28 Jun 2021
Latest survey finds that while more respondents had fallen victim to a cyber incident in 2020, adoption of good cyber hygiene practices has yet to catch up
The Cyber Security Agency of Singapore (CSA) has launched a new “Better Cyber Safe than Sorry” national cybersecurity awareness campaign. The fourth edition of CSA’s national cybersecurity awareness campaign continues to focus on raising awareness and driving adoption of four good cybersecurity practices: use of strong passwords and enabling two-factor authentication (2FA); spotting signs of phishing; use of anti-virus software; and updating computer software. The campaign focuses on drawing parallels between these four cybersecurity practices and our everyday life. For example, the analogy of using a strong lock to secure one’s home parallels the good cybersecurity practice of using strong passwords and enabling 2FA to secure one’s online accounts.
To further extend the campaign’s reach, CSA will be working with Shopee, Carousell and NTUC FairPrice to publicise the campaign through the Shopee and Carousell apps, and in around 150 NTUC FairPrice stores and through FairPrice digital platforms respectively. CSA will also reach out to the public through bus stop ads and bus wraps, television advertisements and social media platforms. More details of the campaign in Annex A.
The “Better Cyber Safe than Sorry” campaign comes on the heels of CSA’s latest annual cybersecurity awareness survey which found that 37 per cent of respondents had reported falling victim to a cyber incident at least once in 2020 - a jump from 28 per cent in 2019 – reflecting global trends of cyber incidents becoming more prevalent. The Cybersecurity Awareness Survey 2020 found that although general awareness of cybersecurity had improved, adoption of good cyber hygiene practices – such as enabling two-factor authentication (2FA) and using cybersecurity apps - continued to be low.
More are aware of good cyber practices but adoption remains low
For example, perceived awareness of phishing had increased with seven in 10 respondents knowing what phishing was - a six percentage point increase from 2019. Three-quarters of respondents were able to correctly identify more than half the emails, an improvement of 12 percentage points over 2019. A slight increase was also seen in those who adopted desirable password practices: close to nine in 10 respondents used a combination of letters in upper and lower cases, numbers and symbols in their passwords. However, only slightly more than half of the respondents (56 per cent) were able to identify a strong password - unchanged from the year before. There was also a slight increase in respondents who adopted 2FA; although only about half had adopted the additional practice of enabling 2FA as an additional layer of protection for their communication, online shopping and social media accounts. While nearly eight in 10 respondents were aware of the risks of not having cybersecurity apps, only 39 per cent of respondents had installed cybersecurity apps in their mobile devices, a drop from 47 per cent in 2019. For more details of the Cybersecurity Awareness Survey 2020 findings, please refer to Annex B.
“The COVID-19 pandemic has led to many more of our day-to-day activities being conducted digitally. It is important that we are all aware of and adopt good cyber hygiene to stay safe online in light of our greater digital footprint. While our survey findings showed that there has been improvement in terms of awareness, many respondents continue to believe that they would not be a target of cyber criminals. More needs to be done to increase adoption levels, and CSA is delighted to work with new partners to further extend the reach of our campaign to drive awareness and adoption of good cyber practices,” says Mr David Koh, Chief Executive, CSA.
“Shopee has always prided itself on providing our community of users, sellers, and brand partners with safe and enjoyable online shopping experiences. As e-commerce continues to become more integrated in our lives, we are committed to helping consumers develop a clear understanding on how to keep themselves protected from online scams, while reaping the benefits e-commerce has to offer. As such, we are excited to team up with like-minded partners such as the CSA, and look forward to a fruitful partnership that inspires and fosters better practices to help our community navigate e-commerce safely and productively,” says Mr Zhou Junjie, Chief Commercial Officer, Shopee.
“Online security has always been a priority for Carousell and we are proud to support CSA’s national cybersecurity awareness campaign. The online threats that we are up against today move too quickly and are constantly evolving. The only way we can stay ahead is by educating our users on how they can stay safe online and proactively inculcating awareness in addition to our ongoing investment in platform security,” says Tan Su Lin, Chief of Staff and Senior Vice President of Operations, Carousell.
Expanding outreach to 50,000 seniors
Running in tandem with the “Better Cyber Safe than Sorry” campaign is a new SG Cyber Safe Seniors Programme, driven by CSA with support from the Singapore Police Force (SPF) and Infocomm Media Development Authority (IMDA). The programme aims to reach out to 50,000 seniors over two years (2021 – 2023) to raise their awareness of cybersecurity and encourage adoption of good cyber hygiene practices. CSA and its partners will cover topics - such as cyber threats, cyber scams and cyber tips - in the four national languages, through a mix of physical and online platforms. More details of the SG Cyber Safe Seniors Programme in Annex C.
Over the next few months, CSA will also roll out initiatives – for students and small and medium-sized enterprises (SMEs) - aimed at increasing awareness and encouraging adoption of good cybersecurity practices. CSA has worked with IMDA and Ministry of Education (MOE) to introduce a cybersecurity module for upper primary school students as part of the Code for Fun programme since January 2021. To make cybersecurity more experiential to students, CSA will also launch the revamped Go Safe Online Pop-up - comprising motion-controlled games and information panels - and Go Safe Online Drama Skit in the third quarter of 2021, bringing both interactive content formats to more primary and secondary schools.
CSA has also announced a new SG Cyber Safe Programme in February 2021 to help enterprises such as SMEs improve their cybersecurity posture. As part of the programme, CSA will roll out cybersecurity toolkits for enterprise leaders, technical teams and their employees to increase their awareness of cybersecurity issues and threats, and the measures to adopt. CSA will launch the first two toolkits - targeted at enterprise leaders and employees - by the end of 2021.
About the Cyber Security Agency of Singapore
Established in 2015, the Cyber Security Agency of Singapore (CSA) seeks to keep Singapore’s cyberspace safe and secure to underpin our Nation Security, power a Digital Economy and protect our Digital Way of Life. It maintains an oversight of national cybersecurity functions and works with sector leads to protect Singapore’s Critical Information Infrastructure. CSA also engages with various stakeholders to heighten cyber security awareness, build a vibrant cybersecurity ecosystem supported by a robust workforce, pursue international partnerships and drive regional cybersecurity capacity building programmes.
CSA is part of the Prime Minister’s Office and is managed by the Ministry of Communications and Information. For more news and information, please visit www.csa.gov.sg.