Homegrown Talent? Indian Cybersecurity Looks to Leverage Local Expertise

October 12, 2016 @ 9:32 AM
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2 min read

Cybersecurity is a global issue. While the U.S. faces specific challenges related to its growing, cloud-enabled attack surface and the rise of both skilled amateur cybercriminals and state-sponsored efforts, the impact of data breaches has worldwide consequences.

When it comes to Indian cybersecurity, the country currently boasts a $4 billion market, according to the Business Standard. In less than 10 years, that same market will be worth $35 billion. Still, global investors aren’t exactly flocking to the country with venture capital. To bolster existing defenses and meet future corporate needs, India is looking for homegrown talent to close the cybersecurity gap.

Government Intervention

According to Enterprise Innovation, industry body Nasscom is looking to boost the profile of local security solutions by partnering with the Department of Electronics and Information Technology (DEITY) in addition to the Technology Development Board of the Department of Science and Technology. Nasscom hopes that a forward-thinking focus on cybersecurity, combined with the right platform and sufficient funds, will help drive more domestic innovation and support the government’s new Digital India initiative.

With India already facing a significant skills shortage and businesses often at risk of zero-day and emerging threats thanks to a lack of top-tier security solutions, significant change is required. Adding to the urgency, just 40 percent of cybersecurity countries in India received funding from global investors, according to Nasscom.

With a burgeoning digital industry, India has a massive attack surface, minimal protections and limited security investment. Something’s got to give.

Looking Farther Afield

Along with supporting local businesses through infrastructure and investment opportunities, Indian cybersecurity efforts are also looking farther afield. As noted by the Business Standard, an Indian tech delegation visited global cybersecurity hot spots such as London, The Hague and Israel to identify the best practices and implementation strategies.

In addition, the Data Security Council of India (DSCI), which is part of Nasscom, recently established a chapter in Singapore to facilitate the exchange of actionable security information. It doesn’t stop there: According to The Economic Times, India is on the verge of inking a cybersecurity pact aimed at limiting the impact of radicalization and online propaganda.

The Future of Indian Cybersecurity

Local investment is a great way to bolster the cybersecurity ecosystem and ensure security products meet the needs of existing Indian businesses rather than being shoehorned in to match unique demands. The model works for businesses on a global scale.

As noted by Nanalyze, security startups such as Tanium and CloudFlare, which received hundreds of millions in venture capital funding, have been able to roll out “Google-like” security scanning tools and web security solutions, respectively. There are on the cutting edge of cybersecurity design.

It’s worth noting, however, that investment at home and partnerships abroad won’t be able to instantly solve the cyber skills gap. To address this issue, Indian cybersecurity proponents may need to tap automated and innovative solutions, such as cognitive security tools that leverage the benefits of awareness and machine learning.

Along with a tech community supported both at home and abroad, this could form the foundation of long-term evolution for India’s cybersecurity effort.

Douglas Bonderud
Freelance Writer

A freelance writer for three years, Doug Bonderud is a Western Canadian with expertise in the fields of technology and innovation. In addition to working for...
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