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Singapore minister responds to German military call leak, says secure lines not expected ‘as a rule’

These protocols can include the use of encryption hardware or software, commercial secured lines or those provided by the embassy. He said the Ministry of Defence and Singapore Armed Forces officials also adopt such practices when attending meetings abroad.

“Even if a host country is to offer such means [of secured communications], it is questionable whether foreign participants are comfortable using it,” Heng added.


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One of the officials on the call was reportedly a general who stayed at a Singapore hotel during the biennial Singapore Airshow. Using the wireless internet service provided by the hotel, he had dialled into an online call on a web-conferencing platform that was suspected to be compromised.

Referring to the incident, Yio Chu Kang Single Member Constituency Member of Parliament Yip Hon Weng asked if Singapore’s reputation at hosting military events might be affected, and also sought to find out what measures are in place to safeguard Singapore’s telecommunications infrastructure during events with high-level foreign dignitaries.

Clarifying that his response will not refer to any specific incident, Heng said participants in international events and conferences, including those attended by military personnel and government leaders and officials, do not expect the host country to provide secured means of communications, as these are typically arranged by the participants on their end.

For the defence ministry and armed forces “we take a proactive approach to cybersecurity when we are involved in high signature events inclusive of those involving high-level foreign dignitaries, and we work closely with event organisers who remain accountable for the