financial sector industry was seriously hit during the pandemic and were, for the most part, reactive in their response.
Before COVID, organisations were working hard balancing different aspects of their business – regulations, stakeholders, customers, employees – in a F2F, physical context. With strict stay-at-home, remote working and quarantine measures in place, almost all fiscal and commercial transaction transitioned online. The need to go digital almost immediately, besides managing the regular aspects of business, has put the financial sector under immense pressure.
Under such pressure, Mohit cautioned delegates, organisations must not hold back on innovation. In fact, the industry should look at the pandemic as an opportunity to pivot – to ramp up digital transformation.
None the less, in this expedient endeavour, operational resilience must be maintained and security strategies must be reassessed. Existing protocols and processes must not only be maintained but need to be strongly augmented – adding new chapters as appropriate and necessary.
Mohit encouraged delegates to prioritise the well-being and happiness of employees as much as that of their customers. In urgent times like these, it is a well-trained, motivated and committed workforce that will help organisations stay afloat and thrive.
In closing, Mohit advised delegates to must partner with the right people who are experts in this field, it if they want to correctly balance the different aspects of their business efficiently and have a smooth transition into the digital world.
Empower and augment employees to achieve operational resilience
Elisha Harrington, Head of Financial Services Innovation, ServiceNow shared her insights with the delegates.
Elisha spoke about operational resilience as a driver of transformation and coordinated delivery of business outcomes. She echoed Mohit’s sentiments about financial institutions being under a lot of pressure as they were pivoting to paradigms that were unknown to them.
They had to deal with technological shortcomings, cybersecurity issues, connectivity gaps, compliance requirements, etc. along with adjusting to remote working. In such an environment, operating at scale necessitates that employees collaborate across teams and work with each other virtually.
Elisha opined that operational resilience comes down to an institution’s ability to absorb shock and set out risk tolerances for those parts of the business that are highly critical to its survival.
The strategy to survive she proposed, and indeed, thrive rests four main pillars: People, Technology, Facilities and Supplies. These pillars need to be in place and need to be consistently and continuously improved.
Additionally, technology and supplier resilience are critical in keeping organisations going. Elisha outlined three major components under this:
- Technology Supply Chain
- IT resilience and Outsource
- Cost of Resilience
Elisha concluded by highlighting the need to transform the risk and controls management across the organisations. To successfully transform, there needs to be integrated risk management which coupled with workflow optimisation will lead to better customer outcomes.
Digitisation is essential to serve customers effectively and efficiently
Kaspar Situmorang, Executive Vice President & Head, Digital Center for excellence at PT Bank Rakyat Indonesia spoke to the audience from a scale of operations perspective. For organisations serving a large number of customers more effectively and satisfactorily, Kasper felt, it is imperative to go digital.
To underscore his position, he then shared that his organisation’s digital transformation strategy that has two major focus points: First is digital business optimisation, that focuses on increasing efficiency and productivity by bringing in new business processes. The second is making the business digital, that includes creating new business models, generating new revenue streams and improving gross margins.
Kaspar stressed that good customer experience in both digitising and digital is their organisation’s top priority. To do that, they utilise AI as to both expand their customer base and better the customer experience.
He listed five critical competencies in which they invest heavily to grow: People with the right customer-centric mindset, Open Innovation Ecosystem, Data-driven organisation, Agile way of working and Scalable, reliable and secure technology
In conclusion, Kaspar shared the transformation framework of his organisation that comprises:
- Digitising core: Digitising their existing services. transactions and business processes
- Digital Ecosystem: Building an ecosystem to offer products and services beyond core business
- New Digital Propositions: Creating and launching an independent greenfield digital bank in Indonesia
He also shared various examples of the products and services under the above three categories to give delegates a better understanding of their work.
After Kaspar’s presentation, it was time for a more interactive and engaging session. The delegates were polled with a series of questions that was the foundation for discussion around the topic.
On the first question regarding major challenges faced by their organisation in operational resilience, a majority of delegates voted for lack of definition for ‘client business Services’ across organisations (30%).
A senior executive from Malaysia shared that it was imperative that the top management, (who grant the budget and the IT personnel in an organization), are aligned in one direction; if they are not aligned then there will be a lot of ambiguity around the business goals and objectives.
On the next question regarding the most important consideration for the future of their organisation, over half (52%) of delegates voted for data-driven decisions, i.e. using insights from big data and advanced analytics in workforce decision making.
A delegate from Singapore shared that he chose this option because he has observed that while there is a lot of data, it is not easy to assimilate and draw insights from it. So that is a journey they need to undertake.
On the final question about the need to do things differently in your organisation, the largest section voted for creating a better digital experience for customers (37%).
A delegate reflected that they chose the above option because it is a changing environment for the customers as well. Due to the pandemic, they want to go more and more digital. They want to avoid coming to the branch physically for things. So, the focus is on creating a better digital experience for customers.
After the polling session, Elisha addressed the audience with closing remarks. She thanked all delegates for their participation in the session.
Elisha concluded that if organisations have a good handle over their system, service health and necessary automation in place, they have the ability to start to innovate the core business services. This allows employees more time to add value to the core rather than spending time resolving simple/routine problems or getting lost in too many fragmented systems. This is the ultimate goal of service excellence.
She signed off by reminding delegates that ServiceNow solutions can assist and support them in attaining this goal and encouraged them to reach out to the ServiceNow team to explore ways they can collaborate.
Universiti Kebangsaan Malaysia (UKM) announced that a strategic partnership has been forged with the National Sports Institute (ISN) to help improve the diet of Malaysian athletes through the development of a mobile application, iDiet Score.
The IDiet Score is a mobile application was designed to help athletes and active individuals monitor their food intake through menu plans devised using Artificial Intelligence (AI).
