• Evolving mechanism to avert cyber attacks on power infra: Piyush Goyal

    To safeguard country’s power plants from any possible cyber attack, government is trying to evolve a mechanism and has entrusted the task to a retired IPS officer to come out with a framework, Union Minister Piyush Goyal said today.

    “I have just engaged an IPS officer who just retired to help us create an architecture against cyber attacks on the power infrastructure,” Power, Coal and Mines Minister Goyal said at Infocom 2016 here.

    Terming cyber attacks as “clearly a very serious issue”, the Minister acknowledged that “we don’t have as robust a technological framework or a backbone to protect against the kind of hackers we have today.”

    Goyal said that unfortunately the hackers these days are a step ahead and even the most developed nations faced the problems in this regard.

    “Today, the situation is that even the most developed Western countries are finding a lot of problems. They have gone to hack I am told even the records of the Pentagon …So clearly at the end of it we all have to worry about that and I am particularly concerned about it …We are looking at what can be done,” he said.

    He added that if there is a hacker then somebody is there who can detect the hacker.

    The Minister stressed that these kinds of technological challenges will keep coming on and ways have to be evolved to tackle them.

    Terming technology as a tool to progress, the Minister said from 20 to 30 years from now things would completely change lives with digital disruption impacting lives in a big way and cited example of companies like Uber and Airbnb who progressed without owning assets.

    He said even his ministries have plans to cut travel costs by 50 per cent by holding meetings through video conferencing.

    “In my own Ministries, we have a target to cut travel bills by 50 per cent. Video conferencing is more efficient,” the Minister said.

    He said Internet of things (IOT) promises digital realm and said a focused approach was needed towards encouraging the IOT.

    “We are using cloud technology more and more now. Earlier the fear used to be that if you are putting the data into cloud, there will be compromise on security. People are realising that putting in cloud does not compromise, one can have fireballs…As a nation one should look at more focused Internet usage to able to leverage IOT to impact the various programmes of the government of India,” he said.

    He added that technology was used in a big way to prevent collapse of grids and cited example of Hudhud cyclone in Visakhapatnam in 2012 when its progress on ocean was monitored until it came close enough and entire grid was shut down in phases as it progressed.

    The Minister added that within three to four days the grid had resumed operations without any catastrophic losses of life due to technology. Demar Dotson Jersey

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