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Philippines protects digital trading platform by implementing cybersecurity features

Philippines protects digital trading platform by implementing cybersecurity features

An announcement
made by the Department
of Finance
(DOF) highlighted on the cybersecurity features that they
are implementing on their digital trading platform, TradeNet. This platform
needs protection from unauthorised access and cyberattacks as this helps reduce
processing time and number of transactions for import and export clearances.

DOF revealed that TradeNet, a digital
trading platform having the goal of reducing both the processing time and the
number of transactions needed for import and export clearances, will be
strengthened with cybersecurity features. This is significant in protecting the
site from unauthorised access and other forms of cyberattacks.

DOF Undersecretary Gil Beltran explained
that TradeNet will undergo a series of periodic vulnerability reviews to test
its integrity.

During a recent DOF Executive Committee
(ExeCom) meeting, USec Beltran reported to DOF Secretary Carlos Dominguez III
that, “Our cybersecurity system will be implemented to provide monitoring and
continuous vigilance services for TradeNet.”

The TradeNet platform was launched last
December. It will also serve as the link of the Philippines to the ASEAN Single
Window (ASW) gateway. It is expected that with this, the costs of doing
business will be minimised. This will also aid in cutting the processing time
for the issuance of import and export permits.

The 10 member-states of the ASEAN will
benefit from the ASW gateway. Indonesia, Malaysia, Singapore and Thailand are
currently using the ASW to exchange information on customs clearances. For
other countries, they should expect that with this regional initiative, they
will be able to speed up cargo clearances and promote economic integration by
enabling the electronic exchange of border documents among themselves.

Initially, traders will be allowed to use
the TradeNet system in order to apply for import and export permits for rice;
sugar; used motor vehicles; chemicals like toluene; frozen meat; medicines for
humans, animals or fish; and cured tobacco according to USec Beltran.

The government has also launched three
parallel initiatives apart from TradeNet. Sec Dominguez earlier said that all
these initiatives are a part of their “comprehensive deployment of information
and communications technology to enhance governance efficiency.”

The first initiative is Government Cloud
Service (GovCloud) which was launched by the Department of Information and Communications
Technology
(DICT) to serve as the National Government Portal for all
government information, transactions and services. GovCloud will significantly
reduce red tape and corruption when applying for permits, clearances and other
similar documents.

The second initiative is the PHPAY platform
by the Bangko Sentral
ng Pilipinas
(BSP) to function as a centralised online payment
portal, transactions ledger and reconciliation system. PHPAY will act as an
interface between its service websites and payment facilitators, banks or
credit card gateways thus achieving an easier way for private users to pay for
permits or applications.

The third initiative is the Philippine
Business Data Bank (PBDB). This is a search engine for all registered
businesses in the country that will be made available online for government
agencies so that they can verify records for business registration and permits.
This search engine will allow easier access to information from Department of Trade and
Industry
(DTI), the Securities and Exchange Commission
(SEC), the Cooperative
Development Authority
(CDA) and the local government units.

TradeNet uses the PBDB for verifying
business information. With the help of a common database, the TradeNet platform
will eventually link 66 government agencies.

A recent
announcement explained more deeply what the PHPAY system is. It was designed to
be a secure and reliable collection system in which government clients can
transfer payments online for government services, anytime and anywhere.

An earlier
announcement explained that PBDB was launched to streamline application and
renewal of business permits through the online sharing of information among the
government agencies involved in the process.

An even earlier announcement was released
highlighting the features of GovCloud. It will use a hybrid cloud strategy
guaranteeing data security while enabling on-demand availability of storage and
computing resources.

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