Ketahanan Digital

By: Sonny Zulhuda


Jika ingin sukses di era digital ini, Indonesia mesti memiliki ketahanan digital yang kuat. Apa maksudnya? Artinya ruang cyber kita harus memiliki resistensi yang cukup terhadapa potensi serangan cyber yang bisa melumpuhkan integritas bangsa.

Ya, integritas bangsa Indonesia tidak bisa hanya dipertahankan melalui pengamanan darat, laut dan udara. Namun juga pengamanan ruang cybernya! Saya kasih contoh diantaranya sebagai berikut:

1. Tentang keamanan piranti (lunak dan keras) dari ancaman pengrusakan: Apakah sistem komputerisasi yang digunakan oleh berbagai sektor publik dan swasta dilengkapi dengan standardisasi pengamanan? Apakah sudah cukup SOP bagi individu yang terlibat dalam penggunaan piranti tersebut?

2. Tentang integritas sistem komunikasi kita dari ancaman penyusupan; Apakah sistem telekomunikasi kita aman dari penyadapan pihak-pihak yang tidak bertanggungjawab?

3. Tentang ketahanan data publik dan privat dari ancaman pembocoran; apakah kita memiliki sistem teknologis dan perundangan yang cukup untuk mencegah pencurian data, pembobolan rahasia negara dan pembajakan rahasia dagang kita?

4. Tentang keamanan dan integritas data pribadi warga Indonesia dari ancaman penyalahgunaan; apakah sistem data e-KTP kita aman dan baik-baik saja? Siapakah yang menyimpan data serta mengontrol server back-upnya?

Tak ayal, insiden aplikasi jahat “WannaCry” baru-baru ini menjadi cambuk pedih yang mengingatkan kita, bahwa ketahanan digital menjadi sebuah keniscayaan.

Mari berbenah!


“Can my lecturer access my personal information?” – And Other Issues of Data Protection at the Higher Learning Institutions 

By: Sonny Zulhuda 

In the past week alone, I spoke about the personal data protection law at two Malaysian public universities; Universiti Sultan Zainal Abidin (UniSZA) Kuala Terengganu and Universiti Malaysia Pahang (UMP) Pekan. While the former was an internal programme, the latter talk was attended by other public universities’representatives who were members of Majlis Tatatertib dan Disiplin Universiti-universiti Awam Malaysia (MATDUM).

In this post, I would like to note some discussions we had on the implementation of the Personal Data Protection Act 2010 at the University environment.


The education industry is indeed among those where personal information is highly processed. The data subjects include students (prospective, actual and graduates), university’s employees, as well as any individuals involved in the data processing.

Continue reading

Data Sovereignty vs Data Localisation Law

By: Sonny Zulhuda

Transferring personal data beyond national boundaries has been a point of contention under many data protection laws across the globe. The European Union adopts this restriction that such transfer beyond EU boundaries cannot be done unless to the countries or places which have adequate protection on personal data of individuals.

Cloud-Data-SecurityThis rule is associated with the concept of “Data Sovereignty” which says that a country shall not lose a control or sovereignty over the processing of personal data pertaining to data subjects from that country. It also imposes that information which has been stored in digital form is subject to the laws of the country in which it is located. Therefore, a control over trans-border data flow is a form of upholding data sovereignty.

The concept of Data Sovereignty is reflected in the EU Data Protection Directives 1995 recitals whereas:

  • cross-border flows of personal data are necessary to the expansion of international trade;
  • the protection of individuals guaranteed in the Community by this Directive does not stand in the way of transfers of personal data to third countries which ensure an adequate level of protection;
  • the transfer of personal data to a third country which does not ensure an adequate level of protection must be prohibited.

As much as we are concerned with personal data transferred beyond our border, we also appreciate that personal data is inherently needed for the International trade and International cooperation. Hence, when a personal data is subject to trans-border flow, there shall be no discriminatory treatment to the citizen’s personal data despite where it is processed.

