Offensive and defensive cyber capabilities were as important as nuclear expertise for the nation and institutions like IITs need to enhance their research in cyber security with active industry role, former President, Dr A P J Abdul Kalam said on Friday.
Addressing a two-day ‘Security and Hacking Conference Cocon-2014′ being organised by Kerala police here, he also stressed on the need for technology upgradation and investment education in Cyber security for counter cyber security threat.
“India’s IITs, IISc, and unique universities should significantly enhance their research on cyber security with an active participation from the industry,” he said.
“We will soon have only two types of nations — with cyber offensive and defensive capabilities and those without. Cyber capabilities would soon assume the proportion of Comprehensive Test Ban and would become points of negotiations between nations,” he said.
“There is a need to call in professionals – scientists, computer software and hardware experts – to impart latest skills in computer hacking, cyber warfare, etc. Like, hacking is institutionalised in China wherein virus writing is taught in Chinese military schools’.
To build a cadre of elite security technologists, the country needed to promote hardcore computer science education in technical institutes of high caliber, Kalam said.
With the Snowden exposures about US snooping many countries, including India, there was need to have a more aggressive approach to cyber security, he said.
“Our missions abroad and our officials on tour outside must be given a safe and secure information access not only when using wired networks but also while using wireless.”
The country should also master the Social Media Analytics, he said.
Use of social media has been increasing exponentially and it was believed that in India alone there would be 283 million users by 2017, majority of them from the younger generation, Kalam said.
Social media world over has been used for good and bad purposes, and by covert and overt social groups. Social media has become the most effective tool in peace disruptions and it has or suspected to have played a key role in events such as the Blackberry riots in London in 2011, the Delhi Rape protest, 2012, Muzzafarnagar riots, 2013, he noted.
The future of cyber security and in fact the national security would be centered around social media, he said.
Speaking at the conference, Kerala Home Minister Ramesh Chennithala said ‘Cyber Dome’ project had received the cabinet clearance and it would be operated on a PPP basis.