Govt to Strengthen Cy­ber Se­cu­rity as Dig­i­tal Trans­ac­tions Go Up

Coun­try’s apex cy­berspace in­tel­li­gence agency to be­come func­tional in June

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In wake of the un­prece­dented rise in the dig­i­tal trans­ac­tions in the coun­try, the gov­ern­ment is fast track­ing its ef­forts to build a ro­bust cy­ber se­cu­rity ecosys­tem. The coun­try’s apex cy­berspace in­tel­li­gence agency, the Na­tional Cy­ber­se­cu­rity Co­or­di­na­tion Cen­tre (NCCC), will be­come func­tional in June this year while sec­tor-spe­cific com­puter emer­gency re­sponse teams (CERT) for in­dus­tries such as power, com­mu­ni­ca­tions etc, will also be cre­ated, Ravi Shankar Prasad, Union min­is­ter for elec­tron­ics and IT said on Tues­day.

Prasad was speak­ing at the launch of the Bot­net Clean­ing and Mal­ware Anal­y­sis Cen­tre called the Cy­ber Swach­hta Ken­dra, which will help in­di­vid­u­als and or­gan­i­sa­tions in anal­y­sis of mal­ware and bot­nets that af­fect net­works and sys­tems. Prasad said that In­dia is on the path of be­com­ing a one tril­lion-dol­lar dig­i­tal econ­omy over the com­ing years and will need to have strong cy­ber­se­cu­rity to fa­cil­i­tate it.

Prasad also said that while the min­istry has al­ready launched a di­vi­sion for dig­i­tal pay­ments un­der CERT and a fi­nan­cial CERT is also be­ing set up, states will also be en­cour­aged to set up their own CERTs. Among other mea­sures an­nounced were 10 more Stan­dard­i­s­a­tion Test­ing and Qual­ity Cer­ti­fi­ca­tion (STQC) fa­cil­i­ties to be set up and the test­ing fee for any startup that comes up with a dig­i­tal tech­nol­ogy in the area of cy­ber se­cu­rity to be re­duced by 50%.

Prasad also said that des­ig­nated foren­sic labs will be em­pow­ered to work as the cer­ti­fied author­ity to es­tab­lish cy­ber crime.

“In­dia to­day joined the dis­tin­guished club of coun­tries that have mal­ware-clea- ning sys­tems for the use of its ci­ti­zens. As of now, we have13 banks and in­ter­net ser­vice providers us­ing this fa­cil­ity. With the ex­pand­ing dig­i­tal foot­print in the coun­try, I see a surge in star­tups in the area of cy­ber se­cu­rity by the end of the year,” Prasad said.

As of now 58 in­ter­net ser­vice providers and 13 banks have come on board to use this sys­tem. “The pro­ject has bud­get out­lay of .₹ 90 crore spread over pe­riod of 5 years,” CERT-In Direc­tor Gen­eral San­jay Bahl said. “This cen­tre will work in co­or­di­na­tion with the in­ter­net ser­vice providers (ISPs) and In­dus­try. This Ken­dra will also en­hance aware­ness among ci­ti­zens re­gard­ing bot­net and mal­ware in­fec­tion along with mea­sures to be taken to se­cure their de­vices,” Prasad added.

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