Monthly Archives: February 2013

Cyber Security Forums Of India And Techno Legal Forums In India

Cyber Security Forums Of India And Techno Legal Forums In IndiaPerry4Law Organisation has been discussing Techno Legal and Cyber Security related aspects for long. Perry4Law Law Firm is the chief Legal Division of Perry4Law Organisation that has been providing Techno Legal Services in India and abroad.

Perry4Law Organisation is managing many Blogs and Websites that are providing General and Specialised Expertise to various stakeholders. For instance, Perry4Law Organisation’s Blog is covering the general discussions whereas the blog titled Centre of Excellence for Cyber Security Research and Development in India (CECSRDI) is covering domain specific Cyber Security related discussions.

Perry4Law Organisation is also managing many good Techno Legal Forums. Perry4Law Organisation’s Forum is the Parent Forum whereas domain specific Forums are also managed by Perry4Law Organisation. For instance, the Cyber Security Forum of Perry4Law Organisation is covering Techno Legal Aspects of cyber Security in India and abroad.

Along with the Cyber Security Forum, there are numerous other techno Legal Forums that are providing Domain Specific and Highly Expertise based discussions. These are:

(1) Cyber Security Forum Of Perry4Law Organisation

(2) Cyber Law Of India And International Cyber Law

(3) Cyber Security News And Views

(4) Techno Legal Think Tank of India

(5) Techno Legal Centre Of Excellence For Cyber Forensics In India (TLCECFI)

(6) National Cyber Security Database of India (NCSDI)

(7) Intelligence Agencies And Law Enforcement Technology In India

(8) Cyber Security Research Centre Of India (CSRCI)

(9) International Critical ICT Infrastructure Protection In India

(10) National Critical ICT Infrastructure Protection In India

(11) International Cyber Law Treaty And Cooperation

(12) International Cyber Security Treaty And Cooperation

(13) International Legal Aspects Of Cyber Security

(14) National Legal Aspects Of Cyber Security In India

(15) Cyber Crimes Investigation In India

We would keep on updating on this topic from time to time. Further, we would also add more Forums and Sub Forums as well.

Perry4Law Organisation is also managing many Discussion Groups. These include:

(1)  Cyber Law Revisited

(2) Cyber Security Research Centre Of India (CSRCI)

(3) Intelligence Agencies And Law Enforcement Technology In India

(4) National Cyber Security Database of India (NCSDI)

(5) Techno Legal Centre Of Excellence For Cyber Forensics In India (TLCECFI)

(6) Techno Legal Think Tank of India

(7) Websites, Blogs And News Censorship By Google And India

Perry4Law Organisation hopes that these Forums and Discussion Groups would prove useful to all concerned.

Source: Perry4Law Organisation’s Blog.

Mobile Service Providers Of India Shall Use Indian Made SIM Cards

Mobile Service Providers of India Shall Use Indian Made SIM CardsCyber security issues in India are increasingly becoming part of Indian policy decisions. The cyber security policy of India is also witnessing this change. One significant shift in this regard can be found in the way India has been planning to use various hardware and software.

India has been pushing use of indigeneously made hardware and software. Further, India has also declared its intention to make cyber security awareness brochures in India mandatory for hardware sale. It is clear that India is becoming serious about its national security and cyber security.

There is no second opinion that mobile banking cyber security in India and mobile cyber security in India are absolutely required. Similarly, the decision of Indian government to ban import of mobiles or cell phones in India with fake IMEI numbers is also justified.

We have no dedicated cell phone laws in India or mobile phone laws in India though they are very much required. However, some solace can be found in the form of governmental directions given from time to time.

Taking another step in ensuring mobile cyber security in India, the Indian government has now shown its concern that SIM cards, used by more than 900 million mobile users in the country, can be a major threat to national security as these might have been produced with malicious embedded software.

To ensure security, the Department of Telecommunications (DoT) has recommended that mobile service providers should manufacture the SIM cards in India with indigenously designed chips incorporating specific laid down standards. The DoT has also recommended that the clause should also be included in the proposed Cyber Security Policy.

