Marcos admin urged to focus on cybersecurity training, education

Warren De Guzman, ABS-CBN News

Posted at Aug 29 2022 02:56 PM

MANILA - President Ferdinand Bongbong Marcos Jr should focus on cybersecurity training and education as daily smishing, phishing and other cyber attacks rise, a technology rights group said Monday.

Educating the public as well as upgrading professional skills on safety and cybersecurity should be pushed instead of proposals to revive SIM-card registration which was earlier vetoed by former President Rodrigo Duterte.

The group Democracy.net.ph submitted Monday a new Philippine Digital transformation Agenda document to the office of President Ferdinand Marcos Jr, seeking to improve proposals sent to the former Duterte administration.

"The PBBM administration has the enviable and unique position of having an opportunity to jumpstart the Philippine ICT ecosystem," the groups said using the popular moniker BBM or Bongbong Marcos to refer to the president. 

"As such, the PBBM administration should take advantage of this opportunity, and ensure that in the next six years of the administration ICT reform initiatives that will promote rights, governance, development, and security in the ICT space will be pushed," the group said. 

It also pushed for voluntary SIM card registration for specific individual use, instead of mandatory registration.

In terms of connectivity which has improved in terms of speed, democracy.net.ph said internet penetration could be improved since only about 7 out of every 100 inhabitants have access to fixed broadband in 2020 from 3 out of 100 in 2016.

Mobile broadband per 100 inhabitants was at 64 in 2020 from 55 in 2016.

Proposals submitted to the Marcos admin include:

• Issue an Executive Order mandating that government agencies adopt minimum cybersecurity standards, designating the DICT and the Office of the Executive Secretary (ES) to be the point agencies to ensure effective implementation
• Prioritize a National Cybersecurity and Information Security Act (NCISA) as a priority legislative measure of the administration 
• Establish a National Cybersecurity Commission (NCyC) as an attached agency of the DICT to pursue the cybersecurity protection of the Philippines
• Provide government aid in the education and training of more IT and cybersecurity professionals
• Establish Cybersecurity Centers of Excellence across the country
• Mandate information sharing agreements between banking and financial institutions and telecoms companies

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