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The State of Cybersecurity in APAC

News of cyber attacks dominate today’s headlines. No country is safe from malicious cyber actors. In a world where cyber threats are constant, it is important to understand both how governments are addressing cybersecurity challenges and steps they can take to do better.

Today, BSA | The Software Alliance released its first Asia-Pacific (APAC) Cybersecurity Dashboard, an in-depth study of 10 APAC markets and their approaches to cybersecurity. Our goal is to inspire government leaders in each market to prioritize cybersecurity as an issue of national importance. This APAC Dashboard  is a companion to the European Union Cybersecurity Dashboard, released by BSA earlier this year.

The Dashboard’s findings are clear: the 10 markets examined in APAC have been slow to produce comprehensive national cybersecurity strategies and implement the legal frameworks needed for security and critical infrastructure protection. Yet there are tremendous opportunities to improve the systems needed to protect against, prevent, mitigate, and respond to cyber attacks.  Doing so will bolster enterprise, government, and consumer confidence in cutting edge Internet-enabled technologies and services, driving economic growth and productivity, and will reduce the costs and risks associated with growing cyber threats.

BSA examined the cybersecurity policies and practices of Australia, China, India, Indonesia, Japan, South Korea, Malaysia, Singapore, Taiwan, and Vietnam. Each country’s cybersecurity policies were reviewed with specific focus on the legal foundations for cybersecurity, operational capabilities, public-private partnerships, sector-specific cybersecurity plans, and cybersecurity education and awareness.

The Dashboard shows most governments aren’t leveraging the expertise and knowledge of the private sector to improve their approach to cybersecurity. Additionally, several markets impose local standards and testing requirements that are inconsistent with truly international approaches to cybersecurity.

The good news is that all of the markets currently have national computer emergency response teams (CERTs), an important step in ensuring that governments can respond to cyber attacks quickly and effectively. Additionally, almost all of the APAC markets have dedicated significant resources to cybersecurity education, including innovative cybersecurity awareness programs aimed at the general public.

The full study, along with detailed summaries of the findings for all 10 APAC markets, is available at http://www.bsa.org/APACCybersecurity. As national governments update their frameworks and as we collect new information, we intend to update the APAC Cybersecurity Dashboard online to show progress across the relevant areas. We invite any and all interested parties to review the results and contact us with information regarding updates and changes.

Jared Ragland

Author:

Jared Ragland serves as Senior Director, Policy — APAC at BSA | The Software Alliance. Working with BSA members, he develops BSA’s international strategies to open markets and promote innovation and digital trade in important foreign markets in the Asia-Pacific region, including China, India, Indonesia, Japan, Korea, and Vietnam, among others.

Before joining BSA, Ragland served as the US Patent and Trademark Office (USPTO) Intellectual Property Rights (IPR) Attaché in the Shanghai Consulate General. Before that, he served as Director in the Office of Intellectual Property and Innovation in the Office of the US Trade Representative. From September 2005 to November 2007, Ragland served as the Science Policy Advisor to the U.S. Ambassador to APEC in the State Department's Office of Economic Policy in the Bureau of East Asian and Pacific Affairs.

Ragland received a Doctorate in Molecular and Cellular Biology from the University of Washington in 2004, a Bachelor of Science in Biochemistry, and a Bachelor of Arts with a double major in East Asian Studies and Anthropology from the University of Arizona. He is based in BSA's Singapore office.

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