The DoT has also proposed imposition of tax on imports of SIM cards till complete indigenous production is ensured. However, mobile companies will have to seek security clearances for such procurements.

Source: Cyber Security Issues In India.

Mobile Banking Cyber Security Is Required In India

MR.B.S.DALAL-SENIOR-PARTNER-OF-PERRY4LAWMobile banking in India is moving towards an acceptance level. However, till now very few people and institutions are comfortable in using mobile banking in India. Mobile banking in India is still not popular according to RBI. There are certain shortcomings of mobile banking in India that are still left unaddressed.

For instance, mobile governance in India is still not well established. M-governance in India is essential before mobile banking can be successfully implemented in India. We have no regulatory framework for m-governance in India. Even the proposed electronic delivery of services bill 2011 of India has failed to provide a mandatory legal framework for electronic delivery of services in India, including for mobile banking. In short, India is still not ready for m-governance and cloud computing especially in the absence of dedicated e-commerce laws in India.

Mobile banking in India is risky due to absence of mobile cyber security in India. Further, online banking system of India is not secure. In the absence of adequate cyber security safeguards, e-banking in India is not safe. The cyber security trends in India 2011 have also proved that Internet banking cyber security in India is in poor shape and it needs to be strengthened. Even data security, privacy and cyber security in Indian banking industry is not satisfactory.

Online banking risks in India are increasing and this is also shaking the confidence of customers in the same. Even RBI has acknowledged risks of e-banking in India. ATM frauds in India are increasing. In fact, Reserve Bank of India (RBI) has recently released the report of its working group on securing card present transaction that covers ATM security and credit card security issues as well. Internet banking risks in India cannot be effectively tackled till we have dedicated Internet banking laws in India.

Although an integrated banking law of India has been proposed yet it may take some years before it is actually enacted. In an interesting development, the RBI removed limits from mobile banking transactions limits in India. This is good for the development of mobile banking in India but is bad for the interests of mobile banking customers who have almost no safeguards against cyber crimes and technology assisted financial frauds happening in the mobile banking field.

The cyber law in India has prescribed cyber law due diligence for various stakeholders. Cyber due diligence for banks in India is just a part of the same. Cyber due diligence for Indian companies including banks operating in India is very stringent. However, Indian banks are not following the guidelines of RBI prescribing mandatory cyber security requirements for banks of India. Further, banks are also liable

Even on the policy front, mobile banking has received a bad response form Indian government. For instance, absence of effective encryption laws in India and non use of robust encryption in India has made the mobile security very weak in India. Instead of making the encryption requirements redundant and weak, India must concentrate upon further strengthening the same for better and secure mobile communications. Governments of most developed countries allow the usage of strong encryption standards ranging from 128 bits to 256 bits or more to ensure the security of sensitive information exchanged via Internet and other networks. However, India is still clinging to 40 bits encryption standards for the simple reason that intelligence and security agencies of India are not capable enough to break strong encryptions.

A weak mobile banking infrastructure would also affect other projects and schemes as well. For instance, recently the Securities and Exchange Board of India (SEBI) has declared about its intentions to introduce electronic initial public offer (E-IPO) in India. This is a good step but E-IPO cannot succeed in the absence of strong mobile banking and Internet banking infrastructure. Online payments mechanisms in India must also be suitable strengthened to make such proposals workable.

India must give these considerations some serious thoughts if it wishes to encash the benefits of technology. Otherwise, concepts like Internet banking and mobile banking are more nuisance than luxury in India.

Source: ICTPS Blog.

Mobile Cyber Security In India Is Needed

GEETA DALALMobile phones have become ubiquitous these days. They are used for multiple purposes ranging from personal use to mobile banking. Cyber criminals have also realised the importance of mobile phones for committing cyber crimes and financial frauds. This is also the reason why malware writers are also writing mobile phone specific malware to steal confidential and sensitive information.

