Cybercrime cases are increasing across the world – and Singapore is no exception. A news report in late 2022 cited the Cyber Security Agency of Singapore as saying the number of ransomware attacks in the republic shot up 54% from 2020 to 2021, and stated that in 2021, 137 Singaporean firms were attacked by ransomware, with hackers demanding payment to unlock the firms’ digital systems.1
This is just one example of the cyber threats that have occurred in recent years. Now, cyber threats are becoming increasingly sophisticated and widespread, making awareness of cybersecurity a necessity.
Threats to Cybersecurity
Cybersecurity is the practice of protecting systems, networks, and data from unauthorised access, use, disclosure, disruption, modification, or destruction.2 It is crucial for businesses and individuals alike, and any threats to it can result in significant harm. There are many different types of cyber threats, including:
If unauthorised individuals gain access to a computer system or network, they can steal data, install malware, or disrupt operations.
A type of social engineering attack, phishing involves an attacker sending a fraudulent email or message that appears to be from a legitimate source. The goal is to trick the recipient into clicking on a malicious link or providing sensitive information.
Malware is software designed to harm a computer system or network. This can include viruses, worms, Trojan horses, and ransomware.
A breach happens when sensitive data, such as customer information or intellectual property, is stolen or exposed. Data breaches can have a devastating impact on businesses, as they can lead to financial losses, reputational damage, and legal liability.
There are more types of cyberattacks that can threaten systems and network security. Active steps in enforcing cybersecurity, such as penetration testing and the deployment of antivirus software, have become a must to ensure information security.
How to Ensure Cybersecurity?
As we rely more and more on digital and online services, such as artificial intelligence, social media, and cloud computing, there are even more reasons why cybersecurity is crucial.3 Here are some benefits of cybersecurity:
1. Protect sensitive information
Businesses and individuals hold a great deal of sensitive information, such as customer data, financial information, and intellectual property. The unauthorised access, use, or disclosure of that information can lead to identity theft, financial fraud, or scams. In a worst-case scenario, it can even put national security at risk.
2. Prevent financial losses
The financial losses from cyber attacks can be significant. According to a report by Statista, global cybercrime costs are expected to reach USD23.84 trillion by 2027.4 For individuals, having sensitive data stolen could mean having their credit card numbers, bank account details, passwords, and intellectual property sold on the black market. For businesses, it can cause disastrous business interruptions, especially for small organisations.
3. Protect reputation
A good cybersecurity system protects a business and safeguards trust in the company. If the trust of customers or employees is broken due to security breaches, it might be difficult to recover.
4. Comply with regulations
Many businesses are subject to regulations that require them to protect sensitive information. For example, Singapore’s Personal Data Protection Act (PDPA) requires businesses and organisations to protect users’ data.5 Not complying with this can result in fines and penalties.
5. Gain a competitive advantage
Having a strong cybersecurity system not only prevents potential disruptions, but also instils confidence in both customers and investors. It can even foster a safe environment for business innovation,6 as your intellectual property is properly guarded.
Become a Digital Defender Today
As technology advances and e-services grow, the threats of cyber criminals cannot be taken lightly. It is increasingly crucial to stay up-to-date and understand cybersecurity as a defence against these attacks.
The Graduate Certificate in Cybersecurity Management (E-Learning) programme offered by Singapore Institute of Management helps you develop critical cybersecurity skills and understanding. This 8-month part-time programme covers key modules, including Data Privacy, Data Ethics and Governance; Cybersecurity Analytics and Insights; and, Emerging Technologies, to propel your career in cybersecurity forward.
To learn more about this 100% online course, schedule a quick 15-minute chat with our Student Advisors today.