How India Is Building An Ecosystem Around Cybersecurity

Cybersecurity India

Because of the ever-changing nature of cyber threats, the government in India seems to have realised the dire need for cybersecurity initiatives, to come together under a National Cyber Security Policy, with a unified vision and a set of sustained and coordinated strategies for implementation. 

In light of the burgeoning digital sector in India, ambitious plans for quick transformation and rapid growth, the role of IT infrastructure is critical. At the same time, it needs a secure computing environment and enough trust and confidence in digital banking transactions, software, services, devices and networks across the nation.

Such a focus enables the creation of a suitable cybersecurity ecosystem in the country, in tune with a globally networked environment. The overall market for cybersecurity is expanding fastly in both India and across the world. 

While India has been lagging behind other nations when it comes to cybersecurity and in fact had no cybersecurity policy before 2013, in the last few years much has changed, and the government’s plans are on a fast track to fostering cybersecurity. 

There are various ongoing initiatives and programs of the Indian government to fight the cybersecurity challenges, which have significantly added to the creation of a platform that is now capable of supporting and sustaining the efforts in securing cyberspace. 

Because of the ever-changing nature of cyber threats, the government in India seems to have realised the dire need for cybersecurity initiatives, to come together under a National Cyber Security Policy, with a unified vision and a set of sustained and coordinated strategies for implementation. 

Specialised Projects

Several projects are aiming to establish India as a leading hub by accelerating identification and development of cybersecurity technologies in the country to further strategic objectives, develop critical capabilities, exploit commercial potential, and thereby driving future-readiness. 

For example, Data Security Council of India (DSCI) is building a world-class infrastructure for creating momentum for cybersecurity technology development at its NOIDA campus. The program was formally launched in January 2020. It includes incubation for startups, state-of-the-art technology research lab, a unique infrastructure for things like forensics and testing, security training and R&D.

Moving forward, National Centre of Excellence (CoE) for Cyber Security Technology Development is an idea conceptualised by Ministry of Electronics & IT and DSCI for setting up connected and coordinated efforts to foster cybersecurity development in India. National CoE initiative stands strong on three pillars, which envisages connected and concerted efforts for cybersecurity technology development by identifying critical technology areas and use cases, productizing security research, and extending physical and virtual incubation along with facilitation adoption.

Also Read: Is India Ready To Tackle Cybersecurity Issues With Crypto Assets?

Fostering Cybersecurity Startups And Product Companies 

With an ecosystem of more than 200 product companies, Indian cybersecurity product segment has embarked upon success, and more than 70% of these companies and startups have come to exist just in the last 10 years with some having 60%+ Y-O-Y growth rate across new age cybersecurity startups.

The government is also working to enhance cybersecurity startups. The government is working to create an ecosystem of cybersecurity technology development and entrepreneurship. Under this, security startups need to be incubated so that innovative solutions can be developed. 

Some of the aspects of startup-promoting initiatives include:

Translating R&D to security product; Enhancing technology stack of security products; Market adoption of developed products; Making India destination for R&D and product development.

Under a Cyber Security Grand Challenge, startups had to create solutions around six areas, including microservices, IoT, biometrics, hardware security, among others. A ‘Security Grand Challenge’ awarded Rs 3.2 crore to breakthrough startups.

The stakeholder ecosystem consists of global players, research institutes, academia, startups, investors, security researchers, Indian security leaders, technology players, and enterprises. Together, they can be leveraged and brought together in a tightly linked ecosystem to create momentum for cybersecurity product entrepreneurship. 

National CyberSecurity Policy

National Cyber Security Policy is a policy framework developed by the Department of Electronics and Information Technology (DeitY) whose objective is to safeguard the public and private infrastructure from cyber attacks.

As part of India’s National CyberSecurity Policy, the draft of National Cyber Security Strategy 2020, which envisions building secure cyberspace in India, will be shortly sent to relevant ministries for comments before seeking the Cabinet approval, according to reports. The policy is being worked upon to close the gaps and meet the talent and product requirements under the National Cyber Security Policy 2020. 

National Level Computer Emergency Response Team

A National Level Computer Emergency Response Team (CERT-In) acts 24*7*365 as a Nodal Agency for coordination of all initiatives and projects for dealing with cybersecurity emergency response and crisis. CERT-In also serves as an umbrella organisation in enabling creation and operationalisation of sectoral CERTs and helping in the communication and coordination efforts in managing cyber crisis situations.

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Vishal Chawla
Vishal Chawla is a senior tech journalist at Analytics India Magazine and writes about AI, data analytics, cybersecurity, cloud computing, and blockchain. Vishal also hosts AIM's video podcast called Simulated Reality- featuring tech leaders, AI experts, and innovative startups of India.

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