Mobile cyber security in India has become a cause of concern these days. Mobile phones are now proposed to be used for mobile banking and mobile governance in India. Naturally, we must ensure robust mobile cyber security in India. An electronic authentication policy of India can help in more active and secure mobile usages in India. Mobile governance and e-authentication in India are also closely related and with the proposed electronic delivery of services in India this is also a must have requirement.

For the time being we have no implementable electronic delivery of services policy of India though it may be in pipeline. Indian government is working in the direction of ensuring electronic delivery of services in India. In fact a legal framework titled electronic delivery of services bill 2011 (EDS Bill 2011) has also been proposed by Indian government.

Once the EDS Bill 2011 becomes an applicable law, governments across the India would provide electronic services through various modes, including mobile phones. This requires putting a robust and reliable mobile security infrastructure in India.

However, using of mobile phones for commercial and personal transactions in India is also risky. For instance, the mobile banking in India is risky as the present banking and other technology related legal frameworks are not conducive for mobile banking in India. Similarly, we do not have a well developed e-governance infrastructure in India. As a result India is still not ready for m-governance.

We at Perry4Law and Perry4Law Techno Legal Base (PTLB) believe that the biggest hurdles before the mobile related uses in India pertain to use of weak encryption standards and non use of mobile cyber security mechanisms in India. Absence of encryption laws in India has further made the mobile security very weak in India.

The ever evolving mobile malware are further increasing the woes of mobile users’ world wide. Recently 50 applications within Google’s official Android Market were found to be contaminated with DroidDream malware. The malware stole sensitive information like phone’s International Mobile Equipment Identity (IMEI) Number and the SIM card’s International Mobile Subscriber Identity (IMSI) number. It then sent it to a command-and-control server. Similarly, other spyware and bugs are also infecting mobile phones worldwide.

It is high time for India to seriously work upon mobile cyber security aspects as soon as possible. The policy decisions in this regard must be taken urgently and must be implemented as soon as possible.

Source: ICTPS Blog.

Mobile Cyber Security In India

Mobile Cyber Security In IndiaMobile phone has become an important aspect of our daily lives. We use mobile phone for multi purposes including mobile banking and mobile governance. With the use of third generation spectrum, even better, speedier and more productive use of mobile phones is now possible.

However, of all the benefits of use of mobile, we cannot ignore the risks associated with it. For instance, the mobile banking in India is risky as the present banking and other technology related legal frameworks are not conducive for mobile banking in India.

Similarly, we do not have a well developed e-governance infrastructure in India. Naturally, India is still not ready for m-governance. India does not have any infrastructure, legal framework, policies and strategies and most importantly expertise to implement these ambitious projects.

The biggest hurdles before the mobile related uses in India pertain to use of weak encryption standards and non use of mobile cyber security mechanisms in India, informs Praveen Dalal, managing partner of New Delhi based law firm Perry4Law. Absence of encryption laws in India has further made the mobile security very weak in India, says Dalal.

Mobile viruses and worms are further increasing the woes of mobile users’ world wide, claims Dalal. Recently 50 applications within Google’s official Android Market were found to be contaminated with DroidDream malware. The malware stole sensitive information like phone’s International Mobile Equipment Identity (IMEI) Number and the SIM card’s International Mobile Subscriber Identity (IMSI) number. It then sent it to a command-and-control server, informs Dalal. Similarly, other spyware and bugs are also infecting mobile phones worldwide

Instead of making the encryption requirements redundant and weak, India must concentrate upon further strengthening the same for better and secure mobile communications. Governments of most developed countries allow the usage of strong encryption standards ranging from 128 bits to 256 bits or more to ensure the security of sensitive information exchanged via Internet and other networks. However, India is still clinging to 40 bits encryption standards for the simple reason that intelligence and security agencies of India are not capable enough to break strong encryptions.

In fact, threats have been issued by Indian government to services providers providing encrypted mobile, e-mail and VOIP services. Gmail and Skype have been asked to provide the encryption keys to Indian government and its security agencies. However, neither Google nor Skype have admitted of receiving any such communication. India is also indirectly pressurising Blackberry to help India in its e-surveillance activities. These actions of Indian government would only make mobile security weaker.

