National Cyber Coordination Centre

The National Cyber Coordination Centre (NCCC) is an operational cybersecurity and e-surveillance agency in India. It is intended to screen communication metadata and co-ordinate the intelligence gathering activities of other agencies. Some have expressed concern that the body could encroach on Indian citizens' privacy and civil-liberties, given the lack of explicit privacy laws in the country.[2]

National Cyber Coordination Centre
Emblem of India.svg
Agency overview
JurisdictionGovernment of India
Agency executive
  • Lt. Gen. Rajesh Pant (Retd.), National Cyber Security Coordinator
Parent departmentMinistry of Electronics and Information Technology (India)[1]

MotivationEdit

India has no dedicated Cyber-security regulation and is also not well prepared to deal with cyberwarfare.[3] However, India has formulated the National Cyber Security Policy 2013 which is not yet implemented.[4] The National Cyber Coordination Centre's purpose would be to help the country deal with malicious cyber-activities by acting as an Internet traffic monitoring entity that can fend off domestic or international attacks.[5][6]

Components of the NCCC include a cybercrime prevention strategy, cybercrime investigation training and review of outdated laws.

BackgroundEdit

The NCCC is an e-surveillance and cybersecurity project of Government of India.[7][8] It has been classified to be a project of Indian government without a legal framework, which may be counterproductive as it may violate civil liberties and human rights.[2]

There were concerns that National Cyber Coordination Centre (NCCC) could possibly be abused for indulging in mass surveillance in India, privacy violation and civil liberty violations as agencies like NTRO[clarification needed] and organisations like the National Security Council Secretariat are exempted from the applicability of any transparency law like Right to Information Act.[2][9] Mass surveillance in India is not new as India already has e-surveillance projects like Central Monitoring System,[10] NATGRID, and DRDO NETRA.

Many, including legal experts,[11][12] in India believe that intelligence agencies and their e-surveillance projects require parliamentary oversight.[13][14][15] Although NCCC is jurisdictionally under the Ministry of Home Affairs, it coordinates with multiple security and surveillance agencies as well as with CERT-In of the Ministry of Electronics and Information Technology.

StatusEdit

The National Cyber Coordination Centre received an in principle approval in May 2013 and would come under the National Information Board.[16] In September 2014, Indian government discussed to establish it.[17] In November 2014 Rs. 1,000 crore has been allotted to improve Indian cybersecurity. From this Rs. 800 crore would be utilised for National Cyber Coordination Centre purposes.[18]

On 9 August, in response to a question, minister of State P.P. Chaudhary mentioned that Phase-1 of the National Cyber Coordination Centre is now operational.[19] Indian and U.S. intelligence agencies are also working together to curb misuse of social media platforms in the virtual world by terror groups.[20][21][22]

FunctionsEdit

Government sources mentioned that the government would also involve Internet service providers (ISPs) to ensure round-the-clock monitoring of the Internet, while expertise of other private sector organisations would be utilised when required. It will be India’s first layer for cyber threat monitoring and all communication with government and private service providers would be through this body only. The NCCC will be in virtual contact with the control room of all ISPs to scan traffic within the country, flowing at the point of entry and exit, including international gateway. Apart from monitoring the Internet, the NCCC would look into various threats posed by cyber attacks. The NCCC would also address the threats faced by the computer networks of government departments and organisations handling sensitive government data and important websites.[23]

National Cyber Security CoordinatorEdit

The first National Cyber Security Coordinator/ Cyber-security chief was Gulshan Rai. He was followed by Lt. Gen. Rajesh Pant (Retd).[24]

Similar projectsEdit

Projects similar in nature:

