Indian tech experts offer to help fight terror | india | Hindustan Times
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Indian tech experts offer to help fight terror

Since the recent terror attacks have been heavily based on high technology, Indian techies are exchanging mails across the country and abroad to get to the root of the problem, reports Sunita Aron.

india Updated: Sep 21, 2008 01:23 IST
Sunita Aron

Enter India’s technological might to fight terrorism. Since the recent terror attacks have been heavily based on high technology, Indian techies are exchanging mails across the country and abroad to get to the root of the problem.

They argue that since Indian techies have developed software and technologies for intelligence services of many countries, they could do it for the Indian intelligence agencies as well.

But curiously, the Indian government has been dithering over an IIT-Kanpur proposal to set up a technological centre to fight tech terror. It submitted a plan to the Union Home Ministry for a National Security Technological Research Centre three years ago. Although Union Minister of State for Home Affairs Sri Prakash Jaiswal himself is from Kanpur, the government didn’t bother.

Had the government acted then, the centre – in operation by now – would have been able to combat the recent spate of hi-tech terror strikes. The Rs 100-crore five-year project is aimed at assisting the ministry in improving the intelligence and warning systems, border, airport and port security and protection against biological and chemical weapons.

The director of IIT-Kanpur, Prof. S.G. Dhande, admitting that technology could be of vital use in countering terrorism, says his institute had developed encryption standards for the Indian Navy and was at present working on the automation of UP police stations.

IIT-K has also developed an R&D programme on Biometrics and its applications to several areas, including law enforcement, national citizenship card, forensic research, banking and airport authorities, said Dhande.

But the government apathy could not dampen the enthusiasm of the techies. Sanjeet Kumar, who works for a multinational in Kolkata, said, “We have a Yahoo group to spread cyber crime-related awareness through mails, articles and small videos. We are giving out the e-mail IDs and phone numbers of the departments concerned to register any information on bombs or any anti-national activities.”

He also said, “Some colleagues are even planning to develop software for high-zoom camera to track border infiltrations.”