Marcos gov’t urged to beef up local cybersecurity workforce

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The Marcos administration has been urged to step up initiatives that support the development of a local cyber-security workforce given the growing need for digital protection with greater use of digital platforms.

AJ Dumanhug, CEO of cybersecurity firm Secuna, told the Inquirer that the government could tie up with more companies with the necessary expertise in developing related programs.

“As for the government, it should support interagency cyber workforce initiatives by partnering with public and private stakeholders and building nationally shared resources,” he said.

“They could engage with leading cybersecurity firms and build a platform where they could share best practices and lessons learned with local and international partners who want to leverage national cybersecurity policies,” he added.

The need to develop a local talent pool is considered crucial given the country’s labor shortage and skills shortage, Dumanhug pointed out.

He explained that young talent usually opts to work in large tech firms a few years after training in government jobs.

“Better cooperation between technology companies and the government is much needed. Get the youth interested in adopting the cyber security skills program and encourage the existing ones to provide services in the country and outside the country but from here,” said a Secuna official.

Dumanhug also highlighted the need to strengthen the cybersecurity workforce amid growing cyber threats during the pandemic.

Last year, Kaspersky blocked over 1.3 million phishing emails in the Philippines, which was about 11 percent of the more than 11 million phishing emails detected in Southeast Asia.

Kaspersky noted that working remotely amid the pandemic has given digital fraudsters more opportunities to launch their phishing attacks, highlighting business email compromise (BEC) as one of the “rising trends”.

A BEC attack, Kaspersky explained, refers to fraudulent activity in which cyber hackers pretend to be official representatives of a company. They gain the victim’s trust to convince them to provide personal and even company information. INQ

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