PRESIDENT Ferdinand R. Marcos, Jr. said he will call on Congress to fast-track the passage of three pieces of legislation to address the existing gaps in the country’s cybersecurity policies.
The chief executive made the commitment to the Private Sector Advisory Council (PSAC) Digital Infrastructure Group during their meeting on Tuesday.
PSAC has recommended the passage of the Cybersecurity Act (Senate Bill No. 1365), Anti-Mule Act (Senate Bill No. 2039) and the Online Site Blocking Act (Senate Bill Nos. 2150 and No. 2385) in line with the Philippine Digital Transformation Framework.
Marcos agreed with the proposals and said he will be coordinating with lawmakers on the matter.
“It looks like there is a great need for structural requirements in legislation,” he told PSAC.
Last week, the President reiterated that cybersecurity is one of the priorities of his administration due to its impact on national security.
Data from the Department of Information and Communications (DICT) showed the country suffered 3,000 “high level cyberattacks” from 2020 to 2022.
DICT said it also supports the Cybersecurity Act to allow the government to protect public digital assets.
Among the salient provisions of the bill is it will allow the inventory and safeguarding of critical information infrastructures (CIIs). It will also impose potential penalties for underperforming entities in observing the standards and practices to protect digital assets.
PSAC is also endorsing the Anti-Mule Act to criminalize the registration or opening of an account using fake identity, selling or transferring an account to unauthorized persons, purchasing or using an account without being the owner, as well as recruitment of people to open accounts for fraudulent purposes.
It also seeks the passage of the Online Site Blocking Bill to institutionalize online site blocking of websites showing pirated content.
Also part of its proposals are the issuance of an Executive Order mandating minimum information security standards for CIIs, launching a Data Unity Summit, as well as the creation of a national mobile device database and an anti-financial crimes command center.