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IR4.0: Government, businesses urged to strengthen security systems

Last update: 03/09/2019
For illustration purpose only.
KUALA LUMPUR, Sept 3 -- The government and businesses are urged to strengthen their security systems with the advent of Industrial Revolution 4.0 (IR4.0) implementation in the country.

Trend Micro Inc vice-president of security research Rik Ferguson said it was important to have security as a part of the design phase and investment strategy to ensure manufacturing capability did not fall victim to risks such as ransomware.

"The more connected devices there are (and) the more a nation becomes known for being a leader in that space, the more targeted they can be," he told reporters on the sidelines of Trend Micro's Security Trends 2019 conference here today.

Ferguson said the manufacturing sector was not particularly used to being connected, as it was usually set in the factory environment where the actual prime concern was safety, which was a concept different from security.

“On an equal footing with safety, you now have to consider in particular cybersecurity. So, it is not that security is weak but it is a new paradigm and a new environment.

“If you ask people to consider that, you are asking people about an area that they do not necessarily have skills in. It is about being able to pull out expertise from a traditional cybersecurity environment and bring that into the industrial space, but it is important that the efforts are from the ground up,” he noted.

Ferguson also stressed the need to build up awareness among the businesses and persuade them to take action against cybersecurity threats.

“If you do not (do it), you are setting yourself up for failure and in the long term, it is not your manufacturing industry that is going to succeed; it is somebody else's,” he added.

The findings in the first half of 2019 confirmed the predictions Trend Micro made last year. A key prediction last year was that attackers were increasingly becoming smarter as they targeted businesses and environments that would give them the greatest “return on investment”.

Trend Micro’s roundup report for the first half of 2019 reported that malware threats were detected and blocked close to 2.5 million times in Malaysia, the second most-hit place after Singapore in Southeast Asia.

In addition, Malaysia ranked third in the region for blocking 3,568 banking malware threats during the same period.


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