India requires 3 million cybersecurity experts

The COVID19 pandemic has led to organisations making a lot of changes in their way of working. But what efforts has the government been making to ensure a strong cybersecurity infrastructure?

“During the pandemic most organisations had adapted to work from home in which cybersecurity is playing a crucial role. Unauthorised intrusion cybersecurity vulnerability is being discussed widely,” said IPS Loknath Behera, Managing Director, Kochi Metro Rail Ltd, addressing delegates at W.Media’s digital event ‘SA Enterprise & Cloud Cyber Security Summit’.

He further added that the number of attacks have significantly increased and people are earning money by doing that.

Giving an example he explained that going by the current IT infrastructure in India, we need over 3 million cybersecurity experts but, currently there are only 10 thousand. It is important for organisations to spend money on cybersecurity infrastructure but less than 1 percent cost is being used for cybersecurity. Even after an existing law, enough money is not being spent on cybersecurity and there are less number of cybersecurity experts.

“We always talk about how critical is cybersecurity and the important steps that need to be taken. But nothing really happens even after discussing it,” added Behera.

He further explained that it is also important for schools to incorporate cybersecurity in the curriculum. It should be treated as important as protecting one’s own house.

“Over the period of time. People who are good at making unauthorised entry in systems have become bolder and stronger due to their anonymity and traceability. We are moving forward in  IT but we are not moving in cybersecurity.

Recently the central government of India had sent a note to the metro saying that while preparing a DPR there should be a separate chapter on cybersecurity which means that we have to hire an expert for the same. We have to put a cybersecurity expert along with other engineers to ensure that the IT enabled metro’s are also secure,” said Behera.

He further explained that the cybersecurity policy of 2013 of the central government of India gives a lot of do’s and don’ts for organisations to follow but it is unsure as to how many of them are actually following the guidelines.

Giving an example he explains that for every official email which is sent, the authorities should go to NIC mails due to security reasons but many people don’t follow this and vulnerability is created and authorities face cybersecurity related incidents.

“Building a cybersecurity infrastructure not only requires funds but also the will to implement it. It is important to think about what kind of security can be implemented and how organisations can deal with a data breach related incident,” said Behera.

Even in terms of social media the security part is important. Do’s and don’ts are laid out by experts but it is also on us are we complying with those instructions. They say don’t click on the unknown link but due to curiosity we click on that link and damage is done.

“It is important to make a robust cybersecurity infrastructure for India and  it has to be the strongest otherwise everything will be out in the open and the data could be at risk,” Behera concluded.

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