‘Cyber attacks and cyber terrorism are the new threats’

March 26th, 2009 - 9:03 pm ICT by IANS  

New Delhi, March 26 (IANS) Cyber attacks and cyber terrorism are the new looming threats on the horizon and the country needs to focus on specific areas to guarantee cyber security, a senior government official said Thursday.
“There could be attacks on critical infrastructure such as telecommunications, power distribution, transportation, financial services, essential public utility services and others,” said cabinet secretary K.M. Chandrasekhar after inaugurating a Central Bureau of Investigation (CBI) Conference on International Police Cooperation against Cyber Crime here.

“The damage can range from a simple shutdown of a computer system to a complete paralysis of a significant portion of critical infrastructure in a specific region or even the control nerve centre of the entire infrastructure,” he said.

“We must share information to make sure that we are able to trace the evidence to its origin. We must be able to preserve and protect electronic evidence. We must exchange information on a regular basis on criminals and criminal acts. We must look at our laws and determine whether there could be international standards for such laws. We must be in a position to coordinate action all over the world to deal with crises, as and when they occur,” he said.

The conference organised in association with the Council of Europe was attended by senior officers from security agencies from across the country, internet service providers, financial institutions and e-commerce websites.

Speaking at the conference CBI Director Ashwani Kumar stressed that wider awareness about cyber crimes, enforcement of legal rules and greater co-operation is the need of the hour.

“Recent terrorists’ attacks in Mumbai in November 2008 and previous such instances are proof as to how technology has been misused by the terrorists to commit crimes and attack the sovereignty of the nation,” Kumar said.

He said that the Voice over Internet Protocol (VoIP) which was till now used for free communication by people had been used by terrorists to bypass governmental regulatory controls.

“CBI and a number of States in India have set up cyber crime investigation cells. But a lot has to be done to make people report cyber crimes and even more to solve them. I can say, as a policeman, there can be no bigger worry than people not reporting a crime due to lack of faith in law enforcement agency’s capabilities. We are determined not to let this happen and rather make people repose their faith in our abilities,” Kumar added.

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