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What does the Internet Engineering Task Force (IETF) do?

Harish Pillay, Past President of the Singapore Chapter and current Internet Society Board Member, explains in this video what the Internet Engineering Task Force is all about. Original website (Singapore Computer Society) link





Roundtable on upcoming Cybersecurity Act

Following up from our earlier roundtable on Singapore’s upcoming Cybersecurity Act, we co-organized another session with Singapore Computer Society and NTUC to discuss the proposed sections of the law, and to give feedback for the drafting of the Act. The key topics are
(1)    Management of and response to cyber threats
(2)    Protection of Critical Information Infrastructure
(3)    Sharing of cybersecurity information with and by regulators
(4)   Other areas/need for standards  
Date: Friday 3 March 2017
Time: 19:00 – 21:00
Venue: NTUC Centre Level 7, Room 701 No 1 Marina Boulevard Singapore 018989

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10 Tips for Data Privacy Day


Source: The Internet Society.

January 28 – Data privacy day


Online harassment and cyber bullying are real. And, some groups, such as women, are targeted more than others. Sadly, who you are affects how you are treated by others online, as well as offline.

A powerful way to counter online abuse, threats and violence is to share our knowledge with each other. So, to mark this year’s International Data Privacy Day, the Internet Society would like to share with you 10 tips to protect yourself and others online:

Know the terrain. The Internet is a powerful tool for communication. Learn how to use the Internet, keep your eyes open for good and bad actors, and make the most of what the Internet offers.

Keep your private life private. Keep your personal information separate from your professional role. Use different personas for different roles.

Protect communications. Use end-to-end encryption and two-factor authentication for confidential communications.

Obscure your location. Remove location data from images and videos before posting. Turn off application access to location. Don’t disclose your location in public posts.

Guard your devices. They’re more precious than any jewels. Protect them from both physical and digital tampering. Use encryption and strong access credentials.

Prepare for an attack. Find allies and prepare a plan for dealing with online harassment, doxing and other forms of abuse. Don’t feed the trolls! They don’t deserve your attention.

Stand firm. Don’t let cyber bullies undermine what you are doing. Show them you are not afraid. Others will stand with you. Be willing to ask for help.

Beware of Trojan horses. Look out for spear-phishers. Check before connecting with someone new. If something seems too good to be true, it probably isn’t!

Lead. Share your experience with others. Let people know that you are there to help.

Protect others. If you host user-generated content, prevent users from posting derogatory or other abusive messages. Help remove personal information that has been exposed to hurt someone. Report offenders

Share these tips with someone close to you!

And don’t sit by when you see abuse on social media. Offer a helping hand.

Feedback Session on Cybersecurity Act

What can we expect from Singapore’s new, standalone Cybersecurity Act coming this year?
What are some clarifications or improvements we could suggest, or fresh ideas to contribute?
Join our panel of experts, Sarbojit Bose, Jay Nagarajan (Education Chair), Magda Chelly and Indranil Mukherjee (Vice President), moderated by Benjamin Ck Ang (Programme Chair), to learn more and to share your frank views on the following areas:
(1) Management of and response to cyber threats
(2) Protection of Critical Information Infrastructure
(3) Sharing of cybersecurity information with and by regulators
(4) Gaps and needs for standards
We look forward to seeing you at the discussion and hearing your views.
Admission is free for all ISOC Members.
Thurs 19 January 2017, 7.30pm · 25A Smith St, Singapore
To find out how to become a Member, or to RSVP, please comment on our Facebook Event

Give your Feedback: Discussion on amendments to Copyright Act

Here’s how you can contribute to the proposed changes to the Singapore Copyright Act

Singapore chapter of the Internet Society and Creative Commons conducted a consultation feedback session on the consultation for amendments to the Singapore Copyright Act. Read more about the changes on the Ministry of Law website.