Indian population is still not interested in mobile cyber security and if the default encryption protection is also taken away, mobile usage in India is definitely going to be suffered from malware attacks and cyber attacks. India must urgently concentrate upon mobile security so that these infected mobile cannot be used by criminals.

Source: Cjnews India.

Cyber Security Policy Of India

PRAVEEN DALAL MANAGING PARTNER OF PERRY4LAW CEO PTLBCyber Security is an issue that tries to protect and preserve the Information Technology Infrastructure (ITI) of a Nation. Since Cyberspace is boundary less it is possible to attack the ITI of any Nation from any place.

We are still dealing with the Cyber Security issues in India. Although India has formulated the Cyber Security Strategy but it is more on the side of prescribed guidelines alone. The practical and actual implementation of the same is still missing.

Policies and Strategies issues are best implemented practically and effectively if they are made part of the National Policies. Till now we have not formulated a National Cyber Security Policy of India that is implantable at National level.

The Cyber Security Policy of India must cover areas like Cyber Laws, Cyber Crimes, Transnational Technological Crimes, Cyber Attacks, Cyber Warfare, Cyber Terrorism, Cyber Espionage, Human Rights Protection in Cyberspace, Critical Infrastructure Protection Plan, Critical ICT Infrastructure Protection, Crisis Management Plan, etc.

Till now there is no National Cyber Security Policy of India that covers these issues and is implementing the same. Our websites are frequently defaced, strategic computers are often compromised, sensitive defence documents are occasionally stolen and cyber espionage against India is frequently committed.

I also understand that it is not possible to have an absolute Cyber Security. The notion of having an absolute Cyber Security is a “Myth” as we cannot ensure absolute Cyber security anywhere. There are exploits and vulnerabilities, both hardware and software based, that cannot be anticipated and tackled in advance. In fact, “Zero Days Exploits” are the most difficult one to anticipate and handle. In these types of exploits all Cyber Security Measures proves ineffective and futile.

Further, human beings are usually the weakest link in the Cyber Security infrastructure and Social Engineering is the easiest way to break into a Computer System. Besides being easy, Social Engineering can be incredibly cheap. Social Engineering is the hardest form of attack to defend against because an individual or organisation cannot protect itself with hardware or software alone.

Both Government Departments and Private Companies must have good employee’s awareness activities and information dealing policies in place and the employees must strictly follow these policies. The employees must be willing to ask relevant questions while dealing with a request to provide sensitive information.

Indian Government must also focus upon Techno Legal Cyber Security Skill Development for its employees and departments. Suitable Techno Legal Cyber Security Courses must be made available to Government departments and employees. All these issues must be made part of the Cyber Security Policy of India that should be formulated and implemented as soon as possible.

Source: ICTPS Blog.

Cyber Security Of Indian Satellites And Critical Infrastructure

GEETA DALALWe are living in a technology era where technology is both a friend and foe. It is up to us to work in this direction and ensure on which side technology should be. If technology is used for delivery of public services, we have the benefits of concepts like e-governance and e-commerce. On the other hand if the technology is used for causing wrong or harm to others we face concepts like cyber crimes, cyber attacks, cyber warfare and cyber terrorism.

Cyber warfare, in its basic form as well, is now a well accepted cyber threat. Cyber warfare against India is also well known and we must formulate a cyber warfare policy for India to counter such threats. Indian defense and security against cyber warfare needs to be upgraded and strengthened.

Similarly, terrorism and cyber terrorism are also posing big security problems for India. Indian counter terrorism capabilities are not sufficient and there is an urgent need to strengthen the same. Similarly, cyber espionage and cyber terrorism against India is also well known.

To start with we must have a robust and effective cyber security in India. We must also have an implementable cyber security policy of India. The cyber security policy must keep in mind both the preventive as well as offensive cyber attacks and cyber defense capabilities.

