Cybersecurity incidents stood at around 50,000 in 2016, which has skyrocketed to over 3 lakh in the first ten months of the current year.
While Narendra Modi’s flagship scheme of ‘Digital India’ is catching pace, the country’s digital space is also being attacked at a much higher rate in recent years. Cybersecurity incidents including phishing, network scanning and probing, viruses and website hacking, stood at around 50,000 in 2016, which has skyrocketed to over 3 lakh in the first ten months of the current year. “In tune with the dynamic nature of Information Technology and emerging cyber threats, continuous efforts are required to be made by owners to protect networks by way of hardening and deploying appropriate security controls,” Sanjay Dhotre, MoS, Ministry of Electronics and Information Technology, said in a reply to a question in Lok Sabha.
The cyber crimes have shot up despite the government’s efforts to keep the digital space flawless by issuing guidelines for Chief Information Security Officers. Along with the government, the Indian Computer Emergency Response Team (CERT-In) also issues alerts and advisories regarding the latest cyber threats, vulnerabilities, and countermeasures to protect computers and networks on a regular basis.
However, the cybercrimes are driven by much more than just IT flaws. “More than IT weaknesses, fraud incidents in the digital space mostly happen due to human weaknesses such as lack of awareness and sharing data on the wrong platform. Another reason is the negligence of small companies to procure a concrete firewall,” Mukul Shrivastava – Partner, Forensic & Integrity Services, EY, told Financial Express Online.
He added that big companies with deep pockets have the appetite to install high-end firewalls but smaller companies, especially in Tier-2 cities neglect such threat and fall prey to it. Talking about the related policies, Mukul Shrivastava said that the policies and regulations are rigid but timely monitoring, execution and regular up-gradation is the key.
However, to prevent such crimes and to speed up investigation, the Ministry of Home Affairs has taken steps to spread awareness about cybercrimes issue through alerts and advisories and has also launched an online national cybercrime reporting portal to enable complainants to report complaints pertaining to all types of cybercrimes with special focus on cyber crimes against women and children.