The need for information security (InfoSec) experts


Securing information online has to become an integral factor in people’s minds as we move forward in the digital age, with the plethora of security threats online.

UTAR IT-related courses nurture cyber professionals of the future

THE digital age has changed the way we live, work and communicate. While we rejoice in the many developments in the virtual world, the risks associated with it are prevalent as hackers/attackers leverage advancements in technology as well.

However, as the risks become more sophisticated, our cyber literacy doesn’t exactly follow suit.

Prof Goi Bok Min, 49, from Universiti Tunku Abdul Rahman (UTAR), said that this is mainly due to the public’s lack of “cyber awareness” when it comes to topics such as information security (InfoSec).

“It’s quite scary when we talk about the threats online. The digital world is something that you cannot see or feel, which makes it hard for people to understand.

“InfoSec, on its own, is already a challenging field to understand. It’s very abstract and the public is often unsure of how security can be achieved and how they can be protected online,” said Prof Goi who is UTAR’s vice president of internationalisation and academic development, and an expert in cryptology and InfoSec.”

‘InfoSec, on its own, is already a challenging field to understand. It’s very abstract and the public is often unsure of how security can be achieved and how they can be protected online,’ said UTAR Prof Goi Bok Min.‘InfoSec, on its own, is already a challenging field to understand. It’s very abstract and the public is often unsure of how security can be achieved and how they can be protected online,’ said UTAR Prof Goi Bok Min.

He said that securing information online has to become an integral factor in people’s minds as we move forward in the digital age, with the plethora of security threats online.

“Efficiency and convenience is always the main focus when it comes to new technology. People always think about how to make it faster and better, but the security aspect is always left to the last.

“If people don’t know how security technologies are applied in our everyday lives, they won’t be able to appreciate all the work put into it.

“That’s where cryptology comes in. The whole point of it is to try and make our virtual world similar to the physical in terms of security, if not better, as whatever happens virtually has the same impact in real life,” he said.

Prof Goi said that the team at UTAR has been active in research with multiple publications and even two patents pertaining to cryptology and biometric security.Prof Goi said that the team at UTAR has been active in research with multiple publications and even two patents pertaining to cryptology and biometric security.

He shared that elements of cryptology and InfoSec principles are integrated into multiple courses at UTAR branching from the information technology (IT) field.

UTAR offers a number of IT-influenced degree courses (with honours), such as Bachelor of Computer Science, Bachelor of Software Engineering, Bachelor of Information Systems with specialisations in Business Information Systems, Digital Economy Technology and Information Systems Engineering, and Bachelor of Information Technology with specialisations in Computer Engineering and, Communications and Networking.

Furthermore, many other degree programmes, such as Applied Mathematics with Computing and Financial Technology include topics on information systems security and other IT-related subjects.

Prof Goi added that he hopes Malaysia will boost efforts to nurture more local talents in the industry that are qualified and have acquired proper certifications such as the Certified Information Systems Security Professional (CISSP) certificate.

“Hopefully we can start to have our own algorithms and build our own talent rather than just import the technology and put our trust elsewhere.

“We need to have more certified professionals that are qualified and capable to provide security services,” he said.

If you are interested in finding out more on UTAR’s programmes and events, visit https://study.utar.edu.my/

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