RSA Conference 2019 APJ: Highlights Public and Private Sector Expert Insights, Calls for Stronger Regional Collaborations for Higher Cybersecurity Standards


The annual regional Cybersecurity Conference continues to draw international attendees and experts to strategise for today’s cybersecurity challenges

RSA Conference has announced the conclusion of its 7th regional event in Singapore. This year, the Conference saw richer international representation of attendees and public sector participation from across the region reinforcing its relevance.

Over the three-day conference, programs including expert-led keynote and track sessions, Learning Labs and seminars, focused on themes like data governance and privacy, critical national infrastructure, artificial intelligence and blockchain, that are impacting the regional security landscape today.

“Asia continues to play a significant role in the global Cybersecurity scene, and this year’s RSA Conference APJ has highlighted the region’s dynamic ecosystem, demonstrating how it continues be at the forefront of innovation,” said Linda Gray Martin, Sr. Director & General Manager, RSA Conferences. “Our distinguished guests, partners and attendees have truly exemplified this year’s theme of Better, and represented the collective desire to do more, do better and work together to make this reality.”

Experts at RSA Conference 2019 APJ: Cybersecurity Requires Government, Industry and Public Collaboration

In his opening keynote, Mr Amrin Amin, Senior Parliamentary Secretary (SPS), Ministry of Home Affairs and Ministry of Health emphasized the importance of a multi-pronged approach to tackle increasingly complex cyberthreats through better regional and international cooperation, better government capabilities, and better public awareness. He said, “This is the 7th year that the Singapore Ministry of Home Affairs is supporting RSA Conference Asia Pacific & Japan in Singapore, which continues to be an important platform for all of us, policy makers, thought leaders, and cybersecurity professionals from around the region.” SPS Amin also announced new Government initiatives including the new Home Team Science & Technology Agency which will be launched by the end of the year to strengthen digital security capabilities of Home Team, Singapore’s national training institute for government agencies.

Elaborating on the importance of equipping the next generation for cybersecurity and public action, Kyla Guru, Chief Executive Officer, Bits N’ Bytes Cybersecurity Education, delivered a passionate opening day keynote where she addressed the crucial role of collaboration with the public and education sector to mobilize Generation Z for greater cybersecurity. “Young people have a part in securing the future, because they are the future. As the biggest users of technology, spending 80 percent of their waking day online, they need to have a seat at the table and educating them through awareness, training and advocacy will be how we strengthen our human firewall.”

The Conference concluded with The Hugh Thompson Show, an annual and ever-popular highlight. With a focus on DeepFakes and the Human Zero Day this year, Dr Hugh Thompson, Program Committee Chair, RSA Conference, was joined by guests, Alexis Conran, Presenter and Broadcaster, Dr Saurabh Shintre, Senior Principal Researcher, Symantec, and Dr Vrizlynn Thing, Senior Vice President, Head of Cybersecurity Strategic Technology Centre, ST Engineering to discuss the phenomenon.

“The ease of use and accessibility of such tools to create deepfakes is what makes it so dangerous,” Dr Shintre explained.

“Yet, we are at a point where experts can identify deepfakes. It’s time that we take precautions by firstly, being aware of the phenomenon and secondly, thinking deeper about the information we consume and receive – how it matters, what its objectives are and what are the consequences of trusting it,” said Dr Thing.

Other Conference highlights include:

  • 16 keynote speakers and panelists, more than 110 speakers across 107 sessions, 75 sponsors and exhibitors, and 31 regional association partners
  • Pre-Conference programs including The Cyber Investigators’ Challenge, a Capture-the-Flag event co-organised by the Ministry of Home Affairs and Singapore Cybersecurity Consortium and DevSecOps Day that brought together practitioners for a series of talks around securing application development
  • Introduction of RSA Conference’s Innovation Program in the region with RSAC Launch Pad and RSAC Early Stage Expo to showcase up-and-coming cybersecurity startups. Strobes emerged the winner of RSAC Launch Pad and will be exhibiting at RSA Conference 2020 USA
  • New and Industry-Relevant Conference tracks – Analytics, Intelligence & Response Track, The Human & Process Security Track Policy, Government & Regulations; Global Perspectives; Threats, Analytics & Threat Actors; Security Strategy & Data Security; eFraud & Law Enforcement; and Cloud, Mobile & IoT Security

Continuing to Deliver an Exceptional Experience for Conference Attendees and Exhibitors

“Cybersecurity is a central challenge of our digital age. RSA Conference 2019 in Asia provided me a platform to reinforce Microsoft’s commitment to cybersecurity and share insights with organizations in Asia Pacific on how they can get the most benefit from advances in the fields of AI and machine learning by focusing on the culture and diversity within their own cybersecurity teams. Without diverse teams working on the ML models, the data and the threat models may end up automating bias or even the attack paths for criminals. AI is a crucial linchpin in cybersecurity, our teams need to be as diverse as the problems we are trying to solve,” said Diana Kelley, Cybersecurity Field CTO, Microsoft.

“The APJ region continues to accelerate its lead in cybersecurity innovation, and we are always excited to work with up-and-coming talent and startups here as they break into the industry. This year at RSA Conference 2019 APJ, ICE71 was able to do just that with our involvement at the RSAC Early Stage Expo (ESE), where we met and worked with emerging startups who are already addressing the latest security challenges. We definitely look to further these conversations and do even more with the startups in our region in the years ahead together with RSAC,” Linda Nguyen Schindler, Programme Head, ICE71.

“With the threat landscape constantly evolving, it is imperative that our cybersecurity ecosystem continues evolving with it. RSA Conference 2019 APJ provided a great platform for connecting with various organisations, academia, industry experts and up-and-coming talent, and ideating around how we can use technology for good and stay a step ahead of bad actors. We look forward to our involvement at upcoming conferences, and to seeing new innovations emerge as we work towards strengthening connections in the region for a safer digital world,” Leo Hwa Chiang, Director, Singapore Operations, IEEE.

RSA Conference 2020 APJ takes place July 14 to 16, 2020 in Singapore. Prior to that, RSAC Unplugged Sydney is set for October 10, 2019. RSA Conference 2020 takes place February 24 to 28, 2020 in San Francisco.