KUALA LUMPUR: The government needs to spend more to bolster the country’s defence against increasing cyber threats, said Senior Minister for Security Ismail Sabri Yaakob.
He said the country would be vulnerable to cyber attacks if all information was compromised and irresponsible parties took advantage of the situation.
“I can honestly say that we still need a lot of money to improve our defence in dealing with cyber threats. I cannot reveal the percentage of our defence capabilities, but we do need more (financially),” he said in a recent interview.
He said that to deal with cyber threats holistically and proactively, collaborations have been forged with strategic partners, such as the National Cyber Security Agency (Nacsa), Malaysian Communications and Multimedia Commission (MCMC) and Universiti Pertahanan Nasional Malaysia’s Centre of Excellence For Cyber Security as well as with regional and international bodies.
Meanwhile, he said the ministry was adopting the Public-Private Partnership (PPP) approach, including the Private Financing Initiative and Land Swap methods, to resolve the issue of housing among armed forces personnel.
Ismail added that a total of 35,000 homes are needed and that the government has approved a RM500 million allocation to build 1,000 units this year.
He said that since it would take 35 years to build 35,000 homes, the ministry could not just wait for government funds but had to find other ways, such as partnering with the private sector to build more houses for its military personnel.
“Through observation, I found that many military personnel do not own a house and have to rent. To overcome this problem, a total of 3,500 units of houses priced between RM150,000 and RM250,000 per unit were built through the One Member One House (SASAR) programme last year,” he said.
Ismail added that the ministry planned to build 7,374 units of houses priced between RM150,000 and RM400,000 under the second project of the SASAR programme in Setapak this year.
On the welfare of military veterans, he said the ministry would continue to protect them by providing financial and health assistance.
“They (veterans) are also given training through the Armed Forces Ex-Servicemen Affairs Corporation (Perhebat) to help them secure employment or conduct their own business after completing their 21 years of service in the force,” he said.