cyber security Current Affairs - 2020

India-Australia sign landmark Defence Agreements

On June 4, 2020, Indian PM Modi and the Australian PM Scott Morrison held India’s first virtual bilateral summit. The leaders signed several agreements during their meet and also discussed about the COVID-19 measures being implemented in their respective countries.

Highlights

India and Australia signed the following agreements namely

  • Framework Arrangement on Cyber Enabled critical Technology
  • MoU on cooperation in processing of Critical and Strategic minerals
  • Implementing arrangement related to cooperation in Defence
  • MoU on cooperation of training and vocational education
  • MoU on understanding water resource management
  • MoU un the field of Governance Reforms and Public Administration
  • MoU on cooperation in mining and processing of strategic minerals.

The Mutual Logistics Support Agreement signed will allow the countries to have access to each other’s military bases. The countries also decided to enhance their 2+2 foreign affairs and defence dialogues.

Background

The countries signed a framework of security cooperation in November 2014. This had laid the foundation for intensified defence, security and foreign policy exchanges between the countries. The countries also share a free open and prosperous Indo Pacific region. Australia supported for India’s non-permanent membership in the United Nations Security Council. Also, Australia backs India at the global initiatives such as Indo-Pacific and International Solar Alliance. Australia had also supported India for the membership of the later at the Wassenaar Arrangement and Australia Group. Also, Australia supports India for its membership to the Nuclear Suppliers Group.

NTRO: Increase in Cyber Attacks due to work from home

On April 29, 2020, the National Technical Research Organization has reported that the number of cyber attacks in the country has increased due to the work from home scenario. According to the report, the critical sectors may fall prey to inimical forces to relax geofencing restrictions that are granted to employees.

Highlights

The report says that many sectors including public enterprises, government undertakings, banking, power, telecom, transport, energy are susceptible to attacks. This has occurred mainly because several companies had relaxed their geofencing restrictions in order to allow their employees to work from home.

What is the issue?

Several cyber criminals have gone to an extent of impersonating officials from health organizations and other government enterprises, seek donations through malicious e-mail attachments.

Government Actions

In order to reduce this, the Ministry of Home Affairs has instructed the firms in the country to track all CRUD (Create, Read, Update and Delete) activities in their IdAM (Identity and Access Management). Also, the ministry has asked the firms to stay resilient against ransomware attacks.

National Technical Research Organization

The NTRO was set up in 2004. It is a technical intelligence agency that acts under the National Security Advisor of India in the Prime Minister Office. There are controversies that the NTRO is not yet completely functional. It requires more than 98 million USD to make the organization completely equipped.