Citizens' Issues
India among most vulnerable nations to cyber attacks
Washington : When it comes to vulnerability to cyber attacks, India along with China, Russia, Saudi Arabia and South Korea is most vulnerable, says research led by an Indian-American scientist.
 
While the US is ranked 11th safest of 44 nations studied, several Scandinavian countries like Denmark, Norway and Finland were ranked the safest in the book authored by V.S. Subrahmanian, professor of computer science at the University of Maryland. 
 
"Our goal was to characterise how vulnerable different countries were, identify their current cyber security policies and determine how those policies might need to change in response to this new information," said Subrahmanian, with the University of Maryland Institute for Advanced Computer Studies (UMIACS).
 
Damaging cyber attacks on a global scale continue to surface every day. Some nations are better prepared than others to deal with online threats from criminals, terrorists and rogue nations.
 
Subrahmanian discussed the findings at a panel discussion hosted by the Foundation for Defense of Democracies in Washington on Wednesday.
 
The authors conducted a two-year study that analysed more than 20 billion automatically generated reports, collected from four million machines per year worldwide. 
 
The researchers based their rankings, in part, on the number of machines attacked in a given country and the number of times each machine was attacked.
 
Machines using Symantec anti-virus software automatically generated these reports, but only when a machine's user opted in to provide the data.
 
Trojans, followed by viruses and worms, posed the principal threats to machines in the US. 
 
However, misleading software (fake anti-virus programmes and disk cleanup utilities) was far more prevalent in the US compared with other nations that have a similar gross domestic product, the authors noted. 
 
The results suggest that US efforts to reduce cyber threats should focus on education to recognise and avoid misleading software.
 
“People - even experts - often have gross misconceptions about the relative vulnerability (to cyber attack) of certain countries. The authors of this book succeed in empirically refuting many of those wrong beliefs,” said Isaac Ben-Israel, chair of the Israeli Space Agency and former head of that nation's National Cyber Bureau, in a foreword to the book. 
 
The co-authors on the book are Michael Ovelgonne, a former UMIACS postdoctoral researcher; Tudor Dumitras, assistant professor of electrical and computer engineering in the Maryland Cybersecurity Centre; and B. Aditya Prakash, assistant professor of computer science at Virginia Tech.
 
A related research paper was presented at the 9th ACM International Conference of Web Search and Data Mining in February this year.
 
Disclaimer: Information, facts or opinions expressed in this news article are presented as sourced from IANS and do not reflect views of Moneylife and hence Moneylife is not responsible or liable for the same. As a source and news provider, IANS is responsible for accuracy, completeness, suitability and validity of any information in this article.

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India unveils new pricing norms for difficult gas discoveries
New Delhi : Hydrocarbons discovered and produced from difficult areas will now get a new pricing norm to encourage production and unlock Rs.180,000 crore worth of reserves that are stuck due to want of incentives, Petroleum Minister Dharmendra Pradhan said on Thursday.
 
Briefing reporters on the decisions taken at a meeting of the cabinet, presided over by Prime Minister Narendra Modi, the oil minister said also approved on Thursday was a new oil and gas exploration policy with a revenue-sharing model, as opposed to cost-and-output-based norm.
 
The difficult areas are defined as those from deep-water, ultra deep-water and high pressure-high temperature areas.
 
Disclaimer: Information, facts or opinions expressed in this news article are presented as sourced from IANS and do not reflect views of Moneylife and hence Moneylife is not responsible or liable for the same. As a source and news provider, IANS is responsible for accuracy, completeness, suitability and validity of any information in this article.

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Government will act against Mallya: Jaitley
New Delhi : The government on Thursday said "every possible action will be taken" against beleaguered liquor baron Vijay Mallya.
 
Finance Minister Arun Jaitley said in the Lok Sabha during Zero Hour that Mallya, as of end of November 2015, owes about Rs.90 billion to the banks. 
 
He was responding to the issue raised by Congress floor leader Mallikarjun Kharge, who wanted to know why the government did not "confiscate" the passport of the defunct Kingfisher Airlines chief.
 
The Congress leader wanted to know why the government and State Bank of India did not act against Mallya on time, which helped the business tycoon to flee. 
 
Jaitley said every member of the house shares the concern raised by Kharge, but said the sanction of money made to Mallya was during the UPA regime.
 
"As far as accounts are concerned, first sanction was made by the consortium of banks in September 2004," he said, adding then again in 2008. "These dates speak for themselves," he said.
 
Minister of State for Parliamentary Affairs Rajiv Pratap Rudy said Mallya is "no saint" for the NDA regime.
 
Disclaimer: Information, facts or opinions expressed in this news article are presented as sourced from IANS and do not reflect views of Moneylife and hence Moneylife is not responsible or liable for the same. As a source and news provider, IANS is responsible for accuracy, completeness, suitability and validity of any information in this article.

 

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