How you can participate

  1. Read the draft replies that we will be sending to IPOS in this document
  2. If you want more details, watch this video where IP lawyers and academics Byron Xavier, Warren Chik, Bryan Ghows, Bryan Tan (President, Internet Society Singapore Chapter), and Lam Chung Nian and Ivan Chew of Creative Commons Singapore, take us through some of the areas being contemplated
  3. E-mail us your feedback [email protected] by Friday 21 October 2016

You can download the Consultation Paper (link here)



Finally Independent: Internet Assigned Numbers Authority (IANA), ICANN and DNS

Over the weekend, despite the misconceptions of some politicians and their followers, the US government let the IANA (Internet Assigned Numbers Authority) contract lapse, and non-profit organization ICANN (Internet Corporation for Assigned Names and Numbers) will now ensure independence in the operation of maintaining DNS core files, ensuring internet device addresses work globally and cataloging details of protocols that define how internet communications take place.


What the IANA and ICANN transition means (and doesn’t mean)


ICANN has explained that this transition will ensure the internet of tomorrow remains as free, open and accessible as the internet of today.  Although some US politicians (Senator Ted Cruz) mistakenly believe that autocratic governments from China, Russia and the Middle East could somehow take control over the Internet and censor content, ICANN has explained that this will not happen because “ICANN is a technical organization and does not have the remit or ability to regulate content on the internet”.  ICANN policy is decided by ‘multi-stakeholderism’ where all interested parties, from governments to engineers to corporations to domain name owners, can have a say.

“The IANA ( Internet Assigned Numbers Authority) transition marks an important milestone in Internet Governance, and as Internet usage is expected to touch 4 billion by the end of 2016, creates the foundation for ‘multi-stakeholderism’ in keeping with the Internet Society’s mission of Internet for everyone” – Indranil Mukherjee, Vice-President, Internet Society Singapore Chapter

One fact remains the same: “There is nothing about ICANN or its contract with the US government that prevents a country from censoring or blocking content within its own borders” However, the structure of the internet means that (for example) China cannot block the content within the USA’s borders.

Singapore’s role in the IANA transition

The Internet Society Singapore Chapter was part of this transition, as coordinator of the secretariat.

“It’s not a well-known story but Singapore has played a supporting role in the IANA. The last Forum on the White Paper (FWP), the final meeting of the Internet community in its attempt at Internet governance was held here; and so was the first ICANN meeting. ISOC.SG’s role as Secretariat in the Transition deliberations completes the process. It’s wonderful to know that we have contributed a universal good.” – Prof Ang Peng Hwa, Past President, Internet Society Singapore Chapter

“This marks an important step into a greater level of participation in the Internet and with greater power, comes greater responsibility. The ISOC Singapore chapter is proud to have played a role on coordinating the secretariat for this process.” – Bryan Tan, President, Internet Society Singapore Chapter

The Future of Internet Governance

The global headquarters of the Internet Society has congratulated global the Internet community on successful IANA stewardship transition. In particular, the Internet Society endorses that the “best approach to address challenges is through bottom-up, transparent, and consensus-driven processes”.

“It is very satisfying to be able to see the successful conclusion of the transition of IANA stewardship. IANA has a long and wonderful heritage and the critical functioning of the role is important for the Internet to continue to bring the value to all of us.”, Harish Pillay, Board of Trustees, Internet Society.

While it is disconcerting that some politicians today might base their actions on a fundamental misunderstanding of the issues involved in Internet Governance, we hope that more members of the public in every country, their elected officials, and policy makers, will take some time to learn what is actually happening in the IANA transition and ICANN. We recommend you read these reputable news sources



AGC and IPOS move to ensure copyright holders do not abuse process


The story so far: Last year, lawyers had issued letters threatening criminal proceedings, fines, and prison, against Internet users who they accused of pirating the film Dallas Buyers Club. We (Internet Society Singapore Chapter) formally complained to the Law Society of Singapore that these threats are not allowed under the Law Society’s Practice Directions here. These Internet users are innocent until proven guilty and should be allowed to use the Internet without fear –  details  at this page

The Law Society reviewed the claim and directed that the lawyers “should be given a warning, reprimand or order to pay a penalty of not more than S$10,000” – details at this page

