The Consumers’ Association of Penang (CAP) is distressed by the recent news that a group of hackers have hacked into the systems of both government and private hospitals and stolen the personal health data of tens of thousands of individuals - data which is then sold to pharmaceutical companies through information selling syndicates.
The implications of this cyber theft is terrifying because our government and various agencies are trying to get everything (banking transactions, filling forms, making complaints, etc.) to go “online”, as part of our green initiative; however, there is a high chance we don’t really have the security to back this move – as made obvious by this incident. As it is, a news report has stated that 10,000 cyber crime cases are reported each year with an approximation of money loss equalling more than RM2.7 million; and the crimes largely involve online scams and hacking of computer servers.
CAP President showing statistics of accidents during festive season.
We are at the threshold of another balik kampung frenzy to get home at all costs. For many families it will be a period of great rejoicing during the coming Hari Raya. However, joy and happiness can suddenly change to extreme sorrow and agony for those who lose their loved ones in road crashes which spares nobody. Although Ops Selamat 9 will be in full swing, how much can we expect from the operation?
From what we see, the operations have largely failed because year after year, the carnage from road crashes continues unabated.
Such shock and disappointment we feel that another building under construction has had one of its floors collapse. Just like the incident in Alor Gajah 2 months ago, the temporary structure holding up the floors (that had not yet set) was not strong enough. It was reported that weak recycled items were used as the temporary structure. Why did the contractor decide this was the best way to go?
CAP is utterly shocked and disgusted by the news of people being ruthlessly gunned down, now being more frequent. As such CAP is demanding the government to set up a Royal Commission of Inquiry (RCI) to inquire into and recommend measures to curb firearm incidents in the country.
It appeared that the number of shooting cases had also escalated in recent months and some of the prominent cases were:
· On 15 June, a businessman was shot dead in his car just after the Sungai Rasau toll plaza, Shah Alam.
· On 21 June, a PKR politician Bill Kayong was shot in the neck as he stopped his pick-up truck at the traffic light junction in Lutong, north of Miri city.
· On 6 July, a female real estate agent was shot dead and her daughter injured in a shooting incident at Taman OUG, Kuala Lumpur.
· On 13 July, a man high on drugs allegedly shot his mother, brother, his two-year-old nephew and his mother's boyfriend with a 9mm semi-automatic pistol in Batu Maung, Penang.
Motorcyclists are the most vulnerable road users owing to the instability of the vehicle as well as the little or no protection afforded during an accident. This coupled with the attitude of motorcyclists and lax enforcement has created a national disaster on our roads. Neither the authorities nor the people are sensitive or serious about the situation. Deaths on the roads become mere statistics to them.
Each year on an average there are about 465,000 road accidents resulting in nearly 7,000 deaths. Sixty percent or 4,200 of the deaths are contributed by motorcyclists and 40% of that are motorcyclists in the age group of 16 to 25 years.