Experts: Filipinos need to be Cyber Resilient

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During a Cybersecurity Virtual Event organized by Rizal Commercial Banking Corp. (RCBC) last 12 October 2022, industry experts shared how a whole nation approach is needed to make citizens of the country “cyber resilient” in curbing the rising cases of cyber attacks.

According to Allan Cabanlong, former Assistant Secretary for Cybersecurity and Enabling Technologies at the Department of Information and Communications Technology (DICT), it should be a “whole of the nation, whole of government, whole of society approach” in enhancing cybersecurity.

The former DICT official said awareness is important to help Filipinos become cyber-resilient.

For Technology Editor and Information & Communications Technology Head at Manila Bulletin Publishing Corp., Art Samaniego, agrees in saying that the “best solution we have is the whole of community approach to avoid scams and internet frauds.”

“While it is the responsibility of the users to look out for themselves, the public and private sectors need to equip us so we know how to use the latest technology. It should be the responsibility of users to cooperate with the private sector and for the government to prosecute cyber criminals. The government and the private sector should work together,” Samaniego added.

People fall victim to cybercrimes because of the lack of awareness. It is the responsibility of banks and the government to inform and educate. On the other hand, it is the end user’s responsibility to keep updated on how to protect their accounts.

“Be always suspicious. We need to have constant awareness and constant discussion,” added Cabanlong.

He advised the public to strengthen their system by such processes as getting firewalls, installing antivirus software, making sure that one is not using the same password in different portals, and always ignoring emails from questionable senders.

In order to help curb cyber threats, RCBC supported the Bangko Sentral ng Pilipinas’ call to enable banking clients to distinguish a fake from a legitimate communication by removing all clickable links in all its client communications, including emails, SMS, and Viber.

To continue to remain vigilant and protect their online banking accounts, clients are likewise advised to take advantage of the security features available to them when using RCBC Digital, including the biometrics login, one-time password (OTP) issuance, and the card lock/unlock feature. 

“RCBC is committed to make sure that our clients are well aware of cybercrime threats such as phishing, vishing, and email compromise, and that they are equipped with proper knowledge to protect themselves from these attacks. At the same time, the bank will continue to be the best partner for our clients in terms of accelerating digitalization and making our online banking services safe and convenient for them,” according to Carlos Tengkiat, RCBC Chief Information Security Officer as he underscored that cybersecurity is a shared responsibility between banks and their clients, and on top of the banks ensuring they have updated cybersecurity tools and capabilities, the best way to protect their customers is to teach them how to protect themselves.

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