Cyber threats to rise in India, will affect rising digital economy: Report


As India moves to a digital economy, cyber attacks are also increasing with rise in numbers of such incidents occurring in financial sector and banking systems in the last five years, a recent joint study by Assocham PwC said.

“Cyberattacks can deliver economic blows, derail India from its projected growth trajectory and worsen relations with our neighbours, unleashing a state of anarchy,” the report said.

India’s growth is opening up gaps, which can be exploited by the cyber attacks, added the report.

In the past few months, various cases of data breach have been reported, which raises a serious question on data safety.

Recently, Reliance Jio users’ data had been leaked by a website called magicapk.com. The site threw up data such as first and last name, e-mail id, mobile number, date of SIM card activation and which circle it was activated from.

Currently, India digital economy is $270 billion, will touch $1 trillion by 2023. India is third worst affected among 100 countries. According to another report, almost 74% of the organizations in India have not done a risk assessment including cyber security. India is one of the most infected countries in the world. We also have a very high rate of prevalence of piracy.

Despite that, there has been minimum effort in this regard by the government.

India’s budgetary allocation towards cyber security was about Rs 42.2 crore in 2012-13, up 19% from Rs 35.45 crore in 2010-11 whereas US spend $658 million through department of homeland security and $93 million through US-CERT in 2013, according to the joint study brought out by Assocham and PwC.

At present people online have no control over their data, and in the absence of a privacy law in India.

As of now, the Indian IT act majorly specifies penalty to companies for failing to protect information, equipment, devices, computer, computer resource, communication device and information stored therein from unauthorized access, use, disclosure, disruption, modification or destruction. However, it does not specify any uniform data security guideline or policy.

This is high time that government should increase focus on critical infrastructure, collaborative effort from business organisations, training people even at primary level and creation of indigenous tools for building secure and cyber-resilient environment in the country.


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