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Josephine Teo and WP Chair Sylvia Lim clash over the label ‘crisis of confidence’ on public digital trust

During a motion debate on Wednesday, Minister for Communications and Information Josephine Teo voiced words of criticism over the label of “crisis of confidence” by Members of Parliament from Workers’ Party regarding the public growing loss of trust in the safety of digital space.

Ms Teo likened the Workers’ Party’s criticisms of online safety efforts to bystanders ‘pontificating’ while firefighters battle blazes. Ms Lim countered, laying out reasons to reflect that there is a serious issue with public confidence.



SINGAPORE:  Josephine Teo, The Minister for Communications and Information (MCI), in a recent parliamentary debate, voiced words of criticism over the label of “crisis of confidence” by Members of Parliament from Workers’ Party regarding the public growing loss of trust in the safety of digital space.

On 10 January, Workers’ Party Chairman Sylvia Lim, MP for Aljuned GRC, voiced her concerns about the crisis of public confidence over digital transactions in a motion debated in the Singapore Parliament.

She pointed out that even previously trusted savings avenues, like CPF funds and fixed deposits, are now vulnerable to scams and malware, contributing to this crisis of trust.

Although three banks have introduced “money lock” options to safeguard customer funds against cyber threats, Ms Lim noted that this move reflects an acknowledgement of the digital sphere’s inherent vulnerabilities.

“I would not like to exaggerate the situation, but I would say that we are moving towards a crisis of confidence in digital banking, without stronger intervention by government regulators.”

While acknowledging the importance of a ‘whole of nation’ approach to foster trust in the digital sphere by creating an inclusive and secure digital society, she emphasized the necessity for government and businesses to spearhead this initiative.

Ms Lim underscored the pressing need for robust measures to rebuild trust in the digital domain, specifically targeting the combat against evolving scams and the regulation of AI advancements.

Teo challenges ‘crisis of confidence’ label

Responding to comments by Ms Lim and her fellow MPs from the Workers’ Party, Ms Josephine Teo, Minister for Communication and Information, called on MPs not to spread labels on issues.

Stressing that fighting scams is “thankless work”, Ms Teo likened WP members to bystanders watching firefighters put out a fire, “pontificating” and telling the firefighters what they should do.

“then when they do manage to put out some fires with great effort, and getting ready to fight the next fire because they know it’s coming, then the very same bystanders say: ‘thank goodness I said that.'”

Addressing public concern, not creating panic: Ms Lim

Ms Lim swiftly addressed Ms Teo’s allegation, emphasising that her speech did not intend to politicize the issue or to create panic, but rather she intended to reflect what she saw as the current sentiment of significant sections of the public.

She further laid out reasons to reflect on the public sentiment on declining trust toward online space.

She cited the IMDA’s statistics showing that 99% of persons aged 60 and above are worried about becoming scam victims.

“99%,  that’s quite almost a hundred per cent of people in this age group are worried about becoming scam victims, ” she reminded.

She further highlighted other MPs also sharing that there are residents who ignore official communications because they can’t tell whether these are authentically from the government or it’s a scammed message.

Ms Lim also highlighted feedback from members of the public who expressed a desire to take their accounts offline, and the establishment of a Task Force on the resilience and security of Digital Infrastructure and services, in which she believed that its purpose was actually to oversee matters of public confidence.

“I would argue that there is a serious issue with public confidence, and I think it is borne out by these factors that I’ve mentioned, ” nevertheless, Ms Lim acknowledged the work done by the agencies is a big task and a 24/7 effort.

In response, Ms Teo did not address the point about the statistics that 99% of persons aged 60 and above are worried about becoming scam victims.

Instead, Ms Teo went on to say, ‘Whatever is posted on social media should benefit people who are not able to take part in this discussion. ”

“I hope that messages being put out by MPs don’t simply use very sensational or glaring headlines.’

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LHL lan jiao talk! Big words about saving reserves but what the losses ARE??

It is not how many fires you put down. It is why there are fires in the first place. PAP 1 million dollar minister has missed the elephant 🐘 in the room and taking on an ex- police officer and a lawyer MP in Sylvia Lim.

This PAP’s Administration NO BLAME CULTURE is the SEED of all troubles SG ENCOUNTER over the LAST FEW YEARS.

Refuse to admit.
Refuse to take blames.
Refuse to apologise.
Refuse to be TRANSPARENT.

And POOR SHEEPS are LEFT inside their SLAUGHTER HOUSE even without those 55 percent sheeps COMPLAINING.

What a JOKE.

We have NO CONFIDENCE on using IT for bank transfers and payments because the banks are acting with INDIFFERENCE!

If at all they respond, the answer is a STANDARD, we look into it………and the matter goes dead!

There is NO NEED to renew Jo Teo’s contract…….let her be the fire chief!

