Episode 125: India Needs to Promote Ethical Hacking to Shore Up Cyber Security

While a study says that India is witnessing heavy cyber-attacks from foreign shores, experts opine that cybersecurity systems will remain prone to breach unless the Indian government actively supports ethical hacking culture.

A recent study conducted by a Finnish cybersecurity company revealed that India had been the target of over 400,000 cyber-attacks from locations across five countries including China, Russia, and the US between January and June 2018. The study further claims that in comparison only around 73,000 attacks were initiated from India in the same period. Hackers in Russia, the US, China, the Netherlands, and Germany targeted India with 436,090 attacks. This is nearly 12 times more than the cyber-attacks which originated from India, according to F-Secure’s honeypot data.

Going by the same data, Russia accounted for most cyber-attacks on India (255,589), followed by the US (103,458), China (42,544), the Netherlands (19,169) and 15,330 attacks from Germany. On the other hand, the top five countries that were targeted by Indian cyber attackers were Austria, the Netherlands, the UK, Japan, and Ukraine, a total of 36,563. The relatively higher number of inbound attacks on Indian honeypots reflects how the fast-digitizing country is becoming more lucrative for global cybercriminals.

Cyber experts say that for India to cement its cyber alertness, it will have to promote its young minds who are pioneers in ethical hacking and counter cyber-attacks. The new age warfare is being fought on the cyberspace. The foolproof IT ecosystem has to be checked continuously and also proper offensive undertaken if the country has to be protected. India is blessed with brilliant minds that are pioneers world over in IT surveillance and security. But the country lacks a robust program to promote ethical hackers and to encourage them to work in counter cyber operations.

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