On 3rd April 2022, Germany’s Nordex Group, which, along with its subsidiaries, develops, manufactures and distributes power systems, was struck by a cyber security incident and was forced to shut down its IT systems across multiple locations and business units to contain the issue. This incident merely serves to reinforce the point that cyber security is more important now than ever before. In this day and age, companies are battling a plethora of online threats as cyber criminals are growing increasingly sophisticated in their tactics.
In recognition of this, on 29th March 2022, the Cyber Security Agency of Singapore (CSA) has launched a new cyber security certification programme in a bid to encourage more companies to better secure their cyber security defences.
This programme will recognise enterprises that have adopted and implemented good cyber security practices. It comprises two cyber security marks: Cyber Essentials, which recognises enterprises that have implemented cyber hygiene measures; and Cyber Trust, which is a mark of distinction recognising enterprises with comprehensive cyber security measures and practices. The former is targeted at Small and Medium Enterprises (SMEs) with limited IT and/or cyber security expertise or resources, whilst the latter targets larger or more digitalised enterprises such as Multinational Corporations (MNCs) with higher digital risk levels.
As Mr. David Koh, Chief Executive of CSA, notes, this certification provides greater assurance to customers and ‘reflects the company’s commitment to ensure that they remain cyber-secure, giving them an edge over their competitors’.
Moreover, CSA and the Singapore Standards Council (SSC) is currently developing a Technical Reference (TR) on Tiered Cybersecurity Standards for Enterprises to support the certification scheme. Expected to be published in the second quarter of 2022, the TR will furnish companies with tiered cybersecurity measures to address the different risk profiles of enterprises.
CSA’s recent move comes as no surprise given the increasing number of high profile cyber attacks plaguing companies recently. Concurrently, many have noted that demand continues to rise for cybersecurity professionals, especially in these pandemic times. This is in part fueled by the exponential growth the industry is enjoying, where Fortune Business Insights predicts that the global cybersecurity market is expected to grow from US$165.78 billion (S$223.22 billion) in 2021 to US$366.10 billion by 2028.
Moreover, most companies appear to have understaffed cybersecurity groups, with 62% of professionals considering their group somewhat or significantly understaffed, according to a report published in March 2022 by the IT industry association ISACA. As a result, companies are now growing increasingly flexible in their job requirements when hiring cyber security staff.
Nonetheless, is relaxing hiring guidelines truly the best way moving forward? This runs the risk of engaging less-than-experienced staff who are unable to adequately secure your firm’s online defences and ward off cybersecurity threats.
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