February 24, 2024

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Singapore Explores Measures to Strengthen Financial Sector’s Cybersecurity 

The Monetary Authority of Singapore (MAS) has reached out to cybersecurity experts to explore ways to prepare the country’s financial sector for technology risks in increasingly hostile cyberspace.

During the MAS Cyber Security Advisory Panel’s (CSAP) sixth annual meeting, officials stressed that financial institutions (FIs) should develop efficient and decisive responses to new cyber threats. The panel emphasised the need for greater cross-border cooperation; efficient information exchange and more joint exercises to test cyber responses.

It suggested adopting a holistic approach to dealing with digital banking scams. For FIs to strengthen the security of digital banking services, the panel recommended:

  • verifying and restricting the device from which a customer can access digital banking services
  • using biometrics as an additional form factor to authenticate high-risk transactions
  • leveraging artificial intelligence (AI) and machine learning (ML) for real-time fraud monitoring

The panel also discussed mitigating cybersecurity risks related to the increasing use of distributed ledger technology (DLT). Although DLT related security solutions are still nascent, recent cyberattacks on DLT platforms emphasise the need for FIs to monitor for new modes of attacks and upgrade security controls to protect their DLT-based services, the panel said.

The country’s financial sector must also prepare for emerging risks associated with quantum computing. FIs should monitor the development of international standards on post-quantum cryptography and learn to identify weaker cryptographic solutions.

The panel also explored how FIs can manage concentration risks associated with critical third-party service providers. It called for the harmonisation of cyber resilience standards globally and for financial authorities to work together to engage public cloud service providers on their risk management controls and practices.

The meeting was a two-day event during which the CSAP held discussions with major FIs in the country. Participants of the CSAP meeting included representatives from the Cyber Security Agency of Singapore, Defence Science and Technology Agency, the Home Team Science and Technology Agency, and the Infocomm Media Development Authority.

In September, the country launched the Financial Services Industry Transformation Map (ITM) 2025. It lays out the growth strategies for Singapore to become a premier international financial hub in Asia, connecting global markets, supporting Asia’s development, and serving the Singapore economy.

Earlier The Monetary Authority of Singapore published two consultation papers proposing regulatory measures to reduce the risk of consumer harm from cryptocurrency trading and to support the development of stablecoins as a credible medium of exchange in the digital asset ecosystem. These measures will be part of the Payment Services Act.

Singapore aspires to be Asia’s philanthropic hub by developing impact monitoring tools, philanthropy advisory competencies, and novel philanthropy models. MAS forecasts that the financial sector will increase by 4% to 5% per year between 2021 and 2025, creating 3,000-4,000 net jobs per year. It will collaborate with the financial industry to strengthen skills in asset classes where Singapore plays an important regional or global role.

The ITM includes five main strategies: strengthening asset classes, digitising financial infrastructure, catalysing Asia’s net-zero transition, shaping the future of financial networks, and cultivating a competent and adaptive workforce.

By anchoring new FX platforms and liquidity takers, MAS hopes to widen and deepen the electronic foreign exchange (FX) trading ecosystem. Further, it will catalyse insurance risk advice and alternative risk transfer solutions for Asia, address pandemic, climate, and cyber threats, and encourage capital market engagement in risk financing.

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Qlik’s vision is a data-literate world, where everyone can use data and analytics to improve decision-making and solve their most challenging problems. A private company, Qlik offers real-time data integration and analytics solutions, powered by Qlik Cloud, to close the gaps between data, insights and action. By transforming data into Active Intelligence, businesses can drive better decisions, improve revenue and profitability, and optimize customer relationships. Qlik serves more than 38,000 active customers in over 100 countries.

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CTC Global Singapore, a premier end-to-end IT solutions provider, is a fully owned subsidiary of ITOCHU Techno-Solutions Corporation (CTC) and ITOCHU Corporation.

Since 1972, CTC has established itself as one of the country’s top IT solutions providers. With 50 years of experience, headed by an experienced management team and staffed by over 200 qualified IT professionals, we support organizations with integrated IT solutions expertise in Autonomous IT, Cyber Security, Digital Transformation, Enterprise Cloud Infrastructure, Workplace Modernization and Professional Services.

Well-known for our strengths in system integration and consultation, CTC Global proves to be the preferred IT outsourcing destination for organizations all over Singapore today.

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Planview has one mission: to build the future of connected work. Our solutions enable organizations to connect the business from ideas to impact, empowering companies to accelerate the achievement of what matters most. Planview’s full spectrum of Portfolio Management and Work Management solutions creates an organizational focus on the strategic outcomes that matter and empowers teams to deliver their best work, no matter how they work. The comprehensive Planview platform and enterprise success model enables customers to deliver innovative, competitive products, services, and customer experiences. Headquartered in Austin, Texas, with locations around the world, Planview has more than 1,300 employees supporting 4,500 customers and 2.6 million users worldwide. For more information, visit www.planview.com.

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SIRIM is a premier industrial research and technology organisation in Malaysia, wholly-owned by the Minister​ of Finance Incorporated. With over forty years of experience and expertise, SIRIM is mandated as the machinery for research and technology development, and the national champion of quality. SIRIM has always played a major role in the development of the country’s private sector. By tapping into our expertise and knowledge base, we focus on developing new technologies and improvements in the manufacturing, technology and services sectors. We nurture Small Medium Enterprises (SME) growth with solutions for technology penetration and upgrading, making it an ideal technology partner for SMEs.

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HashiCorp provides infrastructure automation software for multi-cloud environments, enabling enterprises to unlock a common cloud operating model to provision, secure, connect, and run any application on any infrastructure. HashiCorp tools allow organizations to deliver applications faster by helping enterprises transition from manual processes and ITIL practices to self-service automation and DevOps practices. 

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IBM is a leading global hybrid cloud and AI, and business services provider. We help clients in more than 175 countries capitalize on insights from their data, streamline business processes, reduce costs and gain the competitive edge in their industries. Nearly 3,000 government and corporate entities in critical infrastructure areas such as financial services, telecommunications and healthcare rely on IBM’s hybrid cloud platform and Red Hat OpenShift to affect their digital transformations quickly, efficiently and securely. IBM’s breakthrough innovations in AI, quantum computing, industry-specific cloud solutions and business services deliver open and flexible options to our clients. All of this is backed by IBM’s legendary commitment to trust, transparency, responsibility, inclusivity and service.

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