ASEAN Cyber Capacity Development Project – Phase II

Proponent : Ministry of Home Affairs, Singapore
Implementing Agency : INTERPOL Global Complex for Innovation


The threat of cybercrime is both national and regional/global in nature and thus requires to be addressed in both levels. According to the United Nations Conference on Trade and Development (UNCTAD) 2013 review of e-commerce legislation harmonization in ASEAN, the challenges to the enactment/enforcement of cybercrime legislation were due to the 1) lack of skills or training for police/law enforcement agencies/policy or lawmakers/courts or regulators; 2) inadequate information and communication technology (ICT) infrastructure; 3) inconsistent court rulings or court interpretation; and 4) difficulties dealing with cross border issues.

Aware of these realities, the ASEAN has further charted its course to enhance regional cooperation to address cybercrime through the ASEAN Declaration to Prevent and Combat Cybercrime. Through its Senior Officials Meeting on Transnational Crime (SOMTC), particularly the Working Group on Cybercrime, it has partnered with the Government of Japan through the Japan-ASEAN Integration Fund (JAIF) in advancing a shared cause. In 2016, the ASEAN Cyber Capacity Development Project was initiated to strengthen ASEAN Member States’ (AMSs) capacities to fight cybercrime, promote cooperation between Japan and ASEAN, and enhance regional and extra-regional cooperation in cybercrime matters. After two years of implementation, considered as Phase I of the initiative, the project contributed to strengthened capacities of AMSs to combat cybercrime and work together as a region, fostered regional strategic discussion, identified trends, and provided a foundation for improved information exchange. For more details of the Phase I’s specific outputs, see here.

What is the project aiming for?

Bringing in the gains from the Phase I, the initiative continues on to its Phase II. While continuing with the overall objectives, Phase II aims to fill in the gaps and address the findings as informed by Phase I. It aims to achieve the following:

  • A regionally applicable high-level development guide for beneficiary countries to draw from to be able to put in place strategy that will allow them to respond to cyber-related offences and threats more effectively, in consultation with relevant stakeholders;
  • Conduct of four (4) trainings and two (2) workshops to further enhance capacities of regional law enforcement officers to investigate cybercrime and participate in international investigations;
  • Development and promotion of an e-learning module for first responders on the handling and preservation of digital evidence; and
  • Conduct of two (2) tailored workshops on the role and utility of digital evidence and collaboration with national cybercrime.

We recognised the growing sophistication and transboundary nature of cyber threats and underlined the need to address cybersecurity challenges in a holistic manner to ensure an open, secure, stable, accessible and resilient cyberspace to support the digital economy. We emphasised the need to enhance regional cybersecurity cooperation through a feasible coordination mechanism on cybersecurity across the three ASEAN Community pillars, implementing practical confidence-building measures and adopting the ASEAN Leaders’ Statement on Cybersecurity Cooperation, including the Ministers’ guidance in developing an ASEAN Digital Masterplan 2025, as well as supporting the cybersecurity activities and training programmes…which will complement existing ASEAN efforts in cybersecurity capacity building.

The project fosters regional cooperation against cybercrime in Southeast Asia. It supports the Senior Officials Meeting on Transnational Crime Cybercrime Work Programme to implement the ASEAN Plan of Action in Combating Transnational Crime (2016-2025). The project will be implemented for a period of two years, from 2019 to 2021.

29 November 2019