Cisco to help govt deal with cyberattacks

Updated on Dec 23, 2016 10:59 AM IST

American technology services company Cisco has signed a memorandum of understanding (MoU) with the government’s Computer Emergency Response Team(CERT-In) to tackle issues related to cyberattacks in the country.

From left: IT minister Ravi Shankar Prasad, Cisco India president Dinesh Malkani and CERT­In director­general Sanjay Bahl exchanging documents in New Delhi on Wednesday(HT Photo)
From left: IT minister Ravi Shankar Prasad, Cisco India president Dinesh Malkani and CERT­In director­general Sanjay Bahl exchanging documents in New Delhi on Wednesday(HT Photo)
Hindustan Times | By, New Delhi

Demonetisation has given a big boost to digital payments, and also to the threat of cyber attacks in the country.

American technology services company Cisco has signed a memorandum of understanding (MoU) with the government’s Computer Emergency Response Team(CERT-In) to tackle issues related to cyberattacks in the country. India’s currently doesn’t have a national encryption policy,

CERT-In is a nodal agency under the ministry of electronics and IT (MeitY), which deals with cyber security threats such as hacking and phishing. It also strengthens security-related defence of the Indian Internet domain.

“In light of rapidly evolving cyber tactics and shared risks in cyberspace, the need to work side-by-side with industry partners on pressing cyber-challenges becomes important. Our collaboration with Cisco looks to enhance the security of India’s digital infrastructure and speed up digitalisation of India” electronics and IT minister Ravi Shankar Prasad said.

Cisco will open a security operations centre (SOC) in Pune, a cyber range lab in Gurgaon and a security and trust office (S&TO) to enhance cyber security capabilities. The announcement is as a part of the $100-million investment, which chairman and ex-CEO John Chambers had announced earlier in the year.

“The SOC will provide a broad range of services, from monitoring and management to comprehensive threat solutions and hosted security, which can be customised to meet customer needs,” said Dinesh Malkani, president for India and SAARC, Cisco. The facility will have 24-hour continuous monitoring and advanced analytics capabilities, he added.

Cisco currently has three SOCs globally, in Poland, the US and Japan. The company has also signed similar MoUs with the French and German governments.

“Most cyberattacks or breaches take an average detection time of 205 days from the time of breach,” Malkani said, adding, nearly 35 records are breached every second globally.

Earlier in the month, Prasad had said that e-wallet usage has seen an 271% increase in volume and 267% in value. “e-Wallets used to see 17 lakh transactions daily just before the demonetisation exercise was announced. But in just one month, wallets are seeing 63 lakh transactions per day. In terms of value, daily transactions rose from R52 crore to R151 crore daily.”

Malkani said the government has asked Cisco to train startups to help create more security solutions from India. This training will be provided by the cyber range lab.

While the SOC will be operational next quarter, the cyber range lab is already functioning.

”A significant amount of investment has gone into the facilities, and nearly 1,000 people, or 20% of our cybersecurity workforce, operates already from India. We can scale this up as the need arises,” he said.

Till date, Cisco has acquired 28 cybersecurity companies. The company expects India to have 702 million smartphone users and 670 million unique subscriber base by 2020.

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  • ABOUT THE AUTHOR

    Anirban Ghoshal was part of Hindustan Times’ nationwide network of correspondents that brings news, analysis and information to its readers. He no longer works with the Hindustan Times.

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