Data Localisation Law

This data sovereignty is sometimes confused with the rules of “Data Localisation”, which is totally a different thing. Data localisation laws set forth requirements to keep and store data “locally” (i.e., within national or regional borders), and thus not allowing data users to transfer data beyond borders. Consequently, any foreign party who wishes to collect or process personal data of individuals will be required to establish a local data storage facilities in the country of those individuals. Continue reading

Social Media Policy and Regulation: A Network Governance Perspective

By: Sonny Zulhuda

The above is the name of the event in Tsinghua University, Beijing, on December 3-4, 2016, where I came as a speaker to the audience consisted of law, media and Internet governance academia and practitioners. Both Beijing-based School of Journalism and Communication of Tsinghua University and the School of Communication of Hong Kong Baptist University (HKBU) jointly organised this event.

The invitation came to me through Dr. Yik Chan Chin of the HKBU, who is with me at the Global Internet Governance Academic Network (GigaNet). Upon few exchanges of emails, I was then invited to come and present my views on the social media regulations in the Malaysian perspective. I must say that the event was really a rewarding experience; filled with substantial discussions, new perspectives and, of course, new friends and network!


This can be highlighted from the list of the speakers of the two-day workshop: Continue reading

Open Government and Cyber Security in Malaysia

By: Sonny Zulhuda

Open government is the notion that allows transparency of governments in running matters pertinent to public interests. According to that concept, the government shall allow its citizens an access to government documents and a right to obtaining information relating to public matters.

In Malaysia recently, the Open Government initiative was represented in the Public Sector Open Data Portal programme which was launched in September 2015 by MAMPU, a Unit under the Prime Minister’s Department. It declares that the aim of such initiative is to open and share government data to public and hence to enhance transparency and efficiency of government and to create a digital innovativeness.


With this background, the question of how the Government deals with the increasing demand of freedom of information and other challenges ranging from personal data to the government data security is worth examining. I was invited to talk about this at an international conference hosted by Sydney Cyber Security Network, the University of Sydney, Australia. In my presentation, I highlighted a recent initiative of open data in Malaysian public sector and the related challenges on data security, privacy and information surveillance.

I was also looking at the recent developments in Malaysia relating to the enactment of personal data protection law and recent policies relating to critical infrastructure protection. Lessons from cases and incidents surrounding information security and personal data breaches were discussed to trigger discussions on relevant solutions and best practice.

Among the key summary of my talk in Sydney was as following:

  • Open Government is underway, but more economically-motivated and narrowly looked at “open data”. A long way to the “open government”.
  • Cyber security governance enhances the security of data in the Malaysian cyberspace. However:
  • There is a striking imbalance in the legal framework between the protection of secret on one hand, and the freedom of information on the other.
  • The data privacy law boosts the transparency in the private & commercial sector, but it is a missed opportunity for an open government.
  • The open government initiative needs to be supported as national agenda, to be backed by a stronger law and national policy.

Cyber Security in the Era of Open Government: A note from the University of Sydney

By: Sonny Zulhuda

I was honored to be invited by the University of Sydney to talk about this on November 2016. The event, called “Cyber Security in the Era of Open Government”, sought to identify innovative solutions for improving the security of open government services and their users. 

Several keynoters were invited to provide for the best practices from the public and private sectors, both locally and internationally on issues surrounding the cyber security challenges associated with increasing citizens’ access to government data. The preview of the program can be traced in the USyd’s website page here.

The conference was split up into 3 thematic panels:

1. Open Government and Cyber Security in Australia. Three renowned personalities from Australian regulators spoke, namely Tim Pilgrim (Acting Australian Information Commissioner and Australian Privacy Commissioner); Elizabeth Tydd, (NSW Information Commissioner and Head of the Information and Privacy Commission); and Rolf Green, who was the Director of Information, ICT and Digital Government Division, Australian Department of Finance, Services and Innovation.

2. Open Government from Global Perspectives. In this session, I spoke alongside with an American Charles Bell, CEO of Startup Policy Lab (SPL); Dr. Janet Xu, Associate Researcher of the University of Oxford; and the Canadian Dr Khaled El Emam, himself a Professor at the University of Ottawa. I also like to note that this session was chaired by my friend Dr Adam Molnar, a lecturer in criminology at the Deakin University, Victoria, Australia.

