State gearing up to face threat from cyber criminals

State gearing up to face threat from cyber criminals

Blockchain technology, crypto sciences come as big help

With cyberspace turning into a playground for criminals who are emerging extremely clever, the State government is gearing up to tackle new threats like WannaCry Ransomware who leverage on crypto-currency mining and Remote Access Trojans.

The attackers are tech-savvy using artificial intelligence and machine learning and building toolsets like bots. The recent WannaCry Virus had partially hit the container operations at the Visakhapatnam Port forcing the authorities to handle ships owned by Maersk Lines manually.

Aware of the potential risks, the State government is taking bold steps to protect vital data. “We are also setting up a world-class cyber security research lab at the International Institute of Digital Technologies at Tirupati and 42 Labs with Israeli collaboration at the Sunrise Incubation Hub in Visakhapatnam,” Special Chief Secretary and IT Advisor to Chief Minister J.A. Chowdary told The Hindu.

Admitting that the hackers were using automated bots, could access servers, networks and IP addresses and hijack valuable data, he said: “They keep on trying firewall without manual interference causing nightmare to all concerned.”

Mr. Chowdary said as blockchain technology and cryptosciences had come as a big help, the government wanted to encourage startups and R&D institutes in a big way across the State. He said they were using the blockchain technology in road transport authority, land records and land registrations department as a pilot project. Depending on its response, it would be replicated in other departments.

Digital currencies were also being introduced for self-help groups. An awareness campaign had also been launched on how robotics could pose a threat if sufficient precautions were not taken.

IoT misuse

The biggest threat to India would be from using Internet of Things without checking the configuration and not changing passwords. Almost 90% of users do not change their passwords. Using WiFi also leaves crucial data making easy the job of the hackers to gain access to one’s email and digital ledgers.

On a request by AP, the Centre has agreed to set up one of the two Cyber Security Compliance and Cyber Security Assurance Testing Centres in the State.

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