New Delhi, 25 July-2014: Government will not accept breach of any Indian law relating to privacy of people by US agencies under their surveillance programmes and the same has been conveyed to US government, Parliament was informed today.
“Government has expressed concern over reported US monitoring of internet traffic from India.
“The violation of any of Indian law relating to privacy of information or ordinary Indian citizen by such programmes is unacceptable,” Telecom Minister Ravi Shankar Prasad said in written reply to Rajya Sabha.
The Minister was replying to a question on government awareness about snooping by “US agencies through Google or such US based internet channels”
Whistleblower Edward Snowden has said that US government agency National Security Agency monitors all kind of information globally with the help of US based companies such as Google, Facebook, Microsoft and others.
All the companies have denied the allegations. Prasad said that taking note of disclosure by foreign media reports in June 2013 about US agencies’ extensive electronic surveillance programmes to collect internet and telephpny data, India government has expressed concerns over reported US monitoring of internet traffic from India.
“It would be a matter of concern for government if intrusive data capture has been deployed against Indian citizens or government infrastructure. Government has clearly conveyed these concerns to the US government,” Prasad said.
The Minister said that government is enhancing capacity to protect data and information flows by building better cyber and telephony infrastructure.
“Government is promoting Indian players in the IT field to develop and offer internet services by having their servers located in India…Already Refiff and Indiatimes have set up servers and accessories in the country to provide e-mail and other services to Indian citizens,” Prasad said.
In a separate reply to a question on cyber attacks on India, the Minister said that there has been increase in cyber security incidents.
“During the years 2011, 2012, 2013 and 2014 (till May), a total number of 21,699, 27,605, 28,481 and 9,174 Indian websites were hacked by various hacker groups spread worldwide,” he said.
Prasad said that attackers use masquerading techniques to hide identity of actual system and it is difficult to attribute the origin of attacks.
“The majority of these attacks have been observed to be originating from the cyber space of a number of countries including USA, Europe, Brazil, Turkey, China, Pakistan, Bangladesh, Algeria and UAE,” Prasad said.
Apart from incidents of hacking, Indian Computer Emergency Response Team has reported 13301, 22060, 71780 and 62189 security incidents in 2011,2012,2013 and 2014 (till May) respectively.
This included cyber crimes like phishing, scanning, malicious code and denial of service, Prasad added.