Internet Protocol (IP), which was originally intended for academic pursuits, has spread to every walk of life, including the financial space, where the consequences of its misuse are dangerous. More baffling is the adverse fallout of IP and the secretive technologies stemming out of it on global security.
Unless the technology providers, law-enforcement agencies, and all other stakeholders put their heads together, the menace of usage of IP for committing financial frauds and crimes against humanity cannot be curbed, said A.S. Ramasastri, Director of Institute for Development and Research in Banking Technology, in his keynote address at a national workshop for police officers on ‘Handling VoIP (Voice over Internet Protocol) - based cyber crimes’, jointly organised by Truth Labs and its partner Microsoft here on Thursday.
On the occasion, Mr. Ramasastri said development of digital forensics was the need of the hour as the cyberspace had no borders that could not be breached.
The sheer magnitude of online shopping and funds transfer happening around the world offered tremendous scope for fraudsters to loot others’ money.
Intrusive software could wreck havoc in various other forms. Not only could individuals be cheated but also governments held to ransom with such technologies, he observed.
“If huge sums from the Bangladesh Central Bank’s account with a Federal Reserve Bank (of the U.S.) can be illegally transferred out by hacking the network of SWIFT (Society for Worldwide Inter-bank Financial Telecommunication), tell me what cannot be done by stealing intellectual properties through latest ICT (Information and Communication Technologies?” Mr. Ramasastri wondered.
Mr. Ramasastri asserted that most of those breaking into targeted networks were young, tech-savvy, and highly-motivated.
“Only a combination of a workforce that is richly trained in data, image and video analytics, and coordinated efforts can bust such forces inimical to the global cyberspace,” he added.
N.R. Wasan, former Director-General of Bureau of Police Research and Development, said anonymous networks operating through open source platforms like TOR (The Onion Router) were posing a major challenge to law-enforcers at a time when ‘sovereignty (of nations) is in thin air’.
Truth Labs founder Gandhi P.C. Kaza said 82 per cent of the people in India were using pirated and counterfeit software and particularly shocking was the fact that the users included governments, Defence establishment, and even the North and South Blocks.
It was a major threat to be dealt with collectively, he asserted.