According to a new U.N. survey, Singapore has a near-perfect approach to cybersecurity, unlike many other wealthy countries that have substantial defense issues.
Wealth generates cybercrime, but it does not automatically generate cybersecurity, so governments need to make sure they are prepared, the survey by the U.N. International Telecommunication Union (ITU) said.
"There is still an evident gap between countries in terms of awareness, understanding, knowledge and finally capacity to deploy the proper strategies, capabilities, and programmes," the survey said.
The United States came second in the ITU's Global Cybersecurity Index, but many of the other top-rated countries are small or emerging economies.
Other countries ranked by the United Nations in the top 10 highest level of cybersecurity are Malaysia, Oman, Estonia, Mauritius, Australia, Georgia, France and Canada. Russia is ranked 11th, India at 25th, Germany at 26th, and China at 34th place.
The ranking is based on the legal, technical and organizational institutions of the countries, their educational and research capabilities, and their cooperation in information-sharing networks.
"Cybersecurity is an ecosystem where laws, organizations, skills, cooperation and technical implementation need to be in harmony to be most effective," the survey said.
"The degree of interconnectivity of networks implies that anything and everything can be exposed, and everything from national critical infrastructure to our basic human rights can be compromised."
According to the survey, the first crucial step is the adoption of a national cybersecurity strategy, but 50% of countries do not yet have one.
Among the countries that have better cybersecurity than their level of economic development, North Korea ranked 57th, however, which is ranked three spots ahead of much-richer Spain.
The smallest but wealthy countries also scored bad results - Andorra, Liechtenstein, Monaco and San Marino, while the Vatican's cybersecurity was ranked 186th out of 195 countries surveyed.
The worst is the security of Equatorial Guinea, which scored zero during the survey.