3. Privacy, Surveillance and Government Services. This afternoon session presented a speakers from a diverse background, namely Dr. Elizabeth Coombs, NSW Privacy Commissioner; Professor Fleur Johns, Associate Dean (Research) UNSW; Bernard Keane, Crikey’s political editor.

Cerdas Digital (1)


Oleh: Sonny Zulhuda

Sejak masyarakat disibukkan berbagai isu terutama di alam maya dan media sosial, ada beberapa hal yang perlu kita perhatikan dalam hal pergaulan digital kita. Yuk kita introspeksi.

Tanpa disadari, kita sering menyebarkan informasi tanpa meyakini validitas isi berita tersebut. Yang lucunya, kadang2 di ujung pesan tersebut ditambahkan dengan kata2: “apakah info ini valid/benar?” hehee.. Alih-alih ingin verifikasi, yang terjadi malah menyebarkan rumor, fitnah atau disinformasi publik.

Kalau memang ingin klarifikasi, ya jangan ‘nafsu’ langsung forward, apalagi kalau sdh berubah niat supaya dianggap ‘lebih update’  atau ‘punya koneksi’ (na’udzu billah)..

Jika pesan itu berupa pernyataan seorang tokoh masyarakat, maka sebaiknya ditanyakan dulu secara khusus ke pihak2 terkait baik sumbernya langsung, ataupun orang2 terdekatnya. Jangan langsung dilempar ke group! Itukan sama saja menyebar gosip ya ikhwan 🙂

Jika pesan itu berupa tautan/link ke sebuah sumber di Internet, maka kita bisa cek dan baca dulu link itu. Jangan2, lain di judul lain di isinya. Atau bisa jadi itu berita lama yg kebetulan dicocok2in dengan isu2 baru. Kalau rasanya masih blm yakin (misalnya karena kita meragui media penerbit berita tsb) maka kita bisa lakukan perbandingan berita secara simple, dengan melakukan Google search uyk keywordnya (kata2 kuncinya). Dari situ kita bisa ukur sejauh mana akurasi dan kredibilitas pemberitaan tsb.

Jika kita tidak bisa melakukan klarifikasi dan verifikasi diatas. Jangan lupa gunakan akal sehat dan common sense! Exercise your honest judgment. Malah kadang2, filter akurasi jika dikombinasikan dengan filter akal sehat akan semakin meningkatkan pertimbangan kita: yaitu filter kepatutan. Pertanyaannya nanti, tidak hanya ‘benar atau tidak’ tapi sudah menjadi ‘patut atau tidak saya sebarkan?’..’ perlu atau tidak saya share?’ Kadang pertanyaan ini sering luput dari pertimbangan kita.
Jika filter-filter diatas (akurasi dan kepatutan) sudah luput, maka yang terjadi adalah rentetan upaya klarifikasi dan koreksi atas pesan yang sudah terlanjur menyebar. Jika kelalaian ini terjadi pada anda, maka yang harus anda lakukan:

1. Segera sampaikan koreksi pesan tsb;

2. Mohon maaf atas pencatutan narasumber yang salah, dan

3. Mohon semua anggota group yg sudah ikut menyebarkan agar mengoreksinya juga di group2 mereka masing2.

Kok repot ya? Ngga repot kok, kita cuma perlu lebih cerdas digital saja. Jangan hanya hp kita yg ‘smart’, tp penggunanya juga harus ‘naik kelas’ hehe.. Gitu ya MasBro dan MbakSis..
Mari kita tunjukkan bahwa kita bukan robot alias buzzer digital, tapi kita adalah pengguna medsos yg berakhlak dan berkemajuan. Kemenangan bukan pada hasil, tapi lebih pada upaya menuju hasil itu.

Pesan medsos kita juga akan dipertanggungjawabkan kelak. Disitulah Allah sudah mengingatkan (mgkin tafsir progresifnya ‘menyindir’ – bukan benang merahnya ya) bahwa sesungguhnya “pendengaranmu, penglihatanmu, dan suara hatimu” (yg terakhir ini pas untuk ujaran digital kita) semuanya akan ditanyakan kelak tentang apa yg diperbuatnya.
Ayooo.. kerja lagi 🙂

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