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Government forms Expert Committee under NCSC Rajesh Pant to probe reports of snooping by Chinese firm

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Expert-committee-headed-by-National-Cyber-Security-Coordinator-Lt-Gen-Rajesh-PantOn September 16, 2020 Government of India formed an Expert Committee led by National Cyber Security Coordinator (NCSC) Lt General (retd)Rajesh Pant, India’s Chief Coordinator on Cyber Security to examine the reports of digital surveillance on Prominent Indian Nationals including President, Army Chief by Chinese firm Shenzhen Zhenhua Data Information Technology Company Ltd.

The Expert Committee will submit its recommendations in 30 days.

Key Points:

i.The expert committee will study the reports, evaluate their implications, assess violations of law and submit its recommendations.

ii.The chinese firm, suspected to have links with the Chinese Communist Party and Chinese Government, was tracking over 10, 000 Indians in its global database of foreign targets. The extracts were found in the Overseas Key Information Database (OKIDB).

iii.The list included President, Vice President, Prime Minister, Army chief and key opposition leaders, men and women from various disciplines, politics, legislature, science, judiciary and media.

iv.The company has data from the United States, United Kingdom, Germany and United Arab Emirates.

v.The Indian External Affairs Ministry has raised the issue with the Chinese Ambassador to India Sun Weidong.

The Investigation:

The digital surveillance was revealed in an investigation conducted by Indian Express.

Recent Related News:

i.On January 13, 2020 Union Home Minister (HM) Amit Shah digitally launched India’s 1st cyber AASHVAST (Assured Assistance Service Helpline for Victims at Shortest Time) & project VISHWAS (Video Integration and Statewide Advanced Security).

ii.On January 10, 2020 National Cyber Crime Reporting Portal was dedicated to the Nation by Union Home Minister Amit Shah in New Delhi and he also inaugurated Indian Cyber Crime Coordination Centre (I4C).

About National Security Council (NSC):

Head – Prime Minister Narendra Modi
Secretary – Ajit Doval, National Security Advisor