Critical infrastructure protection in India needs to be undertaken on a priority basis. We must have a critical infrastructure protection policy of India that must be strenuously followed by all governmental departments, organisations and even by private service providers.

For instance, supervisory control and data acquisition (SCADA) systems are a favourite target for cyber criminals and cyber terrorists. By targeting SCADA these cyber miscreants can damage the critical infrastructure of India. We must ensure sufficient cyber protection of SCADA systems in India in general and critical infrastructure in particular.

Malware like Stuxnet and Duqu have already shown how critical infrastructures and SCADA systems are vulnerable to cyber attacks. Indian critical infrastructures have also been targeted by these Malware. It is believed that Stuxnet was responsible for shutting down an Indian communication satellite. Similarly, these Malware have also been targeting Indian nuclear systems and facilities.

Even the government computers have been comprised successfully in India in the past. Recently Indian National Informatics Centre’s (NIC) server were compromised and used to attack computers of other nations. Even satellites of various nations have been compromised and taken control of by terrorists and enemy nations.

These developments are serious enough and they must be sufficient for Indian government to formulate an implementable cyberspace crisis management plan of India. Of course, national security policy of India, cyber security policy of India, critical infrastructure protection policy of India, cyber warfare policy of India, etc must be integral part of the same. The sooner these steps are taken the better it would be for the larger interest of India.

Source: ICTPS Blog.

DARPA Would Develop Offensive And Preventive Cyber Capabilities

DARPA Would Develop Offensive And Preventive Cyber CapabilitiesThe Defense Advanced Projects Research Agency (DARPA) has been working hard to develop its cyber capabilities. It includes both offensive and defensive cyber capabilities. The seriousness of United States in this regard is also apparent from the fact that the US government’s advanced research unit has decided to increase its funding for cyber research by 50 percent over the next 5 years. This has been decided in response to the increased threat of cyber terrorism and cyber warfare that US is facing.

The DARPA, held it’s first-ever symposium to discuss how the U.S. military can better protect itself from foreign-backed hackers. DARPA’s director, Regina Dugan, told conference members the agency will work to develop offensive cyber capabilities as well as maintaining defensive lines.

Recent cyber attacks on multinational firms and institutions, ranging from Google, Citigroup, U.S. Senate’s website to the International Monetary Fund, have raised fears that governments and the private sector are ill-prepared to beat off hackers. To tackle these sophisticated cyber criminals there is an urgent need to beef up offensive cyber capabilities.

DARPA’s conference would follow several months of discussion among security experts and military personnel as to how the U.S. should balance its offensive and defensive cyber weapons.

In a typical cyber attack by an enemy State, the critical infrastructure is the first choice. Estonia witnessed this truth in the past. Further, in cases of cyber warfare and cyber terrorism also critical infrastructure is the chief target of cyber attack. An international cyber security treaty can be a good solution for dealing with this problem at the international level.

Source: ICTPS Blog.

Offensive And Defensive Cyber Security Capabilities Of India

Offensive And Defensive Cyber Security Capabilities Of IndiaThere are many glaring cyber security problems of India and challenges and the chief among them is to protect the critical infrastructure of India that is dependent upon information technology. Cyber security issues in India like cyber warfare, cyber terrorism, cyber espionage, critical infrastructure protection, etc cannot be ignored by Indian government any more.

The cyber security reflections of India have not shown a good picture about India. We have no dedicated cyber security laws in India as well. Indian critical infrastructures are vulnerable to cyber attacks and we must ensure sufficient cyber security for the same. We at Perry4Law Techno Legal Base (PTLB) are managing some very effective techno legal cyber security in initiatives in India.

These include cyber security research and development centre of India (CSRDCI), national cyber security database of India (NCSDI), cyber forensics research centre of India, cyber crime investigation centre of India, cyber security centre of India, etc. These initiatives intend to strengthen the cyber security capabilities of India and resolve the cyber security issues and problems in India.

