The Indian government is setting up a center under the 'Digital India' program that will be able to detect malicious programs and botnets and help device owners to remove harmful software for free.
IT Secretary R S Sharma stated that the project is a part of Digital India initiative that aims to create safe and secure cyber space. Botnet are a network of malicious software that can steal information, remotely gain control of devices and carry out cyber attacks like Distributed Denial-of-Service (DDoS) that prevent access of websites. The center is being set up with an expense of about Rs 100 crore and national cyber security watchdog Indian Computer Emergency Response Team (CERT) has selected vendor for the same. Government has also announced a new email policy under the Digital India initiative bans government officials from using email services of private companies like Gmail, Hotmail, Yahoo, etc for official communications. Under the new policy 5 million government officials will use secure NIC servers for any official communication. This policy idea was implemented by the Department of Electronics and IT after the Edward Snowden revelations of NSA spying on various countries, including India with the help of external software and Internet companies. Recently a new report had revealed that Chinese hackers have been targeting SE Asia and India for almost a decade to steal sensitive political and military information.
IT Secretary R S Sharma said, "We are setting up 'botnet' cleaning and malware analysis centre within three months. It will automatically detect botnets that trigger various cyber crimes and suggest the device owner to remove it from their device with help of our facility." Explaining operational details of the centre, ICERT Director General B J Srinath said, "We will take help of internet service providers (ISP) to execute it. The owner of infected device will get message from ISP about the infection. The person can remove it by downloading a solution from CERT website. It will not cost anything to them. We have also notified e-mail policy and working on details of its implementation. This policy is aimed at making official communication safe," he said.