The Starfish and the Spider

By: Sonny Zulhuda

“The Starfish and the Spider”, or so we were told about ICANN‘s uniqueness by Rod Beckstorm. This is also the title of the book by Rod, the CEO of ICANN, and his co-author that was generously given out to all the Fellows in one of the ICANN’s Fellowship meetings. I did not have chance to grab him after the forum and to get him sign on the book. But here I want to say a big THANKS for the beautiful gift!

The ICANN’s CEO deliberated about how ICANN works as a ‘bottom-up’, decentralized and multi-stakeholders organization. Even though this has been repeatedly mentioned by many previous speakers, to me his presentation wraps up the whole idea of how ICANN has been working.

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ICANN Fellowship – Notes and Nodes

By: Sonny Zulhuda (an ICANN Fellow)

Twenty-three fellows, from twenty countries, of five continents, of diverse background and affiliations, met and gathered in one room called Morrison in Raffles City Convention Centre, Singapore every 7-9 morning from 19th to 24th June 2011.

Under the mentoring of one passionate soul Janice, they intensively learned about a new world famously known for its administration and management of the world’s Internet, and infamously known for its excessive use of acronyms and abbreviations (wink) — ICANN (well.. the Internet Corporation for Assigned Names and Numbers, that’s it). Uuh.. about the excessive acronyms, thank God they created the portal, see it here. ^_^

The ICANN Fellowship is indeed more than just the dawn meeting routine. In fact, in every day in the whole week, there were approximately not less than a dozen meetings, briefings or discussions that may go parallel to ensure the fellows are kept busy. At few occasions some fellows (like me) tried to make use of the Remote Participation facility to grab two or more discussions at once — which ended un-impressively mainly due to our incapability to basically follows two things at one time.

But we are all certain that this Remote Participation facility is there not without a reason. There are times where one could not be there but is willing to follow the discussion, retrieve the materials or even ask questions. And that is what has happened, efficiently! Isn’t that awesome?

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The Problems of Identity Theft in Malaysia in the Light of the Personal Data Protection (PDP) Act 2010: A Hope Rejuvenated?

By: Sonny Zulhuda

Nope, this is not (yet) a ready paper. It’s an ongoing research that I am now conducting, funded by an internal research grant. It takes as the background the revolutionary growth of the information and communications technology and its use in the storing, processing and disseminating personal information.

We all know that such phenomenon (ICT+data processing) has unveiled one huge challenge in the form of identity theft. Described as unlawful acquisitions of personal data that belongs to others, identity theft incidents are reported in Malaysian media on regular basis. The lost, stolen or compromised personal data has not become an incident of its own. Rather, it provides “ammunitions” for further action such as credit cards forgery or impersonated bank accounts that are used as a platform for further crimes.

Recently local newspapers had flooded us with news on these, such as these:

“RM4mil (Rp11.2bil) stolen within first three months”

Malaysians have lost RM4mil through phishing (identity fraud) within the first three months of the year alone. There were 457 cases recorded in the first quarter of the year, exceeding the 353 reported for the whole of last year where the victims lost a total of RM1.2mil. In 2009, only 75 cases were reported with total losses of around RM215,000. Federal Commercial Crime Investigations Department director Commissioner Datuk Syed Ismail Syed Azizan said the number of cases reported this year had reached a record high with authorities and the banking industry being almost powerless to curb it. (Click here for the report)

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