Singapore Wants You To Design Its Next Government Website

The Singapore Government has launched a competition to encourage citizens to help redesign its central government portal for information and services, A prize of $1,500 will be awarded to the nomination that best redesigns the homepage, topic page and directory of the website. The design brief states that it should be “warm, friendly yet credible”, “resonate with Singaporeans”, use dark colours and resize to fit any device.

Hong Kong And Singapore Agree To Automated Immigration Swap

Citizens of Hong Kong and Singapore will be able to use automated immigration clearance services when visiting each others’ cities. Starting on Monday, all passport holders older than 11 with no adverse record can enrol. The move will “provide greater convenience for holders of the Singapore passport and HKSAR passport. It will also enhance trade, business and tourism links,” an official statement said.

Singapore’s Economic Planning Agency Looks To Smart Energy Solutions

Singapore’s Economic Development Board (EDB) has announced plans to develop smart solutions for energy management and control, smart grids, energy storage and integration of renewable energies. The project will include research initiatives to integrate multiple renewable energy sources such as wind and solar energy with existing capabilities. It will also look at how Singapore can reduce energy loss from utilities companies and enhance their capacity.

Why The Japanese Government Is Buying Satellite Images To Track Farmland

The Japanese government is now turning to satellite images to better track its agricultural lands, on top of the maps it has been maintaining over the years. Acquiring satellite imagery is a fast and efficient solution for the Ministry of Agriculture, Makoto Higashi, CEO & President, Japan Spaceimaging Corporation, a partner of GIS provider Esri, told FutureGov. The alternative of taking aerial photography is not only slow, but requires tedious coordination and cooperation from local authorities.

The Philippines Integrates Open Data With Freedom Of Information Bill

The Philippines is integrating open data provisions into the draft Freedom of Information (FOI) bill, the Open Data Philippines team has announced, to bridge gaps in demand and supply of information. The team was tasked with coming up with a plan to integrate its open data activities and the bill. “This collaboration has now borne fruit, with the proposed bill containing some provisions recommended by the [Open Data] Task Force,” the team wrote in a blog post this week.

Acer becomes candidate supplier for China procurement orders

The Central Government Procurement Center established by the China government through cooperation with China-based e-commerce operators Tmall and Suning, has set up the Central Government Procurement Online Store to host government procurement open-bids, and Acer has been selected as a candidate supplier for desktops, notebooks, AIO (all-in-one) PCs and cloud computing servers. Other Taiwan-based candidate suppliers are Asustek Computer and Advantech for cloud computing servers and Arora for printers, according to industry sources.

Defence eHealth project blows out by $77 million

The cost of rolling out electronic health records across the Australian Defence Force has blown out by $77 million, more than doubling the original budget for the eHealth scheme. Launching the new capability on Friday, Assistant Defence Minister Stuart Robert confirmed that the budget for the project, initially forecast at $55.7 million in February 2011, had now been revised up to $133 million, representing an 138 percent increase.,defence-ehealth-project-blows-out-by-77-million.aspx

Hong Kong Mobile App Opens Government Map Data To Public

The Hong Kong government has pulled together 120 types of data from various government departments into a single digital map that the public can access on their mobile devices. Residents and visitors can now search for information on local landmarks, streets, and public facilities including public toilets, post officers, libraries, car parks and government offices. Users can view their current location on the map and find facilities and buildings within 1 kilometre of where they are.

India’s biometric ID project is back on track

The new Indian government has indicated strong support for a controversial project to require residents to have biometric IDs in order to collect government benefits, setting a target of 1 billion enrollments by 2015. The status of the project was in doubt when a new federal government was voted in last May, as the winning Bharatiya Janata Party had said during the election campaign that it would review the program. The new target signals the new government’s backing of the Unique Identification Authority of India (UIDAI), which was largely seen as a project of the previous government led by the Congress party.

PDPC to investigate M1 ‘security loophole’

The Personal Data Protection Commission is in touch with M1 regarding an alleged security breach by a customer, wanting to flag a “loophole”, even though M1 says it has resolved the issue and put safeguards in place. SINGAPORE: The Personal Data Protection Commission (PDPC) is investigating a “security loophole” that caused M1 to temporarily suspend pre-orders for Apple’s iPhone 6 smartphones on Monday (Sep 15).

