War room to fight cyber wars, secure economy

A comprehensive policy must be put together to ring fence cyber fraudsters, mafia and hackers to insulate Indian financial markets.

Even as the RBI readies its plans to launch digital rupee later this year, government and the banking regulator’s big focus will have to be on insulating Indian economy from cyber frauds, graft and securing the country’s financial interests.
Enhancing economic security in the cyber world would be pre-requisite to further opening currency space through digital instruments. Given the cynical innovation in cyber-attacks that have been reported globally, scaling up the firewalls is the only option while making it a breeze for consumers to undertake financial transactions.
On the top of it, introduction of digital currency would lead to new vulnerabilities vis-à-vis fraudsters and possible instability that security breaches could lead to in the economy. Reports said that at least 900 Indians were scammed of over Rs 1,200 crore in an initial public offering of a non-existent crypto currency named “ICO”. This is only the tip of the iceberg in the world of cybercrimes on economic front.
While vetoing the proposal to introduce private crypto currencies, these concerns and impending economic uneasiness were flagged by the country’s central banker and RBI Governor Shaktikanta Das.
Finance Minister Nirmala Sitharaman will do well in rolling out a policy to secure India’s economic and financial interests in the cyber world. Union Budget to be presented on February 1 should kick off such a policy framework. Securing the financial ecosystem is particularly significant as more and more transactions are going online. As per data released by National Payments Corporation of India (NPCI), in December 2020 alone, over 4.56 billion transactions involving Rs 8.27 trillion (Rs 8.27 lakh crore) have gone online through united payments interface or UPI.
Akin to consultations on crypto currencies led by Prime Minister Narendra Modi, multi-stakeholders meeting on securing Indian economy in cyber space should be kicked off immediately.
As per Indian Computer Emergency Response Team (CERT-In), cybercrimes are on the rise in India. Till June 2021,…