India joins cyber security mission

By Balamurugan Selvaraj Published on Dec 06, 2017 10:11 AM IST

Cyber security in India has been in a muddle for a decade. Recently, the Ministry of Electronics and Technology launched a programme called, "Cyber Swachhta Kendra," to curb cyber crimes.

Nobody can forget the problems caused by Wannacry and its post version 2.0. Some months back,  this ransomware infected millions of personal computers across the world using the SMB v1 fl aw. It has infected computers run by police departments and temple endowment boards in south India.

However, systems that ran Linux were safe. This does not mean that Linux platform is completely safe. Though it has fl aws, the levels of severity are   much lower than other operating systems.

The timely action of NMR (No More Ransomware) project, launched by Europol in association with National Cyber Crime Unit of Netherlands’ police and a few cyber security agencies, including Kaspersky and McAfee, was fruitful.

The programme was launched in the form of a website to fight against ransomware attacks worldwide. News Today analysed the two programmes (Cyber Swachhta Kendra and NMR ) and found a few things interesting.

Though the project NMR offers free cyber security worldwide, the operations in India are less. When the programmes were initially launched, supporters were minimal, including sponsors. But now, the sites run with the support of most countries’ law enforcement agen- cies and cyber security units, apart from India.

Interestingly, NMR has become multilingual, which includes Tamil. However, it does not have the support of Hindi. Cyber Swachhta Kendra website runs without a proper SSL certifi cate and international cyber agencies’ support. It runs with the support of Indian antivirus security agency, Quick Heal.

On the other hand, NMR project has a unique tool named, ‘Crypto Sheriff’ to detect ransomware variant, without having any physical contact with the infected system. This tool detects the malware and directs the user with a solution. If the detected sample is a new variant, the website will post the sample data to its supporting agencies, requesting a solution.

Also, the project educates users about working of ransomware and suggests some countermeasures to prevent infection.As per the data, “The initiative isopen to other public and private parties. Interested ones can join to root out cyber crimes.”