The All India Security Summit 2013 was organized in December 2013 by the Data Security Council of India, mainly towards addressing cyber security concerns in the corporate world. Resultantly, the focus of the Summit was chiefly on the corporate side, covering topics such as challenges in cloud computing and data-security.
However, Hon’ble Minister of Communications, IT and Law & Justice Kapil Sibal, in his inaugural address said that users must be wary of freedom on the internet as no one can predict who will attack from where. He said that if freedom on the internet is not exercised responsibly, it will become its own enemy and this cannot be allowed. He therefore urged citizens to set aside privacy concerns and abandon the fight for online anonymity. Additionally, a fellow delegate at the Summit revealed that intelligence agencies routinely employ private companies to illegally infiltrate target computers and retrieve personal communications in order to ‘track down terrorists’.
This coupled with the views expressed by the Minister in his address is demonstrative of the Government’s desire to be able to control or at least actively regulate online content, and this runs counter to the fundamental principles on which the internet is built. Online privacy is far from a trifling issue and the Government, above all, should refrain from treating it as such.