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DNA MONEY EXCLUSIVE: Centre to train 6,000 people in bid to thwart cyber attacks

A collaborative, comprehensive live cyber-operations specific exercise training facility will be set up in the next three years by CDAC

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Aiming to strengthen cybersecurity, the Ministry of IT plans to formulate specific training programmes to step up the country's ability to tackle any cyber attack.

A live cyber-operations specific training facility will be set up and the plan is to train about 5000-6000 people initially, a senior official from the ministry told DNA Money on the condition of anonymity.

The training will focus on specific sectors including banking and finance, which are most prone to cyber attacks and other critical infrastructure areas will be also be covered.

A collaborative and comprehensive live cyber-operations specific exercise training facility will be set up in the next three years by Centre for Development of Advanced Computing (CDAC), Noida. The project's modalities are being finalised and it will be approved and rolled out soon.

The objective is to not only build the capacity and train people to counter any kind of cyber attack but also to recover from such attempts. This will also enable the organisations to identify weaknesses and improve their security measures and policies.

“With a shift towards a digital society, strong measures need to be put in place to create a robust framework for cybersecurity”, the official said.

There is a shortage of skilled manpower in the cyber space, according to experts.

The IT ministry, under Ravi Shankar Prasad, has set up a working group on cybersecurity which has been mandated to approve related projects to upgrade cyber skills/practices, investment in research and development and related policies to create a strong ecosystem around cyber space. It had its first meeting in December last year. Another meeting is expected to happen in March-April.

The ministry has also planned to set up a darknet/network telescope-based cybersecurity monitoring and interference framework in Bengaluru enabling the government to track malicious activity on the internet and warn about possible cyber attacks. The plan is to set up multiple research and development centres across the country for cybersecurity projects.

A malware detection framework, a solution for predicting multistage attacks using machine learning, video forensic tools, a design for objectionable video content detection using video analytics are some of the R&D projects being planned to cover strengthen all aspects of cybersecurity.

According to latest numbers, over 53,000 cybersecurity incidents like phishing, website intrusions and defacements, virus and ransomware attacks were observed in the country during 2017.

"As per the information reported to and tracked by Indian Computer Emergency Response Team (CERT-In), a total number of 44,679, 49,455, 50,362 and 53,081 cyber security incidents were observed during the years 2014, 2015, 2016 and 2017, respectively,” Minister of IT and Electronics Ravi Shankar Prasad had said in a reply to a Rajya Sabha question earlier this month.

According to available information, about 40% cyber attacks including ransomware, phishing and other related attacks are targeted at financial institutions and banks. It is estimated that out of 2.3 billion online transactions, about 0.15 billion were breached. This includes financial as well as other internet-related interactions.

KEEPING VIGIL

  • A collaborative, comprehensive live cyber-operations specific exercise training facility will be set up in the next three years by CDAC
     
  • The ministry has also planned to set up a darknet/network telescope-based cybersecurity monitoring and interference framework in Bengaluru enabling the government to track malicious activity on internet and warn about possible cyber attacks
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