Tuesday, June 7, 2011

Cyber Security Policy Of India

Cyber Security is an issue that tries to protect and preserve the Information Technology Infrastructure (ITI) of a Nation. Since Cyberspace is boundary less it is possible to attack the ITI of any Nation from any place.

We are still dealing with the Cyber Security issues in India. Although India has formulated the Cyber Security Strategy but it is more on the side of prescribed guidelines alone. The practical and actual implementation of the same is still missing.

Policies and Strategies issues are best implemented practically and effectively if they are made part of the National Policies. Till now we have not formulated a National Cyber Security Policy of India that is implantable at National level.

The Cyber Security Policy of India must cover areas like Cyber Laws, Cyber Crimes, Transnational Technological Crimes, Cyber Attacks, Cyber Warfare, Cyber Terrorism, Cyber Espionage, Human Rights Protection in Cyberspace, Critical Infrastructure Protection Plan, Critical ICT Infrastructure Protection, Crisis Management Plan, etc.

Till now there is no National Cyber Security Policy of India that covers these issues and is implementing the same. Our websites are frequently defaced, strategic computers are often compromised, sensitive defence documents are occasionally stolen and cyber espionage against India is frequently committed.

I also understand that it is not possible to have an absolute Cyber Security. The notion of having an absolute Cyber Security is a “Myth” as we cannot ensure absolute Cyber security anywhere. There are exploits and vulnerabilities, both hardware and software based, that cannot be anticipated and tackled in advance. In fact, “Zero Days Exploits” are the most difficult one to anticipate and handle. In these types of exploits all Cyber Security Measures proves ineffective and futile.

Further, human beings are usually the weakest link in the Cyber Security infrastructure and Social Engineering is the easiest way to break into a Computer System. Besides being easy, Social Engineering can be incredibly cheap. Social Engineering is the hardest form of attack to defend against because an individual or organisation cannot protect itself with hardware or software alone.

Both Government Departments and Private Companies must have good employee’s awareness activities and information dealing policies in place and the employees must strictly follow these policies. The employees must be willing to ask relevant questions while dealing with a request to provide sensitive information.

Indian Government must also focus upon Techno Legal Cyber Security Skill Development for its employees and departments. Suitable Techno Legal Cyber Security Courses must be made available to Government departments and employees. All these issues must be made part of the Cyber Security Policy of India that should be formulated and implemented as soon as possible.

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