In addition to the mutating coronavirus, we are also facing digitally mutated viruses threatening critical infrastructure. The Indian Home Ministry informed the Parliament that cyber-attacks have risen exponentially from 394,499 recorded in 2019, to 1,158,208, in 2020. These attacks have targeted power grids, nuclear plant (Kudankulan), space agency (ISRO) and the covid-19 vaccine cold chain. In recent months, 4 out of 5 regional load despatch centres which oversee power distribution across India have also faced cyberattacks. To deal effectively with such cyber attacks, a three pronged approach of early detection, quick reaction once detected and preventive measures need to be taken. India has an emergency response agency (CERT-In) and a National critical information infrastructure protection centre (NCIIPC). Multiplicity of agencies and lack of procedural guidelines has led to the proverbial too much water flow before dam gates are closed. These instances are occuring world over. Last month the largest oil pipeline in the US was targeted by ransomware. The US government has now made cybersecurity a national priority in the wake of high profile intrusions. Critical infrastructure breaches have to be reported to the federal government. India is releasing a new cybersecurity strategy later in 2021 that is expected to bring all cyber agencies under a single umbrella, treat data as a national resource, establish guidelines for cyber audit and build indigenous capacity. India is also entering into cooperative agreements with Australia for e.g. to improve both the countries’ cyber resilience.Cross border cooperation to build defence systems that shield critical infrastructure from cyber attacks is utterly necessary. Incapacitation of these critical computer resources will have debilitating effects on national security, health and safety.
Necessary cookies are absolutely essential for the website to function properly. This category only includes cookies that ensures basic functionalities and security features of the website. These cookies do not store any personal information.
Any cookies that may not be particularly necessary for the website to function and is used specifically to collect user personal data via analytics, ads, other embedded contents are termed as non-necessary cookies. It is mandatory to procure user consent prior to running these cookies on your website.