A must for all SSB Candidates Cyber Security In India
CYBER SECURITY IN INDIA: ISSUES AND CHALLENGE
Recently ,the world has witnessed the worst and the largest ever of its kind ransomware (a kind of malware) attack that affected at least 200,000 computers in 150 countries ,including those in india. Wannacry ,as the ransomware was called, is a crypto-ransomware that brough tout thousands to tears around the globe. wannacry encrypts data on a computer within seconds and displays a message asking the user to pay a ransom of$300 in bitcoins to restore access to the device and the data inside.
As a result of this ransomware hospitals in britian were forced to turn away some patients as their operating systems were infected, in france Renault shutdown productions at several plats and in Russia, the ransomware knocked thousands of computers offline at the interior ministry.
Earlier in October 2016, data breach in some of the leading banks in india was reported wherein around 3.2 million debit cards were compromised.many users reported unauthorised use of their cards in locations in china. The banks blocked and re-issued around six lakh debit cards to customers.
All these incidents have exposed a stark warning about the vulnerabilities of our digital, inter –connected world and have raised the questions about the security of our cyber space.
“the computeris the instrument of our age :cybercase is the oxygen of the internet”-shashi kapoor
Cyberspace is a domain characterised by the use of electronics and the electromagnetic spectrum to store, and exchange data via networked systems and associated physical infrastructure.it is a term associated with application of the internet worldwide.
Unlike the physical world that is limited by geographical boundaries in space- land,sea,river,waters and air-cyberspace is continuing to expand and has no geographical limitation .in other words, it is a the total interconnectedness of human beings through computers and telecommunication without regard to physical geography. A nation’s cyberspace is part of the global ,cyberspace ;it cannot be isolated to define its boundaries since cyberspace is borderless.this is what makes cyberspace so unique.
The rise in the internet population has meant that while the threats and vulnerabilities inherent to the internet and cyberspace might have remained more or less the same as before the probability of disruption has grown apace with the rise in the number of users.while such disruptions are yet to cause permanent or grievous dam age worldwide, they serve as a wake up call to the authorities concerned to initiate measures to improve the security and stability of cyberspace in terms of their own security.
Cyber security is a broad spectrum phrase and relates to preventing any form of unauthorized and malafide access to a personal computer, laptop,smartphone or a major network like the national banking system or the railways network or a national information technology asset that also has military implications.whether it is for the email ,social networking ,net banking or mobile baking, almost everyone is dependent on the internet and hence potentially vulnerable
To a layman, cyber security means simple things such as a: a password that is not stolen, a message that remains confidential, a child that is not exposed to a stalker or paedophlic online. When they type in a web address, that is where they should go and not to a spam site. When stick a link that looks genuine,t hey should not be cheated by a plausible fraud.their work online should not be tampered with, and so on.
Cyber security, thus is a complex issue that cuts across multiple domains and calls for multi-dimensional, multilayered initiatives and response .it has proved a challenge for governments all ground the world. The task is made difficult by the inchoate and diffuse nature of the threats and the inability to frame an adequate response in the absence of tangible perpetrators.
Therefore,cyber security is more than just information security or da security ,but is nevertheless, closely related to those two fields, because information security lies at the heart of the matter.
NEED FOR CYBER SECURITY
To ensure critical infrastructure systems do not collapse under any situation.
To ensure business continuity
To ensure disaster recovery plans are tested regularly and upgraded.
For the success of government initiatives like digital india, make in india and smart cities.
The primary aim of cyber security in concerned with making cyberspace safe from threats, namely cyber threats.the notion of cyber-threats is rather vague and implies the malicious use of information and communication technologies(ICT)either as a target or as a tool wide range of malicious actors.
THREATS TO CYBER SECURITY
Cyber security ranges across wider terrain.cyberspace is in fact considered as a potential theatre of war along with land,sea,air and space.international relations theorist has identified four different types of threats to cyberspace.
Cyber warfare is an internet-based conflict involving units which are organized along nation-state boundaries in overt or covert operations, utilizing computers guided programmes to attack and attempt to damage another nation’s computer networks through electronic means.it is an unauthorized invasion by a government into the systems or networks of another, aiming to disrupt or damage them partially or destroy entirely.
Cyber warfare attacks can disable websites and networks, disrupt or disable essential services, steal or classified data,and cripple financial systems.hackers and individuals trained n software programming which often operate under the possible aegis and support of nation state actors or international organization are the primary executors of these attacks.
As our military establishment became more and more dependent on sophisticated attacks on them equally sophisticated attacks on them have grown.there is no point having excellent missiles and weapons if the delivery systems can be paraylsed. thus although cyber war would not actually be a war because there aren’ losses of human lives, but the crippling effect of cyber invasion could turn out to be a nightmare for security agencies and military establishments.
It is also a form of cyber warfare whereby a nation state conducts sabotage and espionage against another nation in order to cause disruption or to extract some strategic or classified data.
Governments can invade the systems of their rivals to steal sensitive and strategic information that would be useful for their own purposes these attacks are usually hard to discover, for example operation shady rat (first reported by mcafee in 2011 and prism espionage programme of us government (exposed edward snowden) are considered as some of the world’s biggest hacking programmes ever.for a considerable period of time the hackers had access to more than 70 government and private agencies around the world as they secreted away gigabytes of confidential and classified information .being unknown to those at the receiving end.in the case of shady rat alone by the time it was spotted ,49 networks had been infected in the united states along with several others in india, south korea, Taiwan and elsewhere.
It is the third kind of threat ,and the most familiar one which affects the lives of ordinary internet users more closely even while this also has military and political implications. It is conducted by individuals working alone, or in organized groups with intent of extracting money ,data or causing disruption.cyber crime can take many forms including the financial and intellectual property fraud,i mparing the operations of a website or service, child pornography, Internet stalking and personality imitation other forms of cyber crimes include cyber defamation ,digital forgery, online gambling, online sale of illegal articles, e-mail,spamming etc.
Cyber terrorism is the unlawful and illegal attacks or threats of attacks against computer networks and information stored therein which is done to intimidate a government or its people in furtherance of political and social objectives.it is the use of cyberspace to shutdown critical national infrastructures such as energy, transportation, government operations or financial services to coerce a government to its civilian populations.
Cyber terrorism also includes websites spreading extremist propaganda, recruiting sympathizers, planning terrorist attacks and otherwise promoting terrorists’ political and social objectives.it also involves the use of hackers by terrorist to debilitate states and government, much like in cyber war,with the differencethat this involves a non-state actor. The government has taken a number of measures for terrorist-related activities especially in the aftermath of the 2008 terrorist attack in Mumbai.
There is a growing nexus between the hackers an the terrorists.the day is not far when terrorists themselves will be excellent hackers. That will change the entire landscape of terrorism.a common vision is required to ensure cyber security and prevent cyber crimes.