Going forward the application can be developed is one of the products developed by UKM scholars that can be commercialised relatively soon. It is hoped that the project will wrap up development in December 2020 and then the next grant (which is a marketing grant for commercialisation) can begin to be discussed.
The ceremony was officiated by the Minister of Youth and Sports. Also present was the Deputy Vice-Chancellor for Student Affairs at UKM.
Approximately 50 ISN athletes were involved in research which focused on endurance, rhythmic, strength and other active individuals. These active individuals included people who went routinely to fitness centres or gyms and who were keen on clearly defining their needs. While the application was created with athletes in mind, any tier of active individual can download the app.
A total of eight UKM researchers were involved in the project, six from the Faculty of Health Sciences and two from the Faculty of Technology and Information Science, while two were from ISN. The iDiet Score application was developed by the UKM Information Technology Center appointed as a vendor.
The ISN Chief Executive Officer stated that as a national sports institute, ISN is continually seeking to expand its strategic networks and collaborations holistically through collaborations with various domestic and foreign entities including government and private agencies.
He noted that ISN officially has entered into cooperation through the signing of a Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) with four public universities, namely IIUM, UPM, UKM and UTM. These collaborations will see cooperation in the fields of services, research, sports science, innovation, sports medicine and commercialisation in various fields that are the core business of ISN. The agency is ready to build a balanced relationship with more strategic partners collectively in the future.
According to another article, the National Sports Institute of Malaysia (ISN) and Futurise Sdn Bhd (Futurise) signed a Memorandum of Understanding (MOU) aimed at developing a regulatory framework within the sports market for sports technology and advancements that can potentially allow a new ecosystem to be established.
Futurise is a company under the Ministry of Finance that focuses on innovation, regulation and commercialisation. In collaboration with ISN, the company aims to ensure that there is a continuous effort in developing regulatory frameworks for sports be it the sports technological improvements, new guidelines or policy issues.
There is a huge prospect in the sports market that can be transformed into a potentially lucrative ecosystem in Malaysia, with technological advances, the Futurise CEO stated.
The MOU will see the two parties identify and explore potential collaboration towards building a sustainable business model and pilot innovative solutions within the sports technology space. While Futurise, through the National Regulatory Sandbox (NRS), will work on exploring innovation-friendly regulatory approaches for emerging solutions and business models developed by ISN partners and ecosystem participants, ISN will be looking towards providing expertise in the area of R&D with regards to sports technology and innovation. Currently, Futurise is in a preliminary discussion with one of ISN’s partners to address their regulatory issues.
The Futurise CEO concluded that the sports industry is incredibly diverse. Very shortly, the Malaysian sports market has the opportunity to be an ecosystem that will fuel new markets that attract investors looking to enter the sports investment landscape. The firm aims to contribute to the strengthening of technology innovation in sports for Malaysia and we look forward towards a fruitful partnership with ISN.
The Ministry of Information and Communications (MIC) has launched a campaign to review and remove malware nationwide this year. It aims to enhance the country’s network security.
The campaign intends to reduce the malicious code infection rate by 50%. It also aims to cut the number of Vietnamese IP addresses in ten popular botnets – a collection of internet-connected devices infected by malware that allow hackers to control them – in half.
The National Digital Transformation Program, approved by Prime Minister Nguyen Xuan Phuc in early June 2020, notes that ensuring network safety and security is key to digital transformation. All IT equipment, products, software, information systems, and investment projects have mandatory components on network safety and security. The ministry has clarified cyber safety and security as aprerequisite for e-government development and digital transformation.
According to security firms, malware infection in Vietnam has decreased but remains high when compared to other countries. Statistics showed that the country has about 16 million IPv4 addresses, of which about three million IP addresses are regularly blacklisted by many international organisations, while two million IP addresses are regularly found in botnets.
The campaign will allow people to use malware prevention software for free. A representative from the ministry’s Department of Information Security said the campaign is for businesses and home network systems and equipment. The group accounts for most of the IP addresses. The campaign would also contribute to improving the country’s reliability in e-transactions, thus promoting socio-economic development and contribute to ensuring national defence and security.
The department would work with VNPT, Viettel, CMC, FPT, BKAV, and Kaspersky to implement the campaign. The project would assess ten major botnets that need to be treated with priority, build, and deploy tools on a large scale, whereby users get free downloads to inspect and remove malicious code from their computers.
After the campaign, the department will evaluate results and plan future campaigns accordingly. The campaign has been implemented in all provinces and cities from the local to the central level, through specialised IT units of ministries, branches and localities, state groups and corporations, and commercial banks and financial institutions.
Additionally, it has received support from organisations, corporations, and major security firms such as Kaspersky, Group-IB, FireEye, F-Secure, and ESET. The campaign has been implemented gradually. The ministry hopes it will achieve positive results, contributing to clean malware from Vietnam’s cyberspace. This will help ensure safety for transactions of agencies and enterprises, as the country is accelerating digital transformation towards the development of digital government, digital economy, and digital society.
In August this year, the Department of Information Security recorded 517 cyberattacks on information systems (199 phishing cases, 160 deface attacks and 158 malware attacks), falling 0.77% over the previous month. The number of Vietnamese IP addresses in botnet networks is over 2 million, a decrease of 0.03% compared to July. The number of recorded cyberattacks, warnings, and the number of botnet IP addresses showed a slight decrease in the last three months.
The decrease was due to the department continuing to strengthen the recording, warnings, and instructions on information security. However, cyber attackers have still taken advantage of concerns about the pandemic to increase the spread of malicious code. The number of IP botnets compared to the same period last year was still at a high level. To ensure network security, the department will strengthen the monitoring and active scanning of the country’s cyberspace.