Cyber Attacks Far More Dangerous Says Sibal
Balance Between Individual Privacy and Security Concerns Needed

The Union Minister of Communications and Information Technology, Shri Kapil Sibal has said that adequate balance needs to be maintained between needs of ‘privacy of individual’ and ‘genuine security concerns of state’ while dealing with challenges of cyber security. Delivering keynote address in the opening session of the Summit on Information and Network Security for Emerging Markets on September 20, 2011 at Helsinki, he cautioned that the cyber attacks come not only from individuals but also from rival corporate houses and rouge states. Shri Sibal reminded that single malicious malware can bring to halt not only big nuclear plants but also vital activities of financial institutions, which are globally interconnected. The Minister said that IT network expansion and linked developments have given rise to over dependency on network platform, which itself is coming under attacks of different nature which are far more dangerous than even terrorist attacks. This is posing different set of challenges in terms of information security.

Talking of the remarkable growth in telecom services in India, Shri Sibal added that mobile connections in India has grown from 3 million in 2000 to 870 million in 2011. India is laying National Optical Fibre connecting 2.5 lakh Gram Panchayats in next three years and implementing NeGP(National e-Governance Plan) to empower citizens. This phenomenal growth of the network and people’s dependency on network platform make the security issues of foremost concern to India. Shri Sibal mentioned that India needs technologies for testing labs for network security.

In this context, Shri Sibal appealed to the global community to collaborate and evolve global protocols in security of information and network. In this direction, ITU’s Global Security Agenda as well as Budapest Convention are major international initiatives taken by global community. Shri Sibal assured that India stands committed to contribute and cooperate with international community on this issue.

Global community needs to go beyond above steps and take more concrete steps, given the nature of seriousness of the issue. Individual companies also need to be far more open while sharing their designs/architecture with government agencies, who themselves need to address genuine security concerns of developing nations.

Shri Kapil Sibal also underlined the challenges before ‘Emerging Markets’ which are far more complex as these economies strive to provide basic amenities to their citizens, despite server handicaps in physical infrastructure. He added that these developing economies need to ‘leapfrog’ by absorbing new technologies like data networks in their zeal to deliver services to citizens without waiting for physical infrastructure to come up to desired levels.

Shri Sibal also had a bilateral meeting with Ms Krista Kiuru, Minister of Housing and Communications of Finland. Shri Sibal extended invitation international companies to invest in manufacturing in India as it will not only help in creating more employment for vast young population but also give cost advantage to investing companies. He also stressed on need for bilateral cooperation in field of information and network security.

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