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India plans cyber offensive against hackers

Last updated on: August 6, 2010 13:11 IST

India planning cyber war against hackers!

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The Indian government is set to launch a severe counter offensive after it faced several attacks on its computer systems especially from the Chinese hackers.

The government is now planning to build a network of ethical hackers to spy on the classified data of hostile nations by hacking into their computer systems, according to a report in The Economic Times.

Information Technology professionals and ethical hackers hired for the purpose will be protected by law, according to the government.

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Image: India to hire hackers.

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India plans cyber offensive against hackers

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India has to step up on its cyber offensive to match Chinese and Pakistani hackers breaching Indian cyber networks, Ankit Fadia, India's youngest and first certified ethical hacker had told PTI in May.

"The Indian intelligence and military agencies regularly use Indian hackers to carry out counter offensives. However, the quantum of such work being carried out here is a lot less than it is in countries such as China and Pakistan," Fadia said.

The government plans to use their technical expertise to plan offensive against spies and block strikes by breaching the security walls of enemy systems, says the report. 

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Image: Ankit Fadia.

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India plans cyber offensive against hackers

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Cyber experts have been suggesting the need to employ hackers to safeguard India's networks and ensure that the nation's systems are foolproof. They have also pointed out the lack of infrastructure in India to fight cyber crime and cyber terrorism.

In April 2010, a cyber group based in China had hacked into India's computer systems to steal sensitive documents from the India Defence Ministry.

A new report called 'Shadow in the Clouds' by Canadian and American researchers -- based at the Munk School of Global Affairs at the University of Toronto -- has said that a spy operation called 'Shadow Network' based in China has tapped into top secret files of the Indian government.

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Image: India to counter attacks.

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India plans cyber offensive against hackers

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In the investigations conducted over eight months, the report claimed that systematic cyber espionage was carried out from servers located in China that 'compromised' government, business, academic and other computer network systems in India.

The National Technical Research Organisation (NTRO) along with Defence Intelligence Agency (DIA) will be in charge of the cyber-offensive capabilities, says the ET report.

Set up in 2004, the NTRO is a premier apex scientific organization under the National Security Advisor in the Prime Minister's Office.

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Image: Cyber crime rises.

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India plans cyber offensive against hackers

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The NTRO acts as an agency for providing technical intelligence to other agencies on internal and external security. The agency is under the control of India's external intelligence agency, Research and Analysis Wing.

Under the Indian IT Act, hacking is a punishable offence with imprisonment up to three years, or calls for a penalty of upto Rs 2 lakh, or both. The government will make sure that the IT professional are protected by the law as the work involves ethical hacking.

With mounting instances of cyber attacks and espionage, several governments have already formulated an infrastructure to combat this menace.


Image: Hacking is a punishable offence.

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