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The Current Cybersecurity Startups Landscape In India

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Bimal Gandhi, CEO, Uniken

A versatile personality, Bimal has experience in finance, strategy technology and operations, development of business on different verticals, revenue generation, reengineering processes, and renegotiation of deals.

How do you think that solution offerings by cybersecurity startups will help other companies keep cyber threat at bay in the time on corona pandemic that has increased the risk of cyber threat like never before?
Due to the corona outbreak, most of the IT enabled organizations have mandated their workforce to work from home. This solution greatly helps to achieve the social distancing, the most powerful weapon against fighting the virus. However, this means the organizations need to be equipped not only with necessary infrastructure, but also with critical information security measures while opening-up connectivity from outside the organization. Uniken’s REL-ID desktop solution helps the organizations to provide secure remote access to their intranet websites and servers to the employees from outside network in an easy, effective and yet lowest risk way.

With so many cybersecurity startups in India trying to come-up with technology that makes remote working safe, it is noteworthy to look at some of those and use them in practice. These solutions not only make your working environment tamperproof from cyber threats, but will also help you with data security in the long run. We regularly hear news about online systems getting compromised or confidential data being stolen, which indicates that current security systems need a lot of improvement. While traditional systems focus on reducing risks, Uniken’s security platform has been designed to eliminate the occurrence of all potential threats. Uniken has handled more than two billion interactions till date and there has not been even a single case of stolen identity, data breach or financial loss.

Which sectors do you think have the major threat of cyber attacks in current situation, in India?
The crisis brought-on by the COVID-19 pandemic is affecting people and businesses in unprecedented ways. As organizations are having to figure-out how to enable employees and contractors to perform their jobs from home, telework means that your people are no longer using company computers on the corporate network to access mission critical and sensitive resources; so a simple human

mistake could result in a big security breach.

With almost all the sectors in India practicing work-from-home, this has put humongous strain on the security teams who are responsible for safeguarding the backend data and files. This risk is all the more higher for organisations that deals in customer sensitive data such as Banks/ NBFCs, healthcare companies, government agencies, and others. Such companies are at the forefront battling these threats.

In this scenario, it is mostly technology only that can curb the risk of such threats. Companies need to adopt cybersecurity technologies that help in keeping-up the workflow as well as mitigate the risks. Any tampering or loss of data might lead to serious repercussions at a time that is already so crucial for businesses to even survive.

Please share some tips on how a company and its employees can avoid such potential risks
There are a lot of cybersecurity startups in the country working on some really unique concepts. Service or product offerings from such cybersecurity companies should be considered by every organisation for whom data security is a challenge. Simultaneously, companies can also adopt various protective measures that can help them slightly in keep these risks at bay. Some of such practices include being watchful of suspicious emails/downloads, not installing new software without technical guidance, not using public wifi or sharing important files over such unsecured network, and others. If the employees are told to follow these tips diligently, the threats can be reduced significantly in the initial stages itself, because these are key targets that cyber criminals forge through.

In the long run, how can companies make their data more secure and tamperproof using AI and technology?
Today, most organizations rely on virtual private networks (VPN) to connect remote employees to their corporate networks and access corporate resources. However, VPNs have a lot of problems that are making them inadequate to meet the challenge the current crisis has created, whether it be the bandwidth strain it is putting on corporate networks, the lack of integrated multifactor authentication, network segmentation, and access controls, or the potential privacy issues it creates.

This is why Gartner predicts that 60 percent of private companies will have phased VPNs out in favor of zero-trust networking and other technologies by 2023. However, deploying zero-trust networking takes time, planning, and resources – all of which are in short supply for businesses scrambling to respond to the current crisis. Organizations need a solution that can be deployed quickly with no disruption to the business, that is designed for both enterprise assets and a BYOD environment, and that addresses the challenges of the new threat landscape. In other words, businesses need an agile yet comprehensive security platform designed for the modern enterprise.

With most of the sectors suffering huge losses during this pandemic, how do you think this is impacting the cybersecurity sector in India?
It is undoubtedly an unpleasant phase for every business currently. While some are reeling under the pressure of humongous loss, some are just trying to make ends meet. Same is the case with cybersecurity sector too. The pandemic has indeed led to significant slowdown, but it is also a time when other sectors need cybersecurity the most due to remote working conditions.

Some other aspects that are worth noticing include: - COVID 19 has alerted every business to be more cautious of their data and even cybersecurity sector is working on newer and better technologies.

- Remote business interactions have now become a thing that can also be done post this pandemic. It will lead to newer opportunities in this space.

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