Wednesday, August 4, 2010

Preventive And Offensive Cyberspace Capabilities Of India

India is in the process of establishing cyber war capabilities. This is a good step in the right direction as of late India has been under constant attack through cyberspace.

However, as usual India has taken almost five years to implement the suggestions of Praveen Dalal in this regard. He had suggested use of preventive and offensive defence for cyberspace violations and provided the exclusive techno legal framework for India more than five years ago.

According to Praveen Dalal, Managing Partner of Perry4Law and CEO of the cyber security research, training and educational institution of India (CSRTCI), India has been very slow in adopting both defensive as well as offensive cyber security measures. Whether it is critical ICT infrastructure protection or cyber security of defence forces of India, neither are in order till now, says Dalal. At last India has shown some sensitivity to the preventive and offensive capabilities in cyberspace that has been suggested by us more than five years ago, informs Dalal.

The outline though has been formulated yet it is an altogether different game to execute it. The proposed initiative would require many complex concepts like human rights protection in cyberspace (HRPIC), technical framework, legal framework, etc. The real challenge would be to formulate a techno legal framework that is presently missing in India.

Cyber War Capabilities Of India

At last India has decided to take some action on the front of protecting crucial and strategic computer systems and computer resources. India is in the process of formulating a blueprint for undertaking counter cyber warfare on unfriendly countries.

Attacks on the strategic and military computers have been on rise in India. Various reports have suggested that many military and crucial government departments have been systematically and continuously targeted by cyber criminals.

The National Security Council (NSC) is considering a proposal that would enable the Indian agencies to enhance capabilities to exploit weaknesses in the information systems of other countries and also collect online intelligence of key military activities.

The project would be given effect to by National Technical Research Organisation (NTRO), the Defence Intelligence Agency (DIA) and the Defence Research and Development Organisation (DRDO).

It is also planned that laboratories would be set up in research institutions to simulate cyber attacks with the help of ethical hackers. These laboratories would also training intelligence agencies for offensive and defensive cyber warfare techniques.

Even cyber forensics capabilities would also be developed to analyse attacked computers. Imported software and hardware would also be analysed for backdoors and malware. A separate Computer Emergency Response Team (CERT) for various crucial sectors would also be established.

This proposal is a good step in the right direction provided it is not just another promise with no will and expertise to execute it.