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Future wars might be cyber wars, says Parrikar

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New Delhi: Stressing on the need for enhanced cyber security, Defence Minister Manohar Parrikar said on Monday that the Indian Army must be vigilant against information manipulations by militant outfits like ISIS.

Apprehending that cyberspace will be the next war zone, Parrikar underscored the need for acquiring enhanced competencies to thwart attacks from terrorist outfits.

Parrikar mentioned that ISIS was using the social media platforms extensively to spread their ideology, and said, a counter-strategy must be formulated to curb the virulent attack.

“The world that we as a nation will be interacting with is increasingly fraught with turbulence and will call for dominant military might. We need to develop technology and system appropriate to evolving military doctrine,” Parrikar said addressing the DEFCOM seminar here organised by the Corps of Signal of the Indian Army and the CII.

He, however, stated that conventional defence forces could never be substituted and the process of honing them will continue to combat growing threats.

Speaking about the need for proper use of the developing internet technology, Parrikar said, “One can take the example of terrorist organisations like Daish or ISIS. They use the Internet to ensure a lot of recruitment or support, and they are one of the best users of Internet technology for promoting their cause.”

Warning of a possible information blackout triggered by ultra-bodies, Parrikar said, developing internet technology has become of utmost important in the backdrop of rapid global development in the cyberspace.

Handling of information via internet could be both sensitive and tricky, as there was always the threat of data overload, said Parrikar, adding, finding vital information might become like searching a needle in a stack of hay.

Digitalisation of the forces would equip them to foil cyber-attacks by the adversaries, Parrikar added.

The defence minister expressed firm belief that India will become a dominant force in the cyber world in recent times.

(With inputs from agencies)

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Heavy Cyber Attacks From Russia, US, China In India

These honeypots are developed to deceive even elite hackers and appear to be serving a specific purpose or organisation.

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A man holds a laptop computer as cyber code is projected on him in this illustration picture. VOA

India has been the target of over 4.3 lakh cyber attacks from five countries including China, Russia and the US while more than 73,000 attacks were initiated from India between January and June this year, says a Finnish cybersecurity company.

According to F-Secure’s honeypot data, Russia, the US, China, the Netherlands and Germany targeted India with 436,090 attacks. This is nearly 12 times more than which originated from India.

Honeypots are basically decoy servers that emulate the real IT environment of a business enterprise.

cyber attacks
Due to its nature, the chip is physically unclonable and can, thus, render the device invulnerable to hijacking, counterfeiting or replication by cyber-criminals. Pixabay

Russia accounted for most cyber attacks on India (255,589), followed by the US (103,458), China (42,544), the Netherlands (19,169) and 15,330 attacks from Germany.

On the other hand, the top five countries that were targeted by Indian cyber attackers were Austria, the Netherlands, the UK, Japan, and Ukraine — a total of 36,563.

F-Secure gave the break-up: Austria (12,540), the Netherlands (9,267), the UK (6,347), Japan (4,701) and 3,708 attacks targeted Ukraine’s businesses.

“The relatively higher number of inbound attacks on Indian honeypots reflects how the fast-digitising country is becoming more lucrative for global cyber criminals,” Leszek Tasiemski, Vice President of cyber security products R&D at F-Secure, said in a statement on Sunday.

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Experts: Cyber attacks Growing Increasingly Sophisticated. Pixabay

“We are gathering and analysing all the pertinent data to ensure that our customers stay protected given the dynamically evolving threat landscape,” he added.

To track these cyber attacks, F-Secure has deployed 41 honeypots across the globe.

“Our public honeypots are a valuable source of threat intelligence and an integral part of the infrastructure that powers our various security offerings, including our Rapid Detection and Response Service,” Tasiemski said.

Honeypots are set up explicitly to grab attention of attackers. They are used to gain critical insights on attack types, popular targets, sources, volume and TTPs (Tactics, Techniques and Procedures).

Such insights are collected by deliberately allowing potential attackers to gain unauthorized access to the emulated services of a server and then studying the attack path to the point that the attacker realizes it is a honeypot, F-secure said.

Also Read: U.S. Government Warns People Against China-Linked Hacking Group

These honeypots are developed to deceive even elite hackers and appear to be serving a specific purpose or organisation.

They enable F-Secure to collect the latest malware samples or shell scripts and new hacking techniques.

The research data is then processed to further benefit F-Secure customers via product enhancements and threat intelligence reports. (IANS)