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Data Security Council of India (DSCI), a not-for-profit organization focused on data security, cyber security and privacy protection, in partnership with Google India, today announced the launch of ‘Internet Safety Program’. The Workshops aim at enhancing trust in the cyberspace by empowering MSMEs with knowledge and understanding to deal with cyber security challenges to stay safe and secure while operating online. Under the program, DSCI and Google will organise a series of workshops in various cities, to help inculcate safe and responsible behaviour in cyberspace by sharing best practices and guidance with the audience, equipping them with necessary guidance, instructions and techniques to address cybersecurity challenges, and spreading awareness on legal and regulatory obligations. The program was inaugurated by Shri Amitabh Kant, CEO, Niti Aayog and Former Secretary, Department of Industrial Policy and Promotion, Ministry of Commerce and Industry, Government of India.

On the occasion of the launch, Vinayak Godse, Senior Director, Data Security Council of India, said, “India stands at a digital transformation stage where technology is making millions of businesses increase efficiency and productivity, get access to computing facilities and information they never had, but which could also create new vulnerabilities and expose them to new threats. There has been an accelerating increase in the adoption of IT in the MSME segment. It is currently estimated at as little as five percent. However, a massive segment is in the process of going online – either benefitting from the e-Commerce wave, cloud services adoption, machine automation, and social commerce or by simply having an online presence of their business. Internet safety becomes imperative in all these situations and many more in the future. DSCI is pleased to launch this program to promote awareness and dialogue in the segment, for exchange of ideas and experience-sharing. Our partnership with Google will enable us to draw upon on each other’s strengths to enhance trust in the cyberspace, which is the common goal.”


Chetan Krishnaswamy, Country Head- Public Policy at Google, said, “Small and Medium Businesses play a critical role in the economic development of the country. Google is committed to bringing 20 mn Indian SMBs online by 2017. Our Internet Safety Campaign is an effort to raise awareness about responsible and safe internet practices amongst SMBs. This will help ensure SMBs as well their customers navigate the web safely and securely – many of whom would be coming online for the first time.”

There are 51 million SMEs in India. However, only 5 to 6 % of them are online. The country is witnessing a serious attempt to bring them online. It has been estimated that by 2017, 20 million of them would be connected. Apart from online presence, these companies will be spending on IT products that include mobility, social media and cloud in order to increase their customer reach, manage customer relationships better, and ensure efficiency in operations. This drive towards digitization, may not be immune to cyber security threats.  Given the increasing number of cyber security issues such as phishing, identity theft, online frauds, hacking, spamming and credit card frauds, among others, and Prime Minister Shri Narendra Modi highlighting the strategic importance of cyber security at the launch of the ‘Digital India’ initiative, it is important that the MSMEs sector, which plays an important role in contributing to the country’s overall production, employment and GDP, is well-equipped with the know-how of Internet safety.

Given that trust in the cyberspace is a critical factor for growth, reach and use of Internet, it is important for businesses, entrepreneurs, and other stakeholders in the national economy, to be aware of Internet safety issues. Participation in the campaign is paramount for all small and medium enterprise, owners and individuals who are responsible for keeping their business safe and secure online.

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