Maintaining cyber security at the international level is a tedious task. This is so because cyberspace does not recognizes any boundary and cyber attacks can be launched from any part of the world. While cyber attacks upon various computer systems and computer resources are cause of concern yet cyber attacks upon critical infrastructures is of grave concern.

Meanwhile, India is increasingly facing cyber attacks and cyber threats from foreign nationals. Cyber terrorism against India, cyber warfare against India, cyber espionage against India and cyber attacks against India has already increased a lot. Even the cyber law trends of India 2012 by various sources have also projected an increased rate of cyber crimes in India and cyber attacks against India in the year 2012.

The biggest cyber threat against India is originating in the form of cyber attacks upon Indian critical infrastructures. Critical infrastructure protection in India requires a well formulated policy. Presently we have no critical infrastructure protection policy of India. Further, critical ICT (Information and Communication Technology) infrastructure protection in India  is one area that requires special attention of Indian government.

In the present interconnected world, cyber security capabilities of India must be urgently developed. In fact, Indian critical infrastructure and cyber security challenges and issues have assumed so much significance that Indian government declared the establishment of National Critical Information Protection Centre (NCIPC) of India. It intends to ensure critical infrastructure protection and critical ICT infrastructure protection in India.

This is a good beginning and we at PTLB welcome this initiative of Indian government. At the same time we would keep on strengthening the techno legal cyber security capabilities of India from time to time.

Source: Cyber Security Issues In India.

Why Indian Critical Infrastructure Are Vulnerable To Cyber Attacks?

Why Indian Critical Infrastructure Are Vulnerable To Cyber AttacksIn the present interconnected world, cyber security capabilities of India must be urgently developed. In fact, Indian critical infrastructure and cyber security challenges and issues have assumed so much significance that Indian government declared the establishment of National Critical Information Protection Centre (NCIPC) of India.

The best way to ensure critical infrastructure protection in India is to make it a part of national cyber security policy of India. Various cyber security issues of India must also be part of such cyber security policy of India. Further, besides energy, defense, transportation and telecommunication, the financial sector which includes banks and stock exchanges must be suitably protected in India. Unfortunately, till now cyber security challenges of India remain unredressed.

The reliance of consumers and businesses on the cyberspace and interconnected networks would continue to increase. Critical industries like electric, water, oil and natural gas, transportation, automotive, and aerospace are increasingly dependent upon Industrial Control Systems like Supervisory Control And Data Acquisition (SCADA).

In fact, SCADA has become the new cyber attacks battlefield against India. An attack upon SCADA is essentially an attack upon the critical infrastructure of a nation. The SCADA systems may involve a human machine interface (HMI), a supervisory system managing the processes, remote terminal units (RTUs) interacting with the supervisory systems, programmable logic controller (PLCs) usable as field devices, etc.

Initially, running on proprietary control these have evolved with the availability of low-cost Internet Protocol (IP) devices, thus increasing the possibility of cyber security vulnerabilities and incidents.

The arrival of technology and augmented accessibility of broadband connectivity together with smart phones have eased the way in which consumer interacts and transacts online. Moreover, with the mass use of e-governance applications under the mission mode projects (MMPs) where citizen services are being provided online, human rights protection in cyberspace of digital citizens (netizens) must be ensured. This has resulted in the emergence of some very unique “Digital Issues” that were not available before the traditional governmental functioning.

Businesses are trying to cater this digital citizen by providing a whole host of applications operating at various platforms through various channels. Cyber security of these platforms, channels and applications are utmost important for the government and industry to ensure trust in the customer.

We must focus on the national cyber security elements- Framework, Machinery, Responsibility and Operations for all the critical information sectors like power, energy and finance. Suitable deliberations must take place with cyber security stakeholders of India on operating technologies like smart grid and industrial control system; the security and privacy imperatives of e-commerce, m-commerce and e-governance application and platforms. The cyber security ramifications at the global level must also be analysed. If Indian government is willing to protect t its critical infrastructures all these issues must be kept in mind.

Source: Cyber Security Issues In India.