Coming soon: National unified cyber security taskforce

  • Alarmed at the growing danger from cyberattacks and threats to national security, the government is in the process of setting up a unified national-level cyber security taskforce with a special focus on the risks emanating from the telecom sector.
  • The timing: The government is also finalising a “trusted sources” list for procuring telecom gear as the country moves towards 5G and other sophisticated telecom and immersive technologies, but with negligible procurement from China and other countries inimical to India’s security interests.
  • “The PMO has been informed about the efforts to explore the possibility of setting up a sub department for Telecom Cyber Security under a unified national level cyber security taskforce instead of setting up a separate taskforce under the telecom ministry,” a source told TOI, adding that the task force is expected to be in place by March next year.
  • Tell me more: The telecom department will develop an internal taskforce with the relevant skill sets and capabilities required specifically for the telecom sector. “This sub task force will work in conjunction with the unified national-level cyber security task force that has been envisaged,” the source said, adding that 20 officers have already been identified for getting embedded into the project. “There are also plans to add more officers, with specialised skills sets, to this team as we move forward.”
  • Currently: Cyber threats are handled by the specialised Indian Computer Emergency Response Team or CERT-In, which operates under the ministry of electronics and IT.

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