Wikileaks: Singapore firm with government ties bought cyber snooping software

On September 15, Wikileaks released copies of invoices and support tickets from Germany-based software company FinFisher. This revealed the names of most of their clients, and how much they’ve paid for their technology. If you’re wondering why they deserve this, you should know that this particular firm deals in weaponized surveillance malware that reportedly includes the following:

Australia Picks Commercial Partner For Its Open Source Website Plan

The Australian Government has signed a deal with Acquia to deliver an open source content management system, govCMS, for its websites, John Sheridan, Government CTO has announced. GovCMS will use open source software Drupal and will be hosted on a public cloud, which will be provided by Acquia. Drupal was selected after the team assessed 18 other CMS systems. Acquia will also partner with local businesses so that govCMS can provide end-to-end services from website design and development to support and management.

Singapore Launches Regional Disaster Centre To Coordinate Multinational Military Efforts

The Singapore government has announced plans to host a regional centre to coordinate large-scale humanitarian assistance and disaster relief efforts. The centre seeks to support military efforts in disaster-stricken countries by providing more timely information and coordinating efforts with other militaries, said Chan Chun Sing, Second Minister for Defence. This will help them make more informed decisions on how best to deploy their resources.

Adelaide City, Australia To Build Internet Of Things Innovation Hub

Adelaide City is developing an innovation space to enable entrepreneurs to develop and test new ways for everyday devices to communicate via the internet. The Internet of Things Innovation Hub will focus on trialling and then installing new services to improve transport, healthcare, education, utilities and energy sectors. Adelaide will be the first Australian city to set up such a hub.

Snowden accuses NZ PM of lying about mass surveillance

[Updated] Whistleblower Edward Snowden has accused New Zealand’s Prime Minister John Key of lying to the electorate about the existence of mass surveillance of citizens by the country’s main spy agency. Snowden today revealed in The Intercept that he “routinely came cross the communications of New Zealanders” while working with the US National Security Agency’s once secret XKEYSCORE mass surveillance tool, which it shares with the NZ Government Communications Security Bureau (GCSB). The NZ Government is actively concealing the full extent of internal surveillance, he claimed.,snowden-accuses-nz-pm-of-lying-about-mass-surveillance.aspx

Indian Marriage Registrations Going Online

The Dehli government’s revenue department plans to launch an online system for citizens to register their marriages. The portal is currently being trialled and, within a year, more services will be added, according to local news media reports. District offices will also have kiosks to allow those without the internet to register. The plan is for digital certificates to be provided in the long-term. There are also plans for birth and death certificates, as well as citizenship and residency forms.

Rs 800-crore centre to help people check malware in computers

NEW DELHI: Amid growing use of IT, the government today said it will step up cyber security measures under Digital India programme starting with a Rs 800 crore centre that will help people check and clean their computer system from viruses and other malwares. “We are going to make national cyber coordination centre at an estimated cost of Rs 800 crore. For this we are carrying out inter-ministerial consultation… It will have capability to tell you that your computer system is infected and will clean that infection as well,” Telecom and IT Minister Ravi Shankar Prasad said in a conference on 100-days performance of his ministry.

Australia Plans New Framework To Better Government Performance Reporting

The Australian government has proposed a new performance reporting framework to use better quality data to support government resource allocations. The framework introduces two new types of performance information – corporate plans and annual performance statements – “to improve the standard of planning and reporting for Commonwealth entities, especially regarding the delivery of public services and programmes”, the Department of Finance has said in its proposal – Enhanced Commonwealth Performance Framework – published this week.

Singapore Launches Online National Child Care Registration System

Singapore parents can now search online and register for suitable child care centres for their children using a new centralised system. The Early Childhood Development Agency developed the Registration Management System to improve information sharing among parents and child care operators in the country. The online system, also available in a mobile-friendly version, lets parents search for child care centres by multiple fields, including location, age of the child, and programme type (eg. infant care, child care, or student care.)

Agriculture Department To Process All Import Documentation Online

Australian Department of Agriculture’s new online system for lodging imported cargo documentation launched yesterday, aiming to save commercial importers and customs brokers time and money. More than 31 million sea and air containers were imported into Australia last year, requiring around a million separate lodgements of documentation. “The documents are emailed, faxed or lodged in person at a front counter, adding time and expense to the process,” explained Raelene Vivian, First Assistant Secretary Compliance Division, Department of Agriculture.