This year, lawyers representing the same rights owners started legal proceedings in respect of two more films, Queen Of The Desert and Fathers And Daughters, and applied to Court to make ISP’s disclose identities linked to Internet protocol (IP) addresses. This is despite recent cases that have ruled that IP addresses do not sufficiently identify which individuals committed copyright infringement, but may belong to innocent home or business owners. Therefore we wrote an op-ed in The Straits Times on August 20, 2016, with the headline ‘Don’t punish innocent Internet users

Now, the Intellectual Property Office of Singapore (IPOS) and the Attorney-General’s Chambers (AGC) are applying to the courts to intervene in these proceedings to ensure a fair process, which may include reviewing the letters of demand to prevent abusive practices

“Abusive practices include “speculative invoicing”, also known as “copyright trolling”, where a party pursues quick settlements from alleged copyright infringers, by launching legal action against them and taking advantage of their reluctance to pursue their rights fully before the courts, said IPOS.”

You can read the full details published in TODAY news, Authorities move to ensure illegal downloaders get fair processalthough we respectfully suggest that the headline could be ‘Authorities move to ensure copyright owners do not abuse innocent Internet users’

The Internet Society (Singapore) has played a modest role in this, as noted in the article

“[Last year] the Internet Society (Singapore) filed a complaint with the Law Society of Singapore (LawSoc), alleging that [the lawyers] had issued letters threatening criminal proceedings against the alleged downloaders, to advance the civil claims. This goes against the LawSoc’s Practice Directions and Rulings Guide … In May, LawSoc said it was taking action against two lawyers over their conduct in dealing with illegal downloaders of Dallas Buyers Club … Intellectual property lawyers who spoke to TODAY welcomed it as a move to ensure a fair process.”

We will continue to watch this case closely and we welcome your feedback as Internet users.

Trust on the Internet (Roundtable) – Video and Photos from InterCommunity 2016

We were at the Wee Kim Wee School of Communication and Information, NTU, on Wednesday 21 September between 12 noon to 6 pm, to discuss the challenges of Restoring and Building Trust in the Internet with the international Internet Society community.

Some members also watched us streaming on Facebook Live at

Photos and Video

Scenes from Internet Society chapters all over the Asia Pacific

First video

Second video

Announcement of the event

What are the challenges in Restoring and Building Trust in the Internet? Join us at InterCommunity 2016 to learn and share.

InterCommunity 2016 will be a hybrid (physical and virtual) meeting of the Internet Society community, harnessing and exemplifying the use of the global Internet to bring people together to interact and engage around a set of important topics. Internet Society Singapore Chapter will be hosting an Interactive Node at NTU where you will have full audio/video interactivity with the other interactive nodes around the world

Where: Small Studio (#B1-05)
Wee Kim Wee School of Communication and Information
Nanyang Technological University
31 Nanyang Link
Singapore 637718
When: Wednesday 21 Sep 2016, 12.30pm – 6.00pm

Registration starts at 12pm.

Admission is FREE but you must PRE-REGISTER at this link



Local discussion PRIOR to the Intra-Regional Session

Start Time: 4.30 UTC
End Time: 5.30 UTC
These local discussions will invite chapter leaders, members and node attendees to organize focused debate between themselves. These deliberations will be built around questions, which will be provided to each node (based on node topic). Each node will be supplied a set of questions by ISOC APAC which would be addressed during the local discussion.
How best to format the local discussion will be decided by each node, and this will be discussed and agreed to with them in advance of the day. The node will require a local scribe to take notes of important points raised during the local discussion. The summary of this conversation will serve as a guide and starting point for the Intra-Regional Session. The node has to identify a moderator / speaker who will present this summary.
The local discussion will stop at 5.30 UTC, each node will have a break of 30 minutes – and prepare itself (mainly technically) for the Intra-Regional session.

