Digitally, India is growing at a tremendous speed. Easier accessibility and faster supportability have made it highly acceptable in every sector. The government is also promoting and encouraging more digital transactions in order to bring more transparency. This makes the country more vulnerable to cyber threats.
According to a tech review firm Comparitech, India is among the least cyber-secure nations in the world. The country ranked 15th in the least cyber-secure countries across the globe. This puts India far below the average.
The score in the ranking was based on seven criteria: percentage of mobiles infected with malware, share of computers infected with malware, number of financial malware attacks, percentage of telnet attacks—the technique used by cybercriminals to get people to download a variety of malware types—percentage of attacks by crypto-miners, the best-prepared countries for cyber attacks and the countries with the most up-to-date legislation.
Over the last year, the country has seen a series of cybercrimes. For example, in July 2018, an ATM fraud hit the city of Kolkata where about 76 victims lost about 20 lakh rupees in 5 days. A month after that, two criminals from Navi Mumbai were accused of transferring money from bank accounts after stealing SIM card information. Even the world’s biggest biometric ID programme, Aadhar suffered from several cyber attacks and breaches.
India ranks fourth out of the top 10 most targeted countries by cyber attackers. Cybersecurity defenders are facing a lot of threats from cybercriminals. Because of the crowded space, and less number of professionals, cybersecurity is moving at a slower pace than required.
Recognising the importance of cyber-security, the Ministry of Electronics and Information Technology (MEITY), is now mandating all other ministries to earmark 10 per cent of their IT budgets for security spending. The government wants to beef up its IT infrastructure in the wake of recent security attacks such as Wannacry, Ransomware, and so on. The Ministry also plans to set up ten more Standardization Testing and Quality Certification (STQC) labs that provide quality assurance services in IT and electronics.
India is moving slowly, but surely towards cyber safety. Participation of India Inc. by encouraging more skill development through CSR initiatives in cyber training can fasten the process.