Three parties unite to beef up cybersecurity in Laos

VIENTIANE (Vientiane Times/ANN) - The Lao Computer Emergency Response Team (LaoCERT) under the Ministry of Post and Telecommunications, Datacom Co., Ltd. and Portcullis Technology Pte Co., Ltd. of Singapore have teamed up to strengthen human resources in the field of cybersecurity.

A Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) on the partnership was signed last Friday in Vientiane between LaoCERT Director General Mr Khamla Sounnalat, President of Datacom Co., Ltd. Mr Thanongsinh Kanlagna, and Managing Director of Portcullis Technology Pte Co., Ltd. Max Lee.

While computers and the internet have become part of people’s everyday life and work there are also negative impacts on society and the economy, such as computer viruses, security vulnerabilities, data information leaks, cyber attacks and so on.

Statistics recording incident responses last year in Laos showed that 34 per cent were related to website defacement, 25 per cent were denial of service, 17 per cent were malware, and 8 per cent were related to spam, while phishing and network vulnerability scanning were also prevalent.

This situation meant the private and government sectors must build capacity in cybersecurity and prepare to cope with emergency situations, Khamla said.

“But in Laos we still don’t have an institution in charge of providing training courses to prevent cyber threat issues. The government needs to improve the knowledge base for private and government sectors on cybersecurity in order to protect their own computer networks and infrastructure,” he said.

Khamla added that specialist teams needed to keep monitoring, preparing and responding to all cyber threats that occur in Laos so they provide timely updates and protection information to computer networks throughout the country.

Thanongsinh said with the three parties’ commitment and collaboration, the public and private sectors would have more capable staff and could strengthen their knowhow in cybersecurity and help their organisations with cyber protection and problem solving using regional level expertise.

Laos will be able to learn from top regional cybersecurity experts while participating in technology transfer and the development of cybersecurity and human resources both nationally and within the Asean Economic Community.

This would ensure that the country can meet its development goals and fully utilise the strength of ICT across the largest number of fields, sectors and industries, he added.

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