CERT-in may be exempted from giving information under RTI Act

Context: Central Government has informed Parliament that Indian Computer Emergency Response Team (CERT-in) may soon be exempt from responding to queries under the Right to Information Act.

Major Highlights: 

  • The Department of Personnel and Training has reviewed a proposal from the Ministry of Electronics and Information Technology to include CERT-in in the Second Schedule to the RTI Act, which deals with exempted organisations like the Central Bureau of Investigation (CBI) and the Border Security Force.
  • The exemption would allow CERT-in to reject any application for information, even on policy-related matters. 

About CERT:

  • Indian Computer Emergency Response Team (CERT-IN) is the nodal agency to deal with cyber security threats like hacking and phishing and strengthens the security-related defence of the Indian Internet domain. 
  • CERT-IN was formed in 2004 by the Government of India under Information Technology Act, 2000 Section (70B). 
  • It is an office within the Ministry of Electronics and Information Technology
  • CERT-In has been designated to serve as the national agency to perform the following functions in the area of cyber security:
    • Collection, analysis and dissemination of information on cyber incidents.
    • Forecast and alerts of cyber security incidents.
    • Emergency measures for handling cyber security incidents.
    • Coordination of cyber incident response activities.
    • Issue guidelines, advisories, vulnerability notes and whitepapers relating to information security practices, procedures, prevention, response and reporting of cyber incidents.

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