Crafting nationwide protection strategy for cyber security: Check Point

Bhaskar Bhakthavatsalu, MD, India and SAARC Check Point Software Technologies

“We consider government, defense, army and air force under one vertical and have positioned a nationwide protection strategy for this segment,” says Bhaskar Bhakthavatsalu, MD, India and SAARC Check Point Software Technologies. The Israeli multi-national cyber security company has a major focus on critical infrastructure and is devising strategies for providing a nationwide protection. The company provides security solutions in the areas of mobility, cloud, data centre, anti-APT’s, etc.

By Ankush Kumar

How do you think technology has evolved over the years ? Tell us about the company’s key business segment ?

My association with Check Point is close to 14 years and I have seen a drastic change in the adaptation of technology in the last one decade. IoT has become the most talked about technology trend across the world. IoT is comprised of a diverse range of device types – from simple consumer gadgets to cars to sophisticated industrial systems. The Internet of Things trend will continue to grow, and it will be important for consumers and business to think about how to protect their smart devices and prepare for the wider adoption of IoT.

We consider government, defense, army and air force as one vertical and we have positioned a nationwide protection strategy for this vertical. We see defense as a major business segment for us and have invested almost 67 billion US dollars as our budget. We are probably in the list of world’s top three companies in terms of having such a huge defense budget.

Our plan from the nationwide strategy is to focus on the critical infrastructure and provide nationwide protection. From the vertical side, we will be focusing on BFSI, IT and ITeS, manufacturing and telecom. Mobility, cloud, data centre solutions and anti APT would be our focus from the solutions perspective.

How crucial is cyber security for a country’s government ? What kind of security protection framework is required at national level?

Government institutions, both large and small, have struggled for years to keep pace with malicious hackers and insider threats. Cybercrime is becoming innovative and ruthless, and therefore government agencies and federal institutions need to look beyond traditional methods to prevent cyber espionage and ensure the protection of sensitive data and critical infrastructure. It’s good to have an internal security like we have key/ lock/ security for our own house, but this is totally different from having an external security measure for the colony/apartment/society. Which means having an external perimeter or city having more control points to check or mitigate if there is any risk. Like banks, ITeS, enterprises have their own security; the country needs to have its own security solutions.

Today the government agencies have started thinking about having an external security in place and in times to come serious implementations will also happen. The idea of national wide protection is very crucial and critical and not many people are focusing on that, to which we already have solutions.

How are you seeing various state governments interest in cyber security ?

We have also proposed two statewide protection models and once we will get the approvals, we will be able to share the details. For instance a state needs to have an outer layer where all the models in the cyber portal be it CBI, CID or police stations or state data centres should be able to inform about the breaches on real-time so that maximum help can be provided across the state.

Today central government is advising lots of things in terms of cyber security and also allocating budgets for the state government. It is quite interesting to see that the state governments are listening and are taking cyber security seriously by allocating budgets; at least they are starting from the cybercrime. I think in India it’s the police department, which is having a huge focus on cyber security issues.

Tell us about your mobile security solutions for enterprises ?

Our enterprise mobile security solutions provide the widest range of products to help customers secure their mobile world. There are solutions which we call mobile threat prevention, its called sandblast security. It is the industry’s only unified, cross-platform solution to protect enterprises from mobile breaches. SandBlast mobile detects and blocks attacks before they become widespread. It is used for mobile threat prevention and cloud security. Check Point has always been one step ahead in every situation. It’s not about detecting incidents; it’s all about preventing incidents. We provide mobile security, app security, OS, man in the middle attacks, etc. With one sms, or one whatsapp message you can be compromised. We are working very closely with lots of enterprises as well as government. The hacking products are also available today as a service or even in google you can download and pay for the same. It can track what people are doing, where they are going, what message they are exchanging, what calls they make, etc, even without their knowledge.

What is the USP of your products and solutions ? How are you different from other security solution providers?

We try to be one step ahead by focusing on prevention rather than detection. Most security technology companies today are one step behind as they are still talking about detection instead of prevention, which means a patch work of point solutions or complex solution with uncertain security coverage. The traditional approach is to have an antivirus, look at malicious websites or antibot etc. What we mean by a one step ahead is we are one step ahead of threats. That’s the future of security, which means security being managed by lesser people, less capital investment and smaller footprint. We secure both known and unknown threats. Around 70 percent of the malware on google sites in its report is restored by Check Point. Our technology detects issues and also it is signature based. It’s like when you are infected you get an antibiotic for it. We believe you should not be infected at all.

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