Singapore SMEs Most at Risk of Data Breach
Association Chief Says SMEs Are Vulnerable
Recently, SingHealth’s IT system was hit by one of the biggest security breaches in the history of the country. According to Kurt Wee, President of the Association of Small and Medium Enterprises, many of Singapore’s small and medium enterprises (SMEs) are vulnerable to similar breaches occurring.
SMEs have fallen prey to a form of malicious software or malware which is known as ransomware. Ransomware denies the accounts which have been infected access to their accounts and the data within until the demanded for ransom has been paid. SMEs which have been victims are especially those that do not have a form of active defence mechanism in place.
Companies who possess high-value intellectual property, along with large financial databases or even electronic installation contractors and credit card transaction processing firms are the ones which are at risk.
SingHealth’s data breach is considered one of the most serious breaches of personal data in the history of Singapore, and experts are cautioning SMEs to increase their endpoint security. Endpoint security is a device which connects to the organization’s network (desktops, tablets and servers included).
Mr Wee emphasised that the antivirus protection, software of firewalls which SMEs may currently already have in place are likely not enough, as cyber security threats will only increase, with digital transformation driving more companies and businesses towards the cloud.
The option to delink full Internet access to employees is not a viable option because of the significant overhead cost and loss of productivity, even though it minimizes the possibility of cyber-attacks. Instead, organizations should consider solutions which provide end-to-end security of various platforms, such as web, email or documents at any give moment.
Singapore’s financial sector is a prime target because of the large US and European financial institutions which have network operations centres in the country.