I am not siding any party here but from a professional angle, the one way to make online banking “safer” is to use your device, eg. HP or computer, only for the purpose of banking and nothing else. The reasons being vulnerabilities of device weakens with each added app or programs installed and strength of security is as strong as the weakest point or app in this situation.  However, I emphasise it is only “safer” as even if you use your device is used for nothing else but banking, there are still inherent vulnerabilities on device like operating system, device… Read more »

The PAP has always did this – surveys. Why don’t they then commission independent entities to survey Sheeps attitudes, grouses, or likeness of existing I T Digital offerings now and past 10 years.

Did they or NO BALLS. Well forgone – Millionaire Scumbag Politicians’ No Blame Culture has every of their mistakes BLANKETED.

While if NOT OBLITERATED – they pretend to be blind while they can see clearly, right.

are there any difference between cotton lovers and pineapple lovers ? both share one common point. being fooled over and over again.

remember to vote little space saxophone lady out. tsk tsk tsk

We at Jalan Besar have absolute confidence in Minister Josephine Teo. We trust her. In fact in the next GE, we will increase our trust in her from 65% to 70%. So you oppies can just fuck off from Singapore. Not happy, please go jump down from MBS to end that miserable life of yours in Singapore. Ha ha ha!

Let me give you some real statistics that show what is real public trusts. Sylvia Lim from Aljunied GRC scored 60% votes in the last GE while our minister Josephine Teo from Jalan Besar GRC scored 65%!

You tell me. Who has greater public trust? So Slyvia Lim should just shut the fuck up. People trust Josephine Teo more than the Lesbian Sylvia Lim!

Jalan Besar residents should do SG a big favor and kick out JT in the next elections. Period. After all, the Loong-era is apparently coming to a close soon, and the sooner we rid ourselves of his long-time PLP kakis, the better for SG.

Test Ballon term was an issue Now GST 9%.Bo pian.
Now Crisis of Confidence term.
Can Jo T, get the people in charge to do a better job. Or sack them.

the “digital” SimplyGo(fuck yourself) cards and app are also laggy shit. like never pay enough money for bandwidth. singapoor has regressed.

First, if the G does not recognise there is a “crisis of confidence” in public digital trust, it shows how ministers like JT are living in a parallel universe. It is obvious JT is the proverbial ostrich with its head in the sand. THERE IS A CRISIS IN CONFIDENCE IN THE PUBLIC DIGITAL TRUST! While at a DBS branch recently, I learned that fixed deposits in DBS are not safe because of the early online withdrawal option. (UOB fixed deposits can only be withdrawn either prematurely or upon maturity through personal visit at a branch – so, it is safe).… Read more »

Josephine Teo won’t see the “light” until she or someone close to her get’s scammed and have their bank account drained. Though no doubt if it happens, the bank involved will quietly and quickly compensate them in full.

From the view of Joe ‘small pace’ Teo:

Attack WP at all times.
Just dont answer any questions…
Just attack…

If you find it so difficult to answer questions from
our legal representative in Parliament, you can resign.
Go home… back into your kennel.

C’mon, … what about the label of most “kena scammed” nation on planet earth !!! And the label of most expensive “public housing” on planet earth !!! Along with the label of most insanely paid prime minister on planet earth !!! And not omitting the label of most outrageously paid electrical engineer on planet earth !!! The labels are endless, and in time, more will be added, given the nature of this regime, … and will this regime argue against each and every one of them in parliament, … even though they’re true and real !!! It’s all about the… Read more »

pap is missing the point once again as usual. It shows that they are living in their ivory tower and acting on pure stupidity.

Let’s remember what LKY had said about the standards of pap governance: “Everything must work! If it doesn’t work I want to know why. It’s easy to replace the one in charge.” I think it’s very clear to us all that based on LKY’s standards, jo teo must be replaced! Let’s vote jo teo out since we know the weak, people-pleasing-looney will never fire that lousy jo teo.

This is how pap treats our legitimately voted in members of Parliament, opposition members especially. Instead of listening empathetically to understand and solve problems, jo sex in a small place chose to attack our opposition mps and character assassinate them in public view. Is jo sex in a small place practicing the kind of destructive politics we enlightened voters loathe so vehemently? Let’s vote jo sex in a small place out. Enuf is enuf!

This I agree. Face to face service still the best. You get to know who service you. What service they provide, how they do it with grace and kindness compared to digital since authorities dun want to put in place a secure system, nor listen to feedback YET expect you to take responsibility when it is at their end.

People are aging and they still want to go online online (hokkien means ong lye ong lye) tsk tsk tsk

Sylvia LIM: Physical presence to the bank is the best. I fully agree. stop all those digital craps. What do you think? tsk tsk tsk

We all used to enjoy banking customer service. Where are they now? tsk tsk tsk

Many staff and counters will removed. Most of the services channeled to robot answering machines.???

Example Press 1 for Apple, press 2 for Pears, press 3 for …… Ooops line cut off !!!!

Using answering machines results in job cuttings…..not only that, they are filling in jobs so many
foreigners. tsk tsk tsk

Nothing is better to meet 1 to 1 with the customer service staff. What do you think?

Vote wisely. tsk tsk tsk