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Partner countries need to step up in-country response teams: IMPACT

AvantiKumar | Dec. 5, 2009
Calls for cyber threat response acceleration.
KUALA LUMPUR, 5 DECEMBER 2009 -- International Multilateral Partnership Against Cyber Threats (IMPACT) has called for partner companies to step up in-country cyber response teams.

Such a step is overdue in the light of increasing cyber threats especially targetting emerging markets such in Asia Pacific, Africa and the Middle East, according to IMPACT chairman, management board, Mohd Noor Amin.

There is a need to promote national-level commitment for cyber security," said Amin. "With greater connectivity come graver risks. In addition, the rate of IT infrastructure and broadband acceleration will require swift cyber security response teams, who can aptly overcome cyber threats that have the potential to cripple economies.

According to the Internet World Stats as of 30 June, 2009, the Asia Pacific has 42.2 per cent of the world's Internet users, he said. Africa hosted 3.9 per cent, and the Middle East laid claim to 2.9 per cent. During the World Economic Forum in Davos, experts called for a new system to tackle well-organised gangs of cyber criminals, claiming online theft costs US$1 trillion a year, and attacks continue to rise."

Without the minimal level of cyber security infrastructures, response teams, compliances and policies in place, the potential damage from cyber threats by malicious attackers leveraging the Internet will be unimaginable, said Amin.

IMPACT's Global Response Centre (GRC) data showed that from 11 to 17 November 2009, more than 14 million computers globally were newly infected with bots, which are software applications that run automated tasks over the Internet and are often associated with malicious intent. "The Conficker bot had infected 210,000 new computers in that period. On 16 November 2009 alone, the GRC detected eight new malicious bot types."

The International Multilateral Partnership Against Cyber Threats (IMPACT) is the first global partnership against cyber threats, which is positioned as a politically neutral platform, bringing together governments, industry leaders and cyber security experts to enhance the global community's capacity to prevent, defend and respond to cyber threats. IMPACT's global headquarters is located in Cyberjaya, Malaysia.

 Building new partnerships

Amin said that to further reinforce IMPACT's mandate to amplify cyber security professional skill sets, IMPACT has aligned with (ISC)², the not-for-profit global leader in certifying and educating information security professionals throughout their careers with more than 66,000 members worldwide, through a memorandum of understanding (MoU). 

IMPACT will leverage (ISC)²'s`expertise to provide training to partner countries, particularly targeted at the developing nations," he said. This is in line with our mandate of operationalising the Global Cyber Security Agenda in escalating cyber security capabilities and capacities to better protect, defend against and respond to cyber threats.  The Global Cyber Security Agenda is the International Telecommunication Union's framework to enhance confidence and cyber security in the information society."

Under the agreement, (ISC)²'s Certified Information Systems Security Professional (CISSP), Systems Security Certified Practitioner (SSCP), and Certified Secure Software Lifecycle Professional (CSSLPCM) certification courses will be offered to professionals in IMPACT's partner countries to enhance IMPACT's position in providing a holistic approach to public sector cyber security The courses are based on (ISC)²'s CBK, a global compendium of information security best practices. "The first course to be offered will be in Africa during quarter one of 2010 and will cover the SSCP certification," said Amin.