Banks, RBI keeping close watch to tackle cyber fraud: Sitharaman

Sitharaman said government regularly examines public sector banks and RBI checks its own systems in order to prevent cyber frauds.

New Delhi: Union Finance Minister Nirmala Sitharaman on Thursday said that while government institutions, banks and insurance companies were building greater awareness over cyber fraud, there was a need for people also to be more alert against cheats who were out to game the system.

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Speaking at the ‘DATE with Tech’ event in the national capital, Sitharaman said the government regularly examines public sector banks and the RBI checks its own systems in order to prevent cyber frauds, in which victims are tricked via phone or SMS, while insurance firms assess their own systems as well.

“India is in a transitional stage, we are at a stage where we are transforming from what was before to what is now, which is completely digital,” Sitharaman added.

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She said there is worry on a small scale about people receiving arbitrary calls that trap them and cause them to lose money.

“Those people who game the system probably are one notch ahead of us in terms of using and misusing technology. On that, there is a lot of work required. It is a never-ending game because technology is such an animal that keeps moving and racing much ahead of you. You have to be sure that you got the reins in your hand,” Sitharaman said.

The Union Minister said big organisations with systemically sensitive information should have sufficient technology and staff that are properly educated to firewall their systems on a daily basis. They also need to continuously assess whether the firewall is still capable of doing its job.

She also highlighted India’s achievement in developing a comprehensive digital infrastructure known as the “India Stack”.

This initiative, funded by public resources, integrates various digital elements, marking a significant leap in the nation’s digitiaation journey which has been appreciated by other countries as well.

Sitharaman said in the recent G20 Digital Public Infrastructure conference people were really surprised that a country like India could not only utilise the talent which is available with public funds and be able to scale it up at the ground level.

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