BAD, Very BAD…

September 14, 2008 at 2:20 pm | Posted in criticism, Politics, protocol, Technical | 1 Comment
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      A standard procedure when the comment to a post grows longer than the post and is mostly disconnected to it, is to write a new one. Hence drawing from this, I continue.

      The Monty analogy fits the situation perfectly. Resilience at its stupid best.

      And now there is this new thread that Narendra Modi had pre-warned the PM, and M.K.Narayanan – the N.S.A , regarding a clear threat to Delhi. Several people might wonder why Modi didn’t bring this out to the public.

      The idea of any intelligence/security related pre-warnings is that the government/authority is to be made aware of it before a public disclosure. Standard protocol.

       As an analogy it is something followed even by white-hat hackers/ exploit researchers as well. The 30-90 day disclosure rule. So that the vendor [ in this case , the Government of India ] can act on it much in advance, without tipping off the adversaries.

       So, this brings an interesting situation. Why, even in the face of an imminent threat, was there no clear cut action taken? Why are bombs defused only after some go off?.. and so on.

I would completely understand if this is just the Home ministry going lax, on what is just a tiny issue of National Security. But if this is childish cross-party obstinate behaviour, something that we are all to used to by now, it raises some serious concerns.

        Especially since the PM wants to create a Federal Agency to tackle terror. A federal agency is built on the premise of state-centre co-operation pertaining to every aspect regarding the security of the nation. Now, if this isn’t a major example of a BAD game of Chinese Whispers, I’m not sure what else to call it.

        Now, to the newly cropped up development of hacking Wi-Fi Networks, and then using that to send terror emails to media organizations.

        Wi-Fi networks are not safe. Lets face it. For chrissakes, there have even been comic strips about it.

For a government that is so obsessed with getting a backdoor entry into the 256-AES encryption algorithms used by RIM-Blackberry , isn’t this a bigger and more feasible a threat to ignore?

         I mean, an absconding tech-trained terrorist would find it a piece-of-nilgiri-cake work to hack into some fat-american’s un-protected wifi network, than strut around with a neat Blackberry sending Indian Mujahiddeen mails on the fly.

          Then, there is the issue of security pepped up all around the major cities as soon as an attack is done. Previously, there used to be a large time-frame between two attacks. So, it was almost passable that the security didn’t know it was coming.

           Now, that attacks are happening just weeks apart, one wonders, what exactly this pepping up is all about.

           For an honourable minister of India ( Kapil Sibal @ War of Words to Arun Jaitley ) to tell that these attacks are a result of the BJP’s antics in Gujarat 2002, is nothing short of a lame excuse. These do nothing other than incite a political flame-war, doing more harm than good. What any party at the centre needs to realize is that the situation has changed drastically since 2002.

           For the major worry, in the recent set of attacks, is the choice of soft-targets. Be it local trains, or busy markets; hospitals, or bus stops. As one Mr.Das of the TOI puts it, prior to POTA being removed, most attacks were by so-called Pakistani para-troopers, militants born, brought-up, and trained in Pakistan. Post-POTA has seen an influx of home-grown terrorism.

           I’m not stupid to believe that Correlation implies Causation . That is the job for conspiracy theorists. All I say, is that current mechanisms are not adequate. If the POTA was a draconian law, improve upon it. We don’t need something as uncivilised as the U.S. Patriot act, but we sure need something effective and soon.

          India has seen different methods of attack over its resplendent history. It has survived through each of them, and in most cases, has emerged out stronger.Unfortunately, that opinion is being shattered in the wake of these recent developments.

          In dark and troubled times such as these, the country should stay united and focussed, sense should prevail, and actions be taken at the earliest, lest these insane acts crumble the beautiful ethos of the nation, that is India.

 

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As of writing this post, there have been two major updates:- (September 22, 2008)

Update 1: Indian Government successfully installs Deep Packet Inspection. This means better sniffing of all your emails in realtime. Yay. Read here.

 

Update 2: IB has successfully cracked the BlackBerry Code. Without help from RIM of course. Yay Yay.

Read here.

 

Both of these developments happened after yours truly wrote this post.

But as I said before, I am not implying  that “correlation implies causation”. 🙂 🙂

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