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Cyber Threats On Rise As India Goes Cashless: Study

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With a shift towards cashless economy, cyber threats in India are at a new high with the number of such incidents occurring in banking systems increasing in the last five years.

The joint study by Assocham and PwC said that an ATM card hack hit the Indian banks in October last year, affecting around 3.2 million debit cards.

“Hence, efforts are needed to enhance cyber security as businesses and citizens embrace this new digital wave,” the study noted.

The study said the attacks on Indian websites have increased nearly five times in the past four years.

However, the country’s budgetary allocation towards cyber security was only about Rs42.2 crore in 2012-13.

The study revealed that demonetisation has given an impetus to e-wallet services and mobile wallets have witnessed a massive rise in app downloads.

“The result has been that leading mobile wallets have witnessed growth upwards of 100 per cent in app download numbers and have similarly seen an increase upwards of 400 per cent increase in wallet recharges,” it said.

“Moreover, cyber-threats will only rise as India is seeing a shift towards a cashless economy. The types of cyber security incidents such as phishing, scanning, website intrusions and defacements, virus code and denial of service attacks will continue to grow,” the study added.

“What we urgently need is serious effort in capacity building and setting up high-end cyber labs that are capable of critically inspecting every IT component before these are deployed in critical infrastructure across industry sectors.”

The study said that by identifying cyber security flaws and issues, the decision-makers will be better placed to implement appropriate security controls, design additional secure architectures, monitor targeted attacks and maintain effective cyber resilience for their IT, OT and CT networks.

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