Cyberwarfare / Nation-State Attacks , Fraud Management & Cybercrime , Geo Focus: Asia

New Military Doctrine in India Centralizes Cyber Operations

Plan Calls for Removing Operations Silos Across Nation's 3 Armed Forces
New Military Doctrine in India Centralizes Cyber Operations
Image: Shutterstock

The Indian Ministry of Defense announced a Joint Doctrine for Cyberspace Operations to enable the three military services to respond together to hostile actions in cyberspace. The plan for better coordination follows rising incidents of cyberespionage and ransomware attacks against defense groups.

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Chief of Defense Staff Gen. Arun Chauhan said Tuesday in a news release that the new doctrine will guide army, navy and air force commanders, staff and practitioners in planning and conducting cyber operations and raise awareness about cybersecurity threats through rank-and-file armed forces personnel.

The new doctrine is aimed at enhancing inter-services collaboration for the 1.5 million armed forces personnel and removing silos to create more effective operations. Efforts began in 2021 when the defense ministry established the Defense Cyber Agency, which brings together IT and cybersecurity resources from the three services to secure military information and communication technologies and deter foreign adversaries from engaging in cyberwarfare.

According to a Ministry of Defense statement, the Defense Cyber Agency uses centralized threat databases, libraries and incident records to respond to cyberthreats, increases synergy between cyber groups and national cyber agencies and uses hardened technology, information security best practices and effective monitoring to enhance threat detection and response.

The ministry and the services have announced several initiatives in recent years to enhance the armed forces' ability to improve cyber defense and respond to targeted cyberattacks.

To secure assets from advanced persistent threats, the ministry in August announced plans to replace the Microsoft Windows operating system in military computers with a locally built operating system based on Ubuntu OS. The agency also chose Chakravyuh, which is locally developed endpoint detection and protection software built to defend against malware attacks (see: Indian Defense Ministry to Replace Windows With Local OS).

The army last year operationalized a special unit called Command Cyber Operations and Support Wings to safeguard military networks and respond to cyberattacks by adversaries.

About the Author

Jayant Chakravarti

Jayant Chakravarti

Senior Editor, APAC

Chakravarti covers cybersecurity developments in the Asia-Pacific region. He has been writing about technology since 2014, including for Ziff Davis.

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