PETALING JAYA: It would not be an understatement to say that businesses all over the world were brought to its knees from the loss of operations after being forced to close under a variety of lockdown measures. In Malaysia though, things have slowly started to pick back up under the “new normal”, but in this new environment, getting back to “business as usual” has taken on a different meaning.
Companies need to resume their activities amid standard operating procedures (SOP), social distancing, and differences in the way people interact. As a result, businesses are looking into new ways to continue business as usual.
When it comes to important procedural matters such as obtaining company-related documentation, in the past, company secretaries would have to had to request for the relevant documents at the Company Commission of Malaysia’s (SSM) office.
However, this is where Raffcomm Group and its lineup of services come in. The group provides contactless online retrieval of documents, which are essential for daily routine activities such as banking applications, grant applications, and even the recently announced Prihatin and Penjana govenrment aid applications.
Raffcomm’s group CEO and managing director Arief Adly Md Afendi shared more about the company and the safe, fast, and efficient solutions it offers.
Q: Could you tell us about the Raffcomm Group and its history?
A: Since its inception in 1999, Raffcomm Technologies has evolved from an IT services company that provides digital strategies for products and services to more advanced and new technologies like identity services. It is redefining the way the IT industry serves the business. Raffcomm Group, as an identity services company, focuses on securely giving assurance to relying parties on legalized digital identity of business identities and citizens, which may include government agencies and private sectors.
Besides the SSM e-info platform that has been running since 2006, Raffcomm Group has two trust business licenses, namely the e-money issuing license by Bank Negara Malaysia (BNM) since 2013 and the certification authority license by Malaysian Communications and Multimedia Commission (MCMC) since 2018.
Q: What is Raffcomm Group's offering?
A: We offer #StayHome services both with legally binding digital signature technology solutions under MCMC Regulated Environment & SSM e-info business verification services. One of them is the legally binding digital signing cloud solution. Our cloud-based digital signing solution handles all aspects of the digital signing process, from authenticating the user's legal identity to embedding the approval and tamper-evident seal on the final document. Users can invoke their signatures on mobile apps (IOS & Android) and web application. If the validity of the digitally signed documents were challenged in the future, the audit trail generated by our digital signing solution could serve as relevant proof to demonstrate the link between the identity of a signatory and a signature.
This is a service that we have provided as a licensed certification authority (CA) for SSM e-info documents. It is a transformational offering that enables users to get digitally signed SSM documents, for example, the company and business information, which are their profiles, certificates, scanned form images, and many more, on top of saving them from the hassle to get it over-the-counter at SSM.
The availability of digital CTC services is vital for ministries, government agencies like Inland Revenue Board (LHDN), Immigration, Road Transport Department Malaysia (JPJ), municipal councils, and other financial institutions and licensing bodies to conduct validations and approvals. Also, it allows the public to obtain certified documents for submissions and applications digitally without having to visit SSM counters. This is indeed an easier, faster, and reliable way to retrieve SSM documents during these times and beyond. Another service is the legally binding customer onboarding service with e-KYC (Know Your Customer) for business entities and individuals.
Q: How could Raffcomm Group's offering assist SMEs in recovering from the MCO Lockdown?
A: Since the lockdown, the world has seen the value of online transactions. To recover from the cost of not being able to sell products and services during the lockdown, SMEs, as well as big corporations, need to firm up their business processes to not only generate revenue faster but to cover losses twice as quickly. Our digital signature services can help businesses reduce costs and have legally binding digital transactions that can protect them, their customers, and the relying parties. These products ease business efforts to continue their regular operations. They are critical for many SMEs, financial institutions, legal firms as well as the authorities to conduct their business or carry out due diligence.
The main difference between digital signatures and other newly famous technologies such as distributed ledger technology (DLT), smart contracts, and biometric is that the technical security of digital signature which is digital certificate-based electronic signature is globally considered to be more secure and confer more evidential weight in court because of its legal effect.
Q: What are the challenges Malaysian SMEs are facing, and how can the Raffcomm Group solutions help?
A: The modern-day dilemma of physically meeting face-to-face to complete certain transactions such as the opening of an account, signing documents or contracts, and the risks of repudiation of digital transactions such that some stakeholders may not be protected in Malaysia's laws and regulations. From a legal perspective, digital certificates issued by a licensed CA has value in Malaysia's digital economy, as mentioned in Article 64 and 65 of the Digital Signature Act 1997, that a digitally signed message is deemed to be a written document and deemed to be an original document.
With our E-KYC solution, we ask both our clients and their customers to stay home while they let us verify the identity of your customer and carry out checks on their financial records or due diligence. Therefore, it is no longer necessary for the individual to go to the physical branch to sign agreements, approve payments, request, or perform any other daily business processes.
Q: How can you assure services provided by Raffcomm Group can protect users from cybersecurity threats?
A: Due to the nature of the business, cybersecurity is of the utmost importance for us; in order to safeguard the data in our systems and the interest of our stakeholders, we are continuously improving our infrastructures and internal cybersecurity resources as well as working with cutting-edge partners to ensure the overall resilience of the platforms and services.
For example, we use our CA services to support the group with public key infrastructure (PKI) technology. Features of PKI includes authentication which validates the identity of machines and individuals, digital signing encryption and last but not least, non-repudiation that ensures communications, data exchanges, and transactions are legally valid and irrevocable.
So, the technology certifies a particular cryptographic key belongs to a specific user or device, thus enabling digital certificates for encryption & digital signing, where one or more trusted parties could digitally sign documents. In other words, these cryptographic keys are the identity proof for users in our platforms.
We are also highly regulated by BNM for our e-money issuing licence which has a set of compliance requirements that involve yearly audits. These measures help us to fulfil the requirements of confidentiality, identity authentication, non-repudiation, and integrity of information. Besides strong policy and risk management methodology, our CA differentiation is also regulated by the MCMC, and it also goes through a stringent yearly audit process by MCMC and Webtrust Canada.