The Intra-Regional Session

Start Time: 6.00 UTC
End Time: 7.45 UTC
Each Node will join the Intra-Regional Session via a zoom link that will enable full audio/video interactivity with the other nodes. Zoom details will be provided to each node.
Building on local discussions, and the set of questions that will be provided to each node, this session will involve a moderated panel discussion between all regional nodes. Each node will arrange two local discussants/experts (based on node topic), one moderator who will direct and guide the local panel discussion and one co-moderator who will facilitate questions from local participants. Questions and comments should be limited to 60 seconds in order to allow fair participation. This should be made known to the community before the opening of the Q&A. In addition, there will be an Inter-regional moderator (ISOC staff) who will introduce the proceedings, keep the discussions on time and facilitate the intraregional

For Social media channels and online participants, ISOC APAC will appoint 4 online curators, who will monitor social media as well as zoom chat to consolidate key questions from online participants / social media. These questions will be passed on to the Inter-regional moderator, who will address the questions to the relevant local node(s).
Like in previous session, all nodes will have a scribe who will capture the content of the conversation in writing or visual format.
The session will stop at 7.40 UTC, each node will have a break of 20 minutes- and prepare itself (mainly technically) for the Global session.
Important: Interactive nodes should have a final list of Discussants/experts,
Moderators, Co-Moderator and Scribe no later than September 14 and submit them
to ISOC APAC so that the Intra-regional moderator has this list in advance.

The Global Session

Start Time: 8.00 UTC
End Time: 10.00 UTC

Interactive Nodes

Each Interactive Node will join Global Session via a zoom link that will enable full audio/video interactivity with the other interactive nodes. One of the 5 Interactive nodes will serve as host node. This node will have the Global session moderator who will facilitate and lead the discussions between interactive nodes. The two local SMEs/discussants (who participated in the previous session) will represent the node.

Viewing Nodes

Viewing nodes will join the Global Session via the Digitell Player. They will not have
interaction with the audience via audio/video.

Social Q&A

For the global sessions, there will be only one way for node participants to ask questions – via the Conference i/o social Q&A. Participants will enter their questions into the Social Q&A screen and all other participants will have the opportunity to vote for every question. Those questions receiving the highest vote tally when the SMEs are taking questions will be the ones that are addressed. Non-English speakers are invited to type their questions into the Social Q&A in one of the five languages (see below). The question will then be translated into English for all to vote.

Why InterCommunity?

• Unify the Internet Society community behind our shared global vision
• Showcase the Internet as a powerful tool to create engagement and connections across distance and time
• Create a “moment” for our global community of members to meet, share, and connect

InterCommunity 2016 Objectives

• Create a community connection to ISOC’s 2016 Strategic Objectives Connecting the Unconnected and Restoring and Building Trust in the Internet – using the campaigns to share the success stories of our Chapters and Members
• Position our Trustees as leading voices of our community, from our community – by hosting Trustees at Interactive Nodes
• Provide an opportunity for community engagement on a global project – Future Internet Scenarios
• Generate excitement for our rebranding effort and upcoming 25th Anniversary
• Celebrate the Internet Society community – have fun!

Overall Event Structure

I. A local roundtable type discussion PRIOR to the Inter-Regional Session
II. The Intra-Regional Session
III. The Global Session

Overall Theme:

“Connecting the Unconnected’ and ‘Restoring and Building Trust in the Internet’.

Register here to be part of InterCommunity 2016

New Exco 2016-2017 and Report for 2016

Our friends from the Institute of Policy Studies also presented the findings of their research, Normalization versus Equalization Effects of the Internet for Political Parties: Singapore’s General Election 2015 as a Case Studysee the video here


President  Bryan Tan
Vice President  Indranil Mukherjee
Secretary  Lim May-Ann
Treasurer  Sofia Morales
Education Chair  Jay Nagarajan
Programme Chair  Benjamin Ang
Other- roles: Ext/ International Liaison:
Peng Hwa
Honorary Auditors 1. Yvonne Lim

2. Tay Wei Kiang

3. Sanjeev Gupta


We congratulate the new Executive Committee of the Singapore Chapter. Left to right: Sanjeev, May-Ann, Sofia, Indy, Ben, Peng Hwa, Yvonne, Bryan, Jay, Harish

