As cyber attacks become increasingly more mainstream, the telecom industry will have a greater role to play in securing networks, abuse handling and notifying users about infected systems, said government officials and experts at a discussion here on Friday.
At a session organised by the Data Security Council of India on the sidelines of 57th annual public meeting of the Internet Association of Assigned Names and Numbers (ICANN), officials from the Computer Emergency Response Team (CERT-In) and other stakeholders discussed the role of telecom networks and service providers in preventing cyber space and attacks on networks.
CERT-In, which is working on the malware analysis and botnet cleaning centre, said that as the agency that reports cyber incidents, it would look for greater cooperation from internet service providers (ISPs).
“We as an agency can identify which IP addresses are infected, because they are shooting out spam or bots. I can tell the ISP that these are the infected addresses. The ISP knows this particular address belongs to who, and they can help notify the users and ask them to clean their device -whether laptops, desktops or mobile devices,“ said a CERT-In official.
An IP address is essentially a unique string of numbers that identifies a device. The official added that knowing an IP address does not in any way give access to user content, and the aim of the CERT is merely to identify a device that is sending malicious data into the network. The proposed botnet centre, which was announced last year, with an outlay of Rs 100 crore, is going to have development arrangements with the antivirus vendors, and if the user chooses to remove the malware, they will be directed to the CERT-In website, which will let the users select which tool they want to clean up their system.
The ISPs however, have a different view on the issue. “The ISPs aren’t providing content, but are simply a highway provider,” said Rajesh Chharia, president of the Internet Service Providers Association of India.