KUALA LUMPUR, Jan 22 ― The Association of Southeast Asian Nations (Asean) member states have emphasised on the importance of strengthening cybersecurity mechanisms as part of the efforts to advance digital connectivity in the region, said Communications and Multimedia Minister Datuk Saifuddin Abdullah.

Saifuddin, who chaired the inaugural Asean Digital Ministers’ Meeting (ADGMIN1), said this includes the need to strengthen laws and regulations to guarantee safety and security of data connection and to curb the exploitation of children and women in the cyberspace as well as cyberbullying.

Saifuddin said strengthening cybersecurity is also one of the key components of the Asean Digital Masterplan 2025, which is contained in one of its eight Desired Outcome.

“If you look at Desired Outcome number three ― the delivery of trusted digital services and the prevention of consumer harm - in many ways include the question on cybersecurity,” he said in a press conference held virtually at the end of the ADGMIN1 here, today.


Saifuddin also said Malaysia is ready to share its expertise on cybersecurity with Asean member states through its Global Accreditation Cybersecurity Education Scheme.

“We have this agency under my ministry called the CyberSecurity Malaysia and they have organised a couple of activities with Asean member states and there is one particular programme called Global Accreditation Cybersecurity Education Scheme.

“This is a programme about certification in building capacity of cybersecurity managers and professionals,” he said.


He also said it is important to strengthen cybersecurity within Asean and Prime Minister Tan Sri Muhyiddin Yassin also put a lot of emphasis on this matter in his keynote address during the opening ceremony of ADGMIN1 yesterday.

To another question, Saifuddin said bringing the internet connectivity to the rural areas is a challenge faced by most of the Asean member states due to its geographical factors.

“But I can see from the discussions, each and every member states are very committed and putting a lot of money into this investment,” he said.

On another development, Saifuddin noted that as a whole, Asean member states had made tremendous advancement in digital connectivity although every member state measures digital speed and connectivity in their respective countries differently. ― Bernama