We congratulate the new Executive Committee of the Singapore Chapter. Left to right: Sanjeev, May-Ann, Sofia, Indy, Ben, Peng Hwa, Yvonne, Bryan, Jay, Harish

Here is the slide deck for the report on our chapter’s activities for 2016 – 2016, and projected activities for 2016 – 2017


Comment on potential action by film studio against innocent Internet users

The rights owners of two Hollywood movies (Queen Of The Desert and Fathers And Daughters) have started legal proceedings against illegal downloaders here and are seeking pretrial disclosure of Internet protocol (IP) addresses. In an unusual move, the Attorney-General’s Chambers has indicated that it will oversee the process to prevent abuse. Our Internet Society (Singapore Chapter) has also contributed to the discussion on this action.

Last year, we (Internet Society Singapore Chapter) formally complained to the Law Society of Singapore that two lawyers (from the same law firm in the current matter) had issued letters threatening criminal proceedings, fines and prison, against people who they accused of pirating the film Dallas Buyers Club. This type of threat is not allowed under the Law Society’s Practice Directions here. You can read our detailed reasons and the complaint at this page. We also conducted a workshop to educate the public:  Copyright End User Infringement Workshop: A view from both sides of the fence

The Law Society of Singapore replied that their inquiry committee has decided that a formal investigation by a disciplinary tribunal is not necessary, but the lawyers “should be given a warning, reprimand or order to pay a penalty of not more than S$10,000”. More details are available in this news report from the TODAY newspaper

Now that the same law firm appears to be starting similar legal proceedings again, we have written to the national newspapers to share our views and concerns. A version of the article below appeared in the print edition of The Straits Times on August 20, 2016, with the headline ‘Don’t punish innocent Internet users‘.

Don’t punish innocent Internet users

The Internet Society (Singapore Chapter) views with concern and interest the various news reports that the rights owners of two Hollywood movies – Queen Of The Desert and Fathers And Daughters – have started legal proceedings against illegal downloaders here and are seeking pretrial disclosure of Internet protocol (IP) addresses.

While we do not condone copyright infringement, we are concerned that a potentially large number of lawsuits may be filed on the basis of IP addresses sought.

Recent cases from other jurisdictions have ruled that IP addresses do not sufficiently identify which individuals committed copyright infringement.

It is entirely plausible that some of the IP addresses may belong to innocent home or business owners who were not aware that their IP addresses were used or who may have not secured their networks sufficiently at the material time.

We question the fairness of subjecting them to the stress and cost in time and money of defending themselves against legal claims.

We are pleased that the Attorney-General’s Chambers has indicated that it will oversee the process to prevent abuse (“AGC steps in as studios seek illegal downloaders“; Wednesday).

We note also that our previous complaint to the Law Society regarding letters of demand sent to alleged downloaders of the movie Dallas Buyers Club resulted in the Law Society finding that the letters sent by the law firm did infringe the Law Society’s ethical standard, by threatening criminal proceedings, fines and prison time against people who they accused of pirating that film.

The Law Society’s findings imposed a penalty of $10,000 or reprimand upon the law firm.

Since the acts of those lawyers in question were adjudged to have crossed acceptable boundaries, we have asked the Law Society to advise on the status of the alleged infringers.

A clear determination by the Law Society may help delineate the boundaries of acceptable conduct by lawyers and law firms here.

Finally, while the rights holders appear to be preparing to sue individuals, we suggest using the blocking provisions that were added to the Singapore Copyright Act last year. They are a self-help remedy to stop massively infringing sites, and will avoid mistakenly targeting innocent Internet users.

In conclusion, while we support the rights of copyright owners, we urge caution so that innocent Internet users are not adversely affected by their actions.

Ang Peng Hwa (Professor)
Internet Society (Singapore Chapter)

A version of this article appeared in the print edition of The Straits Times on August 20, 2016, with the headline ‘Don’t punish innocent Internet users‘.