In the wake of the Nupur Sharma incident, India has seen an increase in cyber activity with hackers, usually from abroad, breaking into or attempting to break into official websites and accounts. While rival nations frequently use cyber espionage techniques to steal information or damage vital infrastructure, this time, it was primarily pranksters trying to make a point. The government has a strong system to prevent such unwelcome events, but other websites, which frequently fall short on cyber security, cannot make the same claim. Due to this, incidents involving hacking into government websites and accounts only make up a small portion of all cyber breaches in India.
A total of 160,560 Indian websites were hacked between 2016 and 2021, according to Lok Sabha data. This equals an astounding 73 websites each day! Notably, just 5% (812) of the total websites targeted were government websites. The number of cyberattacks in 2021 was the most in the previous four years with 28,897, including attacks on 186 government websites.
SBI (2019), Covid-19 test results (2021), Air India (2021), and Domino’s (2021) were some of the significant cyberattack, hacking, and data breach instances in the recent past.
A CERT-In analysis revealed that machines used in the assaults had Internet Protocol (IP) addresses from China, Pakistan, Russia, France, Taiwan, Algeria, Tunisia, and other countries.
The key agency for handling cyber security concerns is CERT-In (Indian Computer Emergency Response Team), which functions under the ministry of electronics and information technology.
To improve cyber security and stop attacks, the Indian government has taken several actions. All government departments are required to adopt CERT-“Cyber Crisis Management Plan,” which it has developed. CERT-In regularly provides alerts and advisories regarding the most recent cyber threats. Before and after hosting, all government websites and applications are audited. Stakeholders are also given training, and simulated drills are held to deal with these problems.