India’s National Security Council Secretariat (NSCS) has launched the second Edition of the National Cyber Security Exercise ‘Bharat NCX 2023’, in a bid to strengthen India’s cybersecurity infrastructure and readiness.
The inauguration took place on Tuesday, 10th October, and saw dignitaries, including, Principal Scientific Advisor to the Government of India, Ajay Kumar Sood, Deputy National Security Advisor, Rajinder Khanna, and National Cyber Security Coordinator, Lt Gen MU Nair, attending.
A press release by the NSCS said the primary aim of the exercise is to equip participants with the knowledge and skills necessary to address contemporary cyber threats, effectively manage cyber incidents, and formulate robust response strategies. Conducted in collaboration with Rashtriya Raksha University (RRU), Bharat NCX 2023 represents a strategic partnership aimed at fortifying India’s cybersecurity landscape.
Bharat NCX 2023 will be held as a hybrid exercise from 9th to 20th October, and seeks to provide comprehensive training to senior management and technical personnel from government and critical sector organizations, as well as public and private agencies. It will serve as a unifying platform for over 300 participants, representing a diverse cross-section of government agencies, public organizations, and the private sector.
These stakeholders believe in safeguarding critical information infrastructure. The event covers various training sessions, live fire exercises, and strategic exercises, offering participants insights into key cybersecurity areas such as Intrusion Detection Techniques, Malware Information Sharing Platform (MISP), Vulnerability Handling and Penetration Testing, Network Protocols and Data Flows, and Digital Forensics, among others.
Principal Scientific Advisor to the Government of India, Dr Ajay Kumar Sood, delivered a keynote address, emphasizing the imperative of upskilling the cyber workforce.
He noted the significance of continuous learning and expertise cultivation as the bedrock for reinforcing India’s cybersecurity defenses. Dr. Sood also highlighted the importance of protecting Digital Public Infrastructure (DPI), addressing hardware security requirements, and delving into Post Quantum Cryptography in the context of becoming “Quantum Safe”.
Lt. Gen. M U Nair, National Cyber Security Coordinator, offered strategic insights into India’s evolving cyber domain, shedding light on the ever-evolving landscape of cyber threats. His address stressed the collective vigilance required to safeguard the nation’s digital assets.
Director of Rashtriya Raksha University, Colonel Nidhish Bhatnagar, praised the Indian Government’s firm commitment to strengthening the country’s cybersecurity. He lauded initiatives like Bharat NCX 2023, which ensure India’s cyber-safety, particularly in an era characterized by extensive digitalization and an expanded threat surface. These efforts represent a significant step towards workforce development in cybersecurity.
In addition to its training and strategic components, Bharat NCX 2023 will host an exclusive exhibition noting the innovation and resilience of Indian cybersecurity start-ups and Micro, Small, and Medium-sized Enterprises (MSMEs).
This exhibition aims to underscore the critical role played by these dynamic entities in fortifying India’s cybersecurity ecosystem. The event will also host a prestigious conclave, convening over 200 Chief Information Security Officers (CISOs) from government agencies, public organizations, and the private sector.
This gathering of industry leaders will provide a unique platform for in-depth discussions and deliberations on the evolving cyber threat landscape, fostering collaboration and innovation in the cybersecurity domain.