New cyber security centre to defend Singapore's smart nation systems

A new CyberSecurity Research Centre will be set up here to defend the systems being developed to turn Singapore into a smart nation. -- PHOTO: REUTERS
A new CyberSecurity Research Centre will be set up here to defend the systems being developed to turn Singapore into a smart nation. -- PHOTO: REUTERS

SINGAPORE - A new CyberSecurity Research Centre will be set up here to defend the systems being developed to turn Singapore into a smart nation.

The centre will be spearheaded by the Institute for Infocomm Research (I2R), a unit of A*Star (Agency for Science, Technology and Research), and Singapore Technologies Electronics' subsidiary ST Electronics Info-Security. The centre will study and develop capabilities in cyber forensics and mobile security to complement existing cyber security efforts.

"As we look to improve our technology and energy infrastructure, the growing interconnectivity and inter-dependency of these different (smart nation) systems means they could become prime targets for attacks," said A*Star chairman Lim Chuan Poh.

Two weeks ago, the Infocomm Development Authority (IDA) announced plans to install up to 1,000 sensors - which can be in the form of computer chips or surveillance cameras - across Singapore by the end of next year.

These sensors, as part of Singapore's Smart Nation Platform, will support various government projects, such as one to increase surveillance in Little India and Geylang, and another to better monitor the risk of the Singapore River flooding. This system is expected to lead to substantial savings as the infrastructure will be shared by various agencies.

"Strengthening the security of these systems as they become more valuable to us is therefore another key area of focus," said Mr Lim, while delivering the opening address at the ICM Horizons exhibition on Thursday.

I2R also announced plans to work with the Housing Board, Singapore Power and locally-based industrial energy solutions maker Narada to develop storage systems for renewable energy.

"Singapore is the leading clean energy hub for the region and clean technology has been identified as a key growth area by the government as early as 2007," said Mr Lim, adding that this too paves the way for Singapore's ambition to be a smart nation.