GISEC Global 2024 – Speaker Questionnaire

How did your cybersecurity journey crossed paths with the automotive industry, and when did you realize you’d like to pursue a career in this field?

Since my younger days, I have held a passion for car racing, which was cultivated through exposure to vehicle tuning and vehicle modifications. I also loved playing computer games at a young age whereby my first encounter with malware sparked my curiosity about cybersecurity.

Recognizing the synergy between my interests in vehicle racing and cybersecurity, I embarked on the establishment of a specialized interest group dedicated to automotive security within the local Singaporean community. This initiative aims to provide a platform for cybersecurity enthusiasts, professionals, and students to converge, fostering collaborative research and exploration into automotive cybersecurity.

What are the biggest risks and vulnerabilities in the future of the automotive industry you’re helping to avert with your work when it comes to user safety?

With the rising adoption of Fleet Management Systems (FMS) and Charging Management Systems (CMS), the emergence of risks and vulnerabilities is an inevitable consequence of our transition toward Autonomous and Electric vehicles. In addition to conducting vulnerability research and security testing, our services encompass assisting companies in developing and establishing comprehensive policies and standards. This includes the formulation of prescribed security controls aimed at fortifying the integrity of FMS and CMS systems.

Which technologies will be critical to automotive cybersecurity in the next 5 years?

I would say that there are numerous technologies are pivotal to automotive cybersecurity, among which the following stand out:

Intrusion Detection Prevention Systems (IDPS) and the creation of Vehicle Security Operations Center (VSOC) which helps to continuously monitor the in-vehicle network for any abnormal behavior or unauthorized access attempts, enabling timely detection and prevention of cyber threats.

Implementation of Secure Over-The-Air (OTA) updates mechanism to help ensure that software patches and updates are delivered safely to vehicles without the risk of tampering or unauthorized access as well as saving time to not travel to the dealership to update patches, thereby addressing potential vulnerabilities promptly.

Utilizing blockchain technology can enhance the security of automotive systems by providing tamper-proof and transparent record-keeping of data transactions and vehicle-related information. It can prevent unauthorized access and ensure data integrity.

Inspire | Conference Track | Women in Cybersecurity

What key lessons have you learned as a woman and an ethical hacker in the cybersecurity industry?

As a woman in cybersecurity, I've encountered various challenges and opportunities for growth. One key lesson I've learned is the importance of stepping up and being a trailblazer in this field. It's essential to embrace the role of a pioneer and pave the way for other women interested in cybersecurity.

Another valuable lesson is not to be afraid to ask for help and seeking support when needed. Cybersecurity is a vast and complex domain, and seeking guidance and support from peers, mentors, and industry experts can be immensely beneficial. Collaboration and knowledge-sharing are integral to success in this field.

Furthermore, perseverance is key. In the face of obstacles and setbacks, it's crucial to remain resilient and never give up on your goals and aspirations. The journey in ethical hacking may be challenging at times, but staying determined and persistent can lead to rewarding outcomes and personal growth.

From your experience, what are the major barriers for young women to act as ethical hackers?

Having a space where you can freely ask questions and learn together is crucial. It can feel daunting, especially in a vast field like cybersecurity, with its multitude of roles. Sometimes it's hard to know where to begin.

For many young women, there might be a sense of not getting the support, recognition, and validation they deserve for their contributions to cybersecurity.

In addition, the lack of inclusive recognition programs, awards, and opportunities for professional growth can amplify feelings of being sidelined, which can dampen enthusiasm for pursuing a career in ethical hacking.

And let's not forget imposter syndrome, which is something that affects me greatly as well – the worry of not being seen as “being good enough”, or belonging in the field can discourage them from exploring opportunities in ethical hacking.

To what extent can enterprises and governments create more opportunities for women in this industry?

I feel that more opportunities can be created by putting in more investments in Education and Training such as providing funding for programs that encourage women to pursue STEM and cybersecurity studies. This could mean scholarships, grants, or sponsorships for women seeking degrees or certifications in these fields. Also, offer specialized training in cutting-edge technologies like AI and ML to equip women with the skills needed for cybersecurity roles. As well as partnerships with the industries as well such as offering Internships and Mentorships to allow more women hands-on experience, opportunities to network with industry professionals, and guidance from seasoned leaders in the field. Also, provide more recognition to celebrate women’s successes by highlighting women's achievements to showcase the successes of women in cybersecurity through media campaigns, conferences, and industry events. Finally, by supporting women entrepreneurs by provide financial support, mentorship, and networking opportunities for women-owned cybersecurity businesses and start-ups. This could involve offering grants, loans, or incubator programs specifically designed to help women entrepreneurs thrive in the industry.

You were recognized as one of the Top 30 women in Security in ASEAN. How do you see your role in encouraging more women to join the field?

One of my primary objectives is to inspire and empower other women to pursue careers in this field and join the cybersecurity community. Having embarked on my own journey in cybersecurity, I understand first-hand the importance of mentorship and support networks for women navigating this industry.

I firmly believe in the power of representation and visibility. By actively engaging with and advocating for women in cybersecurity, I strive to serve as a role model and source of encouragement for aspiring female professionals. Through my experiences, insights, and accomplishments, I aim to demonstrate that women can excel in cybersecurity and thrive in diverse roles within the industry.

Moreover, I am committed to fostering a supportive environment where women feel valued, respected, and empowered to pursue their career aspirations in cybersecurity. Whether through mentorship programs, networking events, or collaborative initiatives, I am dedicated to providing guidance, mentorship, and resources to help women succeed and thrive in this dynamic and rewarding field.

Looking at Women in Cybersecurity, what are your views on the growth of women’s participation and leadership in the industry in Asia and the Middle East?

It is heartening to observe the growing presence of women in leadership roles within the Asian cybersecurity industry, complemented by recognition awards and platforms designed to highlight those who have shattered the glass ceiling.

Similarly, notable initiatives in the Middle East, such as the GISEC conference, feature dedicated stages for Women in Cybersecurity, providing a platform for showcasing their talents and serving as an inspiration for other women in the field.

I hope that we can build a stronger, more vibrant cybersecurity community that reflects the diversity of talent and perspectives essential for addressing the complex challenges of our digital age.

What are your expectations to step on the stage of GISEC Global for the first time this April?

Stepping onto the stage of GISEC Global for the first time this April fills me with anticipation and enthusiasm. I see this opportunity as a platform to not only present our research and test bench on a global scale but also to engage with professionals from diverse backgrounds and regions worldwide.

In addition, networking with industry experts and thought leaders from around the globe presents an invaluable chance to exchange ideas, forge connections, and contribute to the collective advancement of cybersecurity knowledge and practice.

Overall, I am eagerly looking forward to leveraging this platform to share insights, gain new perspectives, and make meaningful contributions to the cybersecurity community on a global stage.