Philippine Association for Government Budget Administration, Inc. (PAGBA Inc.)
Crown Legacy Hotel, Baguio City
May 01 to 04, 2019
I was assigned to give insights to following topics discussed in PAGBA 2019: Cybersecurity and Social Media Ethics topics.
National Cyber Security Plan 2022
The Department of Information and Communications Technology (DICT) has their hands full of keeping our data protected, especially government data, in the cyberspace. In this conference, Mr. Allan S. Cabanlong, Assistant Secretary of the said agency, discussed the recent threats and attacks in our country’s cyberspace, as well as the plan on how to battle them. The agency devised strategies, one namely National Security Strategy wherein it sets goals for our nation’s security from cyber attacks for the well-being of Filipino people. And to implement such strategies, the agency came up of a plan in cybersecurity and called National Cybersecurity Plan 2022.
What is DICT really protecting?
Maybe some people are wondering why do we need a cybersecurity plan, and why do we need to “have” this. In my opinion, we are living now on what we called “Information Age” wherein the information can be retrieved so fast and efficient like a blink of an eye. What is the benefit of living right now in this kind of age? Well, to put it simply, the faster the information is, the faster the transaction is processed, then there will be a lot of jobs being done. And how do we make, how do we do the information to be used for faster transaction? By making the information “public” or what we call now “put it on the internet” makes it available publicly and can be retrieved easily. So that is why we need a plan for securing our information. It does not mean that when the information is available publicly, there will be no limitation. As technical as it may sound, there are protocols on protecting the information even if it is available in public or online. This is the main reason that our government is very serious on protecting our information online, because at this age it is not the battle knives and guns that can win war. Information that is.
Cybersecurity in PAGBA
There are many “technical” topics dicussed during the conference like the coordination of DICT with public, private and international partners; key strategic imperatives in the cybersecurity campaign; critical infostructure; memorandum circulars 005 to 007, s2017; website of security assessment recognition scheme; computer emergency response team (CERT); integration of cybersecurity in the academe and; rule on cybercrime warrants. The agency has also provided trainings on CERT which held in May and August last year 2018. Just stay tuned for the announcement of CERT training this year.
Child Online Protection
I should say the highlight of all topics is about the trend of child pornography. Child pornography is one of the current cybercrimes in the country and needs to be halted, if not now then immediately. There was this short film, titled Manika, which focused on the said cybercrime. In my opinion, Gender and Development (GAD) is somehow connected or should I say deeply involved in cybersecurity because child protection is not limited inside the house, streets, family, but also in the cyberspace. The integration of technology has a significant part in the success of GAD.
National ID System
In cybersecurity, DICT promotes the use of national ID system.
RA 11055 – Philippine Identification Systems Act
Section 18 of R.A. 11055,
“The Philippine Statistics Authority (PSA) with the technical assistance from the DICT shall implement reasonable and appropriate, organizational, technical and physical security measures to ensure that the information gathered by PhilSys, is protected by unauthorized access, use disclosure, and against accidental or intentional loss, destruction or damaged.
As of now, creating of cybersecurity bureau project is now in the final stage. Final configuration and tune-up of hardware and software is now underway. The said bureau will serve as the security operation center wherein a person may consult, file a case, and ask anything regarding information technology and of course cybersecurity.
Thoughts and Conclusion
Safeguarding our digital information really involves multiple techniques and countless securities. These techniques cannot be acquired by attending one or two seminars or trainings because as day goes by different methods and technologies can be employed to protect our data. We need to be updated in DICT’s effort for this and participate with their programs and training because we do not know, when the time comes, our data is already in cloud storage, we are using paperless documents, we must be competitive enough to secure our own data.
Social Media Ethics
The speaker, Dr. Lorraine Marie T. Badoy, started the talk with a story. The story was about helping her poor neighborhood. As a doctor, she provided medical assistance, taught them reproductive health because she was wondering why there were so many kids in their area. The houses, that time, are subhuman, floor is mud, and there is one faucet which serves as water source for five hundred families. The said faucet is open from 9 to 11am, then 1pm to 4pm. To make it short, the people living there are very poor.
Like any other stories, there is a positive on it. She realized that time that poor people were very creative. Many people are saying that the poor are lazy but she was proving it to be false. The only frustration she had that was that she could not get those people out of poverty. Worse comes to worst Yolanda happened, she saw something to the government that really enraged her. The corruption, heartlessness that time seemed to be normal. To make the story short, poor does not change their lives. After her ordeal, she decided to resign from her current job just to be there for them. She ended her story by telling that us (public servants), our role is very essential to our country. Put heart and love to your profession. By doing that, it would be a massive help to our people and country.
Thoughts and Conclusion
I was expecting that her speech would tackle the ethical use of social media in government offices. I felt disappointed that she shared a non-IT related topic and it was not really connected in social media usage at all. To make it short, it did not meet my expectation. However, if we want to “force” connect her story to a non-IT social media, meaning in real social life, I think it is fair to say that she nailed it. Helping others without asking for anything in return, for me that is the greatest contribution you can ever give to your society. Nothing is more beautiful than a person who is happy after you served them. That is how public servant should be and would be.