Committee calls for reinforcement of measures against cyberattacks

The Cybersecurity Committee has called for further attention to and reinforcement of existing measures to protect Macau and China against cyberattacks, according to committee members who deliberated at the only plenary meeting this year, which took place Friday.

Presided over by the Chief Executive (CE) Ho Iat Seng, the committee has reviewed the overall report for 2021 and discussed the current state of local cybersecurity and challenges and future initiatives in that area.

At the meeting, Ho remarked again that the global cybersecurity situation has become increasingly severe and that the international security landscape has entered a new period of turbulence, with several hacking activities becoming more prevalent.

“Since last year, government agencies and private companies around the world have continued to be threatened by serious cyberattacks, further highlighting the need to maintain cybersecurity,” Ho said. He added that “maintaining cybersecurity is at the forefront of safeguarding national security and in the current complex internal and external security landscape.”

The CE also said all government departments must continuously strengthen awareness and the state of urgency, as well as establish a mechanism to  prepare “for the worst-
case-scenario.” In addition, he suggested that draft measures be put into practice to effectively protect network security in order to properly safeguard national sovereignty, security, and the development of the country’s interests.

At the same meeting, the committee’s vice chairman and Secretary for Security, Wong Sio Chak, reviewed the local government’s progress and achievements in “containing external threats,” “improving defense level” and “building a talent team” during the previous year.

Wong said the current network security awareness of all sectors of society has increased when compared to before the local Cybersecurity Law had been created, and the technical ability of cybersecurity maintenance staff has also increased.

The CE has also instructed the Macau Cybersecurity Incident Alert and Response Centre (CARIC) and the supervisory entities to diligently perform their duties and promote the development of cybersecurity in Macau. For this work to occur, it is necessary, on the one hand, to provide critical infrastructure operators with more technical guidance and support services that meet their needs, helping them to curb cyberattacks more efficiently; and, on the other hand, it is necessary to strengthen supervision to ensure that operators perform their obligations in accordance with the law.

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