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Saturday, April 13, 2024

Cybersecurity advocate lauds former DICT undersecretary

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Former Party-list Rep. and cybersecurity advocate Francisco Ashley Acedillo commended lawyer and former undersecretary for policy and legal affairs of the Department of Information and Communications Technology Jose Vicente Salazar, “for serving as an effective bridge between the government and the private sector, especially in the present discussions on e-governance, cybersecurity and the implementing rules and regulations of the SIM Card Registration Act.”

Acedillo is also the chief of staff of the chairman of the powerful Senate Blue Ribbon Committee.

“It saddens me, though, to see him leave government service as we will lose a very capable, knowledgeable and honest public servant in Atty. Salazar. But family comes first, and I admire his decision in any case,” said Acedillo, referring to the lawyer’s irrevocable resignation from the DICT because of the health condition of his wife.

Acedillo, who heads the Philippine Institute of Cybersecurity Professionals Inc., said with the exit of Salazar from government, PICSPro “lost a valuable partner in our mission and advocacies for the country’s information and communications technology sector”.

“In his brief stint at the DICT, I saw his all-out commitment to the government’s ICT agenda, as well as his transparency and integrity—stellar qualities which could have served the Department in particular and the government in general – in good stead,” said Acedillo who, as a member of the 16th Congress, was one of the principal authors of Republic Act 10844 which created the DICT.

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“As soon as he assumed his position, I knew that Atty. Salazar would be an asset to the government as he had been in the past and to the DICT in particular,” Acedillo said. He cited Salazar’s ability to bring relevant stakeholders to the table, help them arrive at a consensus and work collaboratively.

“I have long admired his stint in public service, going back to when he was an Undersecretary of the DOJ, sitting as the designated representative of the Justice Department in the Board of the Civil Aviation Authority of the Philippines, which I served as both a consultant and as deputy chief of staff in 2008-2009.  Atty. Salazar was both a steadying presence and a staunch supporter ready to assist the CAAP in its infancy,” he said.

“His sharp legal mind combined with his engineering background made him a real asset in the government and the private sector’s joint initiative to carve out policies that will help the public develop faith in the security of online transactions.  This is crucial in our bid to achieve financial inclusion,” Acedillo said.

Acedillo expressed hope that Salazar “would continue to be available to our organization  and to the larger ICT and cybersecurity community to lend us the value of his experience, expertise and insights in relation to our advocacies and mission for the sector and for our country”.

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