CEO of PropertyGuru and Vice President of Trend Micro, Southeast Asia and India share thoughts on the Singapore Budget 2019

Hari V. Krishnan, CEO for PropertyGuru Group

We wholly support the focus on driving digitisation for further growth across economic sectors including property. PropertyGuru has been a front runner in enabling digitisation of the industry, bringing transparency and convenience to the property buyers in Singapore, and helping them make confident property decisions. PropertyGuru is often the digital and technology advisor to the supply-side stakeholders. Our focus now is to push digitisation to the property ecosystem (supply-side, property developers and agents), and fundamentally, infuse trust into the property sector. The industry-defining companies in entertainment, e-commerce and recruitment have started to train us, consumers, to expect relevancy at the core of our digital experience. It is time to bring that experience to the largest asset class in the world.

Nilesh Jain, Vice President, Southeast Asia and India, Trend Micro

How Trend Micro supports the national agenda

The cybersecurity jobs market has been a bright spot in recent years. A field that was once limited to defence contractors, government agencies and other highly technical niches has transformed into one that is now front and centre of every industry in Singapore. This has contributed to a fast-growing demand of cybersecurity talents across the world, leading to a shortage.

Many turn to automation as a solution. In an age when the volume of cyber threats is becoming overwhelming for any IT team, automation can help relieve some pressure, such as dealing with problems at a greater scale and with superior accuracy. However, automation cannot replace cybersecurity professionals still. Another challenge companies are facing is the increasing complexity of cyber threats. Many are becoming stealthier and more evasive than before. And spotting them requires deep human analysis. 

Therefore, developing threat-hunting and investigation capabilities, and training talents who can perform these tasks would be the top priority. The Singapore government’s role should be to help companies develop such skills, either in-house or via an external service provider who offers managed detection and response (MDR) services.

What Trend Micro is doing on a grassroots level

To deal with any talent shortage, there are two primary solutions. The first approach is to develop talent, which will benefit in the long run.

A country with a sterling education record, Singapore is already home to many regional talents who are ready to be developed into cybersecurity specialists. That’s why on a local level, we’re working with Republic Polytechnic to provide expertise, training, academic sponsorship, and internship opportunities for students from the Diploma in Infocomm Security Management. The curriculum is supplemented with an industry-based hands-on approach, giving the students the kind of real-world experience they need.

The second approach aims to address the issue in the short term, but it is also important, which is to “borrow” expertise from specialists who already have the skillsets. That’s why we started offering managed detection and response services this year, with analysts sitting in the Singapore office.

We think these initiatives are a good start to prepare Singapore companies for the next generation of cyber threats. Continued threat protection will require the smart use of resources, investment in training and technology, and knowledge of the most effective defences against an increasingly complex threat environment.

Darryl McKinnon, Managing Director & Vice President, APJ, Puppet

The Singapore Budget continues to recognise the challenges faced by Singaporeans, and we welcome the measures provided to help Singaporeans and businesses build deeper capabilities for the new economy. Critical to this is helping to equip workers with necessary skillsets and resources to grow and succeed in a digital economy which is powered by software. Not only this, but upskilling is also helping to up-level jobs to make them less about process, more about human interaction. Only with a workforce that is empowered and enabled in this way, can businesses operate like an innovative and fast-moving organisation to transform customer experiences. Growing the skills of employees is an area that must remain high on the agenda for corporate leaders – just as the Budget has articulated that leaders of successful companies are those who are committed to raising the capabilities of their workers.

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