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Govt websites to see more downtime for cyber security tests

Government websites may experience more downtime for maintenance to guard against increasingly complex cyber threats, said Communications and Information Minister Yaacob Ibrahim.

SINGAPORE: Government websites may experience more downtime for maintenance to guard against increasingly complex cyber threats, said Communications and Information Minister Yaacob Ibrahim.

In a written parliamentary reply to MP for Sembawang GRC Vikram Nair and MP for Jurong GRC David Ong Kim Huat who had asked what is being done to improve cyber security in light of recent hacking incidents, Dr Yaacob said no organisation can prevent all cyber attacks.

Patches for software vulnerabilities have to be tested before they are deployed so there is a trade-off between security and the availability of services.

"We seek the public's understanding and patience as agencies seek to ensure systems are updated more frequently," he said.

Government agencies have stepped up vigilance and enhanced the security of their information and communications systems, to guard against possible threats. 

Deputy Prime Minister Teo Chee Hean, who is also Minister for Home Affairs, said in a written reply to MP for Marine Parade GRC Tin Pei Ling, who had asked about the precautions the government had taken against cyber threats to Singapore's key infrastructure, among others.

Mr Teo said regular security scans and system patching are carried out on critical government information infrastructure to detect and eliminate system vulnerabilities.

The Home Affairs and Communications and Information ministries, and the Infocomm Development Authority work closely together to monitor and assess the state of the country's cyber security, and strengthen it where necessary, he added.

Mr Teo said the government takes a serious view of all threats to Singapore's cyber security and will spare no effort to track down and bring to justice perpetrators of such criminal acts.

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