Vital for economies to embrace new technologies

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KUCHING: The public and private sector economies must quickly and effectively embrace new technologies such as artificial intelligence, virtual and augmented reality.

Premier Datuk Patinggi Tan Sri Abang Johari Tun Openg said this is in line with the state’s digitalisation initiative.

“I have recently launched the Post COVID-19 Development Strategy 2030 that shall see Sarawak’s focus on developing potential sectors and new resources, such as hydrogen, carbon capture, utilisation and storage (CCUS) and carbon trading.

“One of the main enablers is digital transformation. Digital transformation in this context means adopting and utilising digital technology to modernise traditional ways of delivering services and operating businesses, as well as to enhance efficiency and productivity in the economic sectors of Sarawak,” he explained.

He said this during the Institute of Engineers Malaysia (IEM) Sarawak Branch annual dinner at Imperial Hotel last night.

Abang Johari added as for the government sector, initiatives such as spatial and geographical information systems and building information modelling (BIM) platforms and others have been introduced.

“The government has been working extensively with SAINS on some of the most comprehensive geospatial solutions in Malaysia and providing various geospatial services for both the public and private sectors.

“Their GIS systems are the backbone of many government solutions, including our Land Management and Local Authority solutions,” he said.

He also said that the plan by IEM Sarawak to build an educational and digital lab with an integrated BIM platform and other engineering software for students and working engineers was a good initiative.

“This will bridge the industrial knowledge gaps especially in embracing artificial intelligence in all industries,” he said.

On another note, he said as the state strives to be at the forefront of the world’s digitalisation, there were also risks that come with it which is cyber security risks.

“There are findings from Trend Micro’s biannual Cyber Risk Index report, which measures the gap between the cyber security readiness of the clients versus their likelihood of being attacked.

“On a scale of -10 to 10, with -10 being the riskiest and 10 being the safest, our current position is at 0.08,” he said.

He said that the CRI also reported that 58 percent would very likely suffer critical cyber attacks in the next 12 months, 30 percent had suffered more than seven network and systems infiltration attacks, 14 percent had their information assets breached more than seven times, and 21 percent encountered more than seven customer data breaches over the past year.

“Engineers are no exception to this. Eventually, you will have to deal with a huge scale of data in every task.

“Therefore, we must return to the basics, identifying the critical data at risk, focusing on the threats that matter most to our economic sectors, and delivering multi-layered protection from comprehensive, connected platforms.

“I put up this challenge to IEM Sarawak Branch as one of our local engineering institutions to educate and train engineers for digitalisation and cyber security,” said Abang Johari.

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