While data breaches and leakages in Singapore show a decline in 2023, some recent major attacks show that more needs to be done.

An hours-long disruption that affected the websites of Singapore’s public healthcare institutions on 1 November 2023 was caused by a distributed denial-of-service (DDoS) attack. Fortunately, there was no evidence to indicate that public healthcare data and internal networks have been compromised.

This attack came on the heels of a data breach that affected some 665,000 Marina Bay Sands members.

The reportedly “unauthorized access” that occurred on 19-20 October 2023 involved the data of non-casino Sands LifeStyle rewards program members. Personal data affected by the breach included names, email addresses, phone numbers, country of residence, as well as membership number and tier.

Following this data breach, Global Data Breach statistics by cybersecurity company Surfshark provide insights into Singapore’s overall state of data breaches so far: https://surfshark.com/research/study/data-breach-statistics-q3-2023

“On a global scale, 207 accounts are breached per 100 people on average,” commented Agneska Sablovskaja, Lead Researcher, Surfshark. “However, in Singapore, this number goes up to 562 per 100 people. Statistically speaking, an average Singaporean has been affected by data breaches around 6 times since 2004.“

However, the data also shows that, in 2023, data breaches in Singapore have been significantly declining, with the biggest decrease being in Q3, with a total of 24,000 accounts leaked in Q3, compared to 83,000 in Q2 (-71%). Q1 had 90,000 leaked accounts.

Global insights for Q3 2023 (July – September) from Surfshark include:

    • Globally, a total of 31.5M accounts were breached in Q3 2023, translating into 4 accounts being leaked every second.
    • The US ranks 1st, with 8.1M leaked accounts (26% of the total). It is followed by Russia (7.1M), France (1.6M), China (1.5M), and Mexico (1.2M).
    • A 76% decrease in breached users worldwide is seen compared to Q2 2023.
    • North America was the second most affected region by breaches in Q3 2023. Europe took the lead, while Asia was the third most breached region. All other regions comprised less than 8% of the quarter’s total.
    • The countries with the highest breach density (number of leaked accounts per 1,000 residents): Russia, France, the US, Colombia, and Malaysia.