Govt and financial portals face 40% of all cyber attacks

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Government websites and those by financial institutions, including banks, face around 40 per cent of all cyber attacks and data breaches taking place in the country, government sources revealed. “During a discussion on cyber security, we were informed that such attacks have become more pointed and deadly and around 40 per cent of them are targeted towards government and financial sites. Most of these intrusions are phishing attacks or ransomware or denial of service attacks,” a top official from a state, who participated in the state IT ministers conclave on February 13, said.

Most of the breaches target Google accounts (Gmail), as a lion’s share of the around 500 million internet users use smartphones to access their accounts, the official said, adding that it is difficult to trace each and every user on Gmail, but the government is working on checking this.

Confirming the development, another senior government official said during the session on cyber security, the Centre requested states to adopt more stringent measures to address data breaches, especially of sensitive and critical installations like nuclear and power plants, financial hubs, etc.

“The Centre has also offered states to help them conduct cyber security audit of sensitive centres and installations. Besides, they have been urged to set up cyber security centres and continuously monitor internet traffic to track suspicious activity,” the official added.

Pointing out the scale and intensity of data breaches, another state government official said, “During the presentation on cyber security, we were told that till last week, of the 2.3 billion e-transactions in the country since January 1, 2018, around 0.15 billion faced attacks from cyber criminals. Both the Centre and states expressed concern on this rising trend and officials were instructed to deal with this effectively.”