India besides facing conventional security threats faces the emerging threat of Cyber warfare being deployed by external state and non-state actors to attack Military and strategic establishments as well as civilian targets.
According to MHA – There was a three-fold increase in cyberattacks between 2019 to 2020.
Impact of cross border cyber-attacks –
- National security and sovereignty – used by terrorists for propaganda, incite hatred and violence, recruit youth and raise funds.
- Impact on data – Confidentiality and integrity of Citizen data. Ex- Cyber Attack on Air India led to leakage of passengers data.
- Impact on critical information infrastructure. Ex–Chinese state led Red Echo targeted the Indian power sector. Mumbai Blackout 2020
- Financial loss – Rs 1.25 lakh crores in 2019.
DEFENSIVE MEASURES –
- legal framework – Updating IT act 2000 and cyber security Policy 2013.
- Institutional Framework – Empowering National Critical Information Infrastructure Protection Centre (NCIIPC), CERT-IN and NATGRID, Cyber Insurance.
- Using Private sector expertise.
- Creating skilled cyber professionals.
- International –
- Global Collaboration under the Aegis of the UN.
- Acceding to Budapest Convention
To counter the Cyber security threats India needs to focus not just on defensive capabilities but also on developing offensive capabilities to create deterrence in the cyber space.