ReferencesEdit

  1. ^ https://www.meity.gov.in/writereaddata/files/Gazette%20Notification%20-%20Designated%20Officer%2069A%20NCCC%20Dir%20oct2020.pdf[bare URL PDF]
  2. ^ a b c "India's cyber protection body pushes ahead". Hindustan Times. 29 January 2014. Archived from the original on 19 January 2014. Retrieved 6 November 2014.
  3. ^ "India Unprepared For Cyber Warfare". Business Insider. 16 October 2014. Retrieved 7 November 2014.
  4. ^ "National Cyber Security Policy-2013". Department Of Electronics And Information Technology. 1 July 2013. Retrieved 7 November 2014.
  5. ^ "India to Beef Up National Cyber Defense". Softpedia News. 5 November 2014. Retrieved 6 November 2014.
  6. ^ "Govt plans to set up Rs 800 crore cyber intelligence centre". Firstbiz. 15 September 2014. Retrieved 7 November 2014.
  7. ^ a b "India gets ready to roll out cyber snooping agency". The Hindu. 10 June 2013. Retrieved 10 October 2014.
  8. ^ "India Sets Up Domestic PRISM-Like Cyber Surveillance?". The Diplomat. 10 June 2013. Retrieved 10 October 2014.
  9. ^ "Exempted Organisations From Applicability Of Right to Information Act 2005". CIC Online. 26 September 2005. Retrieved 6 November 2014.
  10. ^ "Big Brother is listening". The Telegraph. 21 April 2013. Retrieved 7 November 2014.
  11. ^ "Big Brother Must Not Overstep the Limits". Tehelka. 3 March 2012. Retrieved 7 November 2014.
  12. ^ "The trouble with big brother's eye". Tehelka. 31 August 2012. Retrieved 7 November 2014.
  13. ^ "Time for parliamentary oversight over intelligence agencies". Deccan Herald. 23 June 2012. Retrieved 7 November 2014.
  14. ^ "Take steps to make intelligence agencies accountable to Parliament: Team Anna". Times Of India. 6 June 2012. Retrieved 7 November 2014.
  15. ^ "Spooks Under Scrutiny". India Today. 12 July 2013. Retrieved 7 November 2014.
  16. ^ "Centre to shield India from cyber attacks proposed". Hindustan Times. 16 August 2014. Archived from the original on 19 January 2014. Retrieved 10 October 2014.
  17. ^ "Super cyber intelligence body soon, announces IT Minister". The Hindu. 14 September 2014. Retrieved 10 October 2014.
  18. ^ "Rs 1,000 cr set aside for cyber shield". Business Standard. 5 November 2014. Retrieved 5 November 2014.
  19. ^ "Minister's response in the Lok Sabha to a question on the operationalization of the NCCC" (PDF). Lok Sabha.
  20. ^ "Cyber Crime Prevention Strategy will be Strengthened: Home Minister Shri Rajnath Singh". Press Information Bureau, Government of India, Ministry of Home Affairs. 31 October 2014. Retrieved 6 November 2014.
  21. ^ "Panel proposes axing 73 more obsolete laws". Times Of India. 4 November 2014. Retrieved 6 November 2014.
  22. ^ "Indo-US Intelligence Team to End Virtual Terrorism". Indian Express. 5 November 2014. Retrieved 6 November 2014.
  23. ^ Joshi, Sandeep (10 June 2013). "India gets ready to roll out cyber snooping agency". The Hindu. ISSN 0971-751X. Retrieved 16 June 2021.
  24. ^ Aggarwal, Nikhar (26 March 2019). "Lt Gen Rajesh Pant (retd) takes over charge from India's first cybersecurity chief Gulshan Rai: Sources - ET CIO". Economic Times CIO.com. Retrieved 31 March 2020.
  25. ^ "Big brother is watching you?". Hindustan Times. 22 June 2013. Archived from the original on 9 November 2014. Retrieved 6 November 2014.
  26. ^ "Is India about to gets its own PRISM?". Index On Censorship. 10 July 2013. Retrieved 6 November 2014.
  27. ^ "Defence Ministry's new spy system 'Netra' soon to be launched". Iamwire. 16 December 2013. Retrieved 6 November 2014.