PUTRAJAYA, Jan 2 — With the emergence of new technologies and the increasing risk of cyber threats, the government needs to carry out regular security audits on the central database system (Padu), said CyberSecurity Malaysia (CSM) chief executive officer Datuk Amirudin Abdul Wahab.

“The more we are connected, the more we are exposed. The security of a system at present does not automatically ensure its safety in the forthcoming five or six months.

“As such, we must conduct security audits periodically to ensure the safety of the database,” he said when speaking as a panelist at the ’Driving Transition Through Padu’ Forum here today.

Other panelists included Malaysian Administrative Modernisation and Management Planning Unit (Mampu) deputy director (ICT) Dr Fazidah Abu Bakar and University of Malaya Social Wellbeing Research Centre director Prof. Datuk Dr Norma Mansor.

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Amirudin said that CSM would play a strategic role in conducting security assessments on Padu, covering both the network of databases and Padu hosts.

He said though technology has changed the way users do business and offers opportunities for continuous access to new applications, the flexibility introduces risks and cyber security threats.

Meanwhile, Norma said that Padu is poised to be a transformative force in the country; hence, it is crucial to regularly update the data within it to prevent it from becoming stagnant.

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Regular updating would make data integration more effective while avoiding duplication of information from various departments, she said.

“We aim to avoid situations where deceased individuals remain listed in Padu data and continue receiving assistance. Similarly, we want to prevent instances where one person receives wheelchair aid from multiple entities simultaneously,” she said

In addition, she said the effectiveness of Padu relies on the proactive initiatives of each programme owner, including the National Registration Department, the religious department, and the zakat board, to consistently channel assistance to those in need.

“Otherwise, Padu merely serves as a repository of data, and those in need of assistance will unfortunately remain overlooked,” she said.

Padu is a comprehensive database that integrates microdata from various government agencies. It was entirely developed by civil servants from three main agencies: the Ministry of Economy, the Department of Statistics (DOSM), and Mampu and the development process also involved collaboration with various other agencies. — Bernama