Southeast Asian cyber security centre opens in Thailand

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BANGKOK (Sept 14): A cyber security centre opened in Thailand on Friday to train personnel from countries in the Association of Southeast Asian Nations (ASEAN) to help combat cyber threats in the attack-prone region.

The idea of the ASEAN-Japan Cyber Security Capacity Building Centre came from a meeting between ASEAN and Japan's ministers in Cambodia last year.

About 700 cybersecurity personnel from Southeast Asia are expected to graduate from the Japan-designed programmes, which include cyber defence, digital forensics and malware analysis.

"Every ASEAN member state is experiencing more sophisticated cyber threats, whereas the cyber security personnel are yet insufficient," said Surangkana Wayuparb, executive director of Thailand's Electronic Transaction Development Agency, where the centre is located.

Singapore suffered its worst ever cyber attack in July when hackers stole personal information of about 1.5 million people, including Prime Minister Lee Hsien Loong, from a government health database.

Earlier this year, Malaysia said it had foiled an attempted cyber heist on its central bank.

Thailand is currently drafting cyber security and data protection bills, which it expects to become law by the end of the year.