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Cyber watchdogs to get stronger teeth

Source: The Economic Times
By Sofia Tippoo
Date: November 28, 2003

computer crime BANGALORE: US-based Internet Security Alliance (ISA) is in talks with the Society for Electronic Transactions and Security (SETS) to set up a cyber security body to monitor and create awareness of virus incidents taking place across the world.

ISA, a consortium of leading enterprises like AIG, IBM, Ceridian, Sony, Mellon, Nasdaq, Visa, Nortel Networks, Raytheon and Verizon, shares information, develops widely approved best practices and standards, develops tools for assessment and creates market incentives to improve cyber security.
In its latest initiative called ‘Security anchor programme’, it is tying up with SETS, a corporate body in India with representatives from the government and industry.

The new organisation is likely to be based in Chennai and will act as the India security anchor to provide a secure channel for receiving reports about vulnerabilities and virus attacks. It will also provide assistance to its members on how to handle these attacks as well as disseminate incident-related information.
Indian companies are just waking up to the threats that are being posed by hackers and virus attacks. “Virus attacks have doubled from 55,000 in 2001 to 110,000 in 2003.With such a growth rate, it is time to re-look at the practices adopted by enterprises. We are going to partner with SETS in such a way that it could be our Indian anchor for security education and training,” Larry Clinton, chief of operations, ISA, told TNN.

According to him, a government mandate is not the appropriate way to ensure cyber security. “You have to remember the nature of the Internet — it is like a living organism, constantly changing and growing, and if the government has to set any processes, it will take two years and by then the Internet would have changed drastically,” he added.
Clinton notes that putting best practices in place can get you incentives. “ US insurer AIG cuts its rate by 15 per cent if the company adopts best practices,” he said.

According to M. Vidyasagar, executive vice president (advanced technology), TCS, the only way to create more awareness is to get more people involved.

Original article

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