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Regulate sensitive data on Internet: India

An Indian delegate cautioned that making high resolution pictures of countries freely available, is being misused for terror activities.

india Updated: Oct 13, 2006 10:29 IST

India wants the world to quickly evolve a policy to check free availability of high-resolution imageries of sensitive areas on the Internet in view of the security threats posed by terrorists.

Recently there has been a trend towards making high-resolution imageries of sensitive areas of all countries available on the Internet freely and in an unrestricted manner, Indian delegate KP Kumaran noted at a UN general assembly committee meeting Thursday on international cooperation in the peaceful uses of outer space.

"Keeping in mind the present security threats that every nation is facing, including from terrorists and their organisations, it is of utmost importance to quickly evolve policy guidelines to regulate the availability of such sensitive data in the public domain," he said.

Developing countries today face a number of challenges in terms of improving their agriculture, water resources management, eradicating illiteracy, providing better education to their people, improving public health services and providing timely disaster management support.

"To meet these challenges we need to strengthen the capabilities of member states, especially developing countries, to use the results of space research for economic, social and cultural development," Kumaran said.

The UN Programme on Space Applications has played an important role in implementing the recommendations of the UNISPACE-III, particularly in improving the capacity building of developing countries to apply space technology to support sustainable development efforts.

India strongly supports the establishment of an Entity for Space Systems Based Disaster Management Support named as SPIDER, he said.

It is of the view that the use of space based systems to address disaster management issues, so as to benefit the affected population in a timely manner, would require proper integration of the space and ground based segments.

In India, the space programme evolved to provide for the socio economic development of the country.

This led to specific user-driven application programmes through the use of remote sensing, meteorological and communications satellite systems, Kumaran said outlining the significant achievements made by India in the space field.

The effective utilisation of space application programmes is very important for the overall prosperity and development of a nation.

With increased dependence on and use of space-based systems, it should be everyone's responsibility to maintain the outer space exclusively for peaceful purposes, he said.