Steps towards stronger cybersecurity in the Philippines

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AMID growing national concerns over a rise in the number of cyberattacks, cybercrimes, and other issues with customer data breaches, Cybersecurity Month in the Philippines kicked off this month of October 22.

Awareness of and protection from these cyberattacks became accessible to many but despite this, risks of cyberattacks in the Philippines remained high.

With this in mind, customers still need to be extra vigilant when it comes to accessing financial services online.

In response to these emerging trends and issues, plans to secure more efficient data protection practices have been discussed by the Philippine government and in particular, the Department of Information and Communications Technology, which, in turn, introduced the National Cybersecurity Plan 2022.

This plan aims to implement and enforce mechanisms towards a cybersecurity-educated and cyber resilient society, secure infrastructures and networks and ensure effective coordination with law enforcement agencies whenever there is a breach.

The newly signed SIM Card Registration Law, on the other hand, aims to require the registration of Subscriber Identity Module (SIM) cards for electronic devices. In doing so, it will promote accountability and provide law enforcement agencies with mechanisms to resolve crimes committed otherwise anonymously.

These measures are becoming more relevant due to widespread issues in cybersecurity across the Philippines. The circulation of spam text messages containing scams, for example, have been the most rampant concern for millions of Filipinos in recent months. Many users have reported anonymous numbers getting hold of their names and mobile numbers and receiving messages with scam-filled links for the purpose of financial gain.

Securing online accounts and choosing safe and trusted brands to interact with is only the beginning to ensuring one’s safety online, according to Earl Melivo, Interim APAC Director of WorldRemit.

In today’s society, the collection of personal information is necessary to carry out financial transactions but customers need to be conscious of who they are providing that data to.

Stop, check and reject every suspicious message. As scams and fraud continue to rise, all Filipinos should stay alert and diligent,” said Melivo.

While digital remittances are perceived as a high-risk sector for financial crime, regulated organizations, like WorldRemit, maintain a high commitment to cybersecurity, as they are often working hand-in-hand with regulators and bank partners around the world.  This is translated into concrete processes that embed a culture of compliance. 

We maintain an experienced compliance team that understands and detects financial crime risks. In addition, our long-standing membership in the FinTech Financial Crime Exchange has also been instrumental to the platform to regularly review its security measures and keep user transactions protected from any external threats,” said Melivo.

To learn more about how WorldRemit is keeping customer’s safe, visit: https://www.worldremit.com/en/faq/security-privacy

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