india prime minister narendra modi ravi shankar prasad it minister

Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi with Ravi Shankar Prasad, Indian minister of IT. Pic: AP

India: Cybersecurity becomes more of a priority after ‘legion’ attacks

CYBERSECURITY efforts are being stepped up by the Indian government following a series of attacks by the cybercrime gang calling itself ‘legion’.

The group has hacked Twitter accounts of prominent Indians and this week claimed the banking system is vulnerable and that it would carry out a massive dump of government emails.

In response, the government has said the computer emergency response team (CERT-In) will be boosted with the addition of ethical hackers and has been ordered to audit the National Payments Corporation of India (NPCI), according to Business Standard.

SEE ALSO: Cybersecurity in Asia: Is the region equipped to deal with cyber attacks?

The IT ministry has approved plans to create 26 new posts in CERT-In and set up regional CERTs in five states and also plans to review the Information Technology Act to strengthen the ability to tackle cybercrime.

“The Act came into being in 2000. It has, by and large, served us well. Now, as we move towards a digital economy, we are reviewing if there is a need to relook at its architecture, to make it more deterrent for cyber criminals,” IT minister Ravi Shankar Prasad said on Tuesday.

The news comes as a new report from IT industry body Nasscom and the Data Security Council of India says that India’s cyber-security product and services industry could be worth US$35bn by 2025, employing about a million people.

The report highlights 16 initiatives that need to be pursued for this to become a reality, according to The Economic Times, including strengthening of policy and regulations, developing skills, enhancing innovation and funding start-ups.

The report came on the same day that IBM inaugurated a state-of-the-art Security Command Center in Bangalore designed to provide 24/7 security for Indian enterprises while ensuring their data resides within the country.