A centralized cybercrime institution for Asia?

22 January 2013

+ Official Coverage on ZDNet

A centralized cybercrime institution for Asia?

A dedicated Pan-Asian online security agency will provide more effective protection for governments and companies, but the uneven legal landscape and enforcement regimes remain challenging. Spire’s views on this subject were featured in Tech journal ZDNet.

Talk of a centralized cybercrime center in Asia has been spurred by the creation of Europe’s Cybercrime Center last week. There is currently a lack of such an institution in the region, though there are agencies that are not cyber security-focused, such as the Interpol Global Complex in Singapore.

Given that increasingly more online crimes are borderless, the need to share necessary threat information across states is ever more pertinent. A dedicated cyber-security agency in Asia might be more effective in protecting governments, businesses and end-users against cyber security threats. Furthermore, it would facilitate the enactment of legislation by Asian countries to deter cybercriminals.

However, there are many hurdles to overcome before such an agency will become a reality. Leon Perera, Chief Executive Officer of Spire Research and Consulting, noted that Asia is more heterogeneous than Europe in terms of its legal landscape, comprising different legal regimes. Thus, an alignment of law enforcement activities is difficult to achieve. Differences such as a non-Roman alphabet-based language software will also need to be met. However, strong economic growth coupled with relatively weak law enforcement structures call for more crime-fighting tools than in Europe, not fewer.

In order to establish a successful cybercrime headquarters in Asia, industry experts observed the need to define its role clearly and obtain adequate legal support. The area of focus should be that of reducing cyber security threats to governments and companies.

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