September 2019

Daily Current Affairs (22-09-19)

CYBERDOME PROJECT: ALL YOU NEED TO KNOW

Related Topics: Cyber Security, Darknet

Context

According to Additional Director General of Police and nodal officer of Cyberdome, cyber crimes are increasing alarmingly in Kerala.

What is Cyberdome Project?

  • Cyberdome is a technological research and development Centre of Kerala Police Department conceived as a Cyber Centre of excellence in cyber security as well as technology augmentation for effective policing.
  • It envisages as a high tech Public-Private Partnership Centre of collaboration for different stakeholders in the domain of cyber security and handling of cyber crimes, in a proactive manner.
  • It is based at Technopark campus in Thiruvananthapuram.
  • They are the State law enforcement’s first line of defence against a range of online threats.

Objective

The main objective of the Cyberdome is to prevent cyber crimes through the development of a cyber threat resilient ecosystem in the state to defend against the growing threat of cyber attacks by synergizing with other departments and nodal agencies of the State.

Aim

It aims to provide a safe and secure cyber world for each and every citizen in the state.

Stakehoders

Cyberdome makes a collective coordination among the Government departments and agencies, academia, research groups, non-profitable organizations, individual experts from the community, ethical hackers, private organizations, and other law enforcement agencies in the country.

PPP Model

  • Apart from the Government stakeholders, it is also working hand in hand with industry fraternity in public-private partnership model for equipping the Kerala Police by adapting the latest technologies, in a rapidly changing environment.
  • This will enhance the ability of Cyberdome in addressing the highly challenging and dynamic nature of cyber threats.

Significance of Cyberdome

  • Cyberdome has forewarned the Kerala government of a possible ransomware attack in March 2017.
  • It has developed cyber-surveillance tools to detect and convict those responsible for industrial espionage.
  • The tools unearth moles that lie deep in critical information networks and siphon off data clandestinely.
  • It has also initiated successful propaganda war against online games such as Blue Whale.
  • The game, which encourages youngsters to engage in death-defying daredevilry, had caused a few deaths in the country and spawned concern among parents.
  • It has used social engineering as the lynchpin of its policing strategy to snoop on radical groups that use the net for extremist activities.
  • It has launched a covert cyber-surveillance and infiltration programme to crack down on child pornography.
  • Images of children captured furtively on mobile phones are increasingly finding their way to porn websites, and Kerala is a significant contributor.
  • The operation, code-named P-Hunt, resulted in the arrest of 22 persons in March.

Rising Cyber Crimes

Misuse of Data

  • As consumers rely more on plastic money than hard cash for transactions, they sometimes inadvertently compromise their data, leading to security breaches.
  • A vast cache of personal and payment information is traded online on the Dark Web, the underworld of the Internet where a range of contraband, including child porn and drugs, is bought and sold using cryptocurrency.
  • The lawbreakers operate using stolen mobile phone connections and public WiFi networks to remain incognito.

Credit/Debit card frauds

Kerala Police had busted at least three credit/debit card fraud networks recently with the help of their counterparts in Jharkhand, Uttarakhand and Chhattisgarh.

Crimes against Women

  • Social media smears that target women are worryingly on the increase.
  • Several members of the Women in Cinema Collective had repeatedly received death and rape threats on social media after they stood up to workplace harassment and gender inequality in the Malayalam cinema industry.

Upsurge in child porn

  • A covert cyber-surveillance and infiltration operation by the Kerala Police with the help of the Interpol to crack down on child pornography had led to the arrest of at least 20 persons from across the State.
  • Investigators points out that the images traded in child porn sites and groups are candid snaps of minors from water theme parks, schools, beaches, homes, restaurants and resorts.

ICACCOPS Programme

  • Recently, the State police and Cyberdome have partnered with the Interpol and the International Centre for Missing and Exploited Children (ICMC) to combat child porn.
  • The entities have cobbled together an international alliance that entails transfer and development of the latest artificial intelligence-powered cyber tools to crack down on a wide range of crimes.
  • The Interpol has granted the State police access to its latest cyber investigation tool, the Internet Crimes Against Children and Child Online Protective Services (ICACCOPS) programme.
  • It helps law enforcers conduct targeted surveillance of persons who share and trade child pornography on peer-to-peer user networks.

 

[Source: The Hindu, cyberdome.kerala.gov]

 

CENTRAL ADVISORY BOARD OF EDUCATION (CABE)

Related Topics: Governance, Education

News

Union HRD Minister has chaired the Special Meeting of the Central Advisory Board of Education (CABE) held in New Delhi.

What is CABE?

  • It is the highest advisory body to advise the Central and State Governments in the field of education.
  • It provides a forum for widespread consultation and examination of issues relating to educational and cultural development.

Function

  • To review the progress of education from time to time.
  • To appraise the extent and manner in which the education policy has been implemented by the Central and State Governments, and other concerned agencies, and to give appropriate advice in the matter;
  • To advice regarding coordination between the Central and State Governments/UT Administrations

Composition

  • The committee has representatives of central organisation, universities, state and bodies including planning commission, NGOs and civic society.
  • Union Minister of Human Resource Development is the Chairman of the board.

Background

  • The proposal for setting up a Central Advisory Board of Education was first put forward by the Calcutta University Commission (1917-19).
  • It was first established in 1920 and dissolved in 1923 as a measure of economy.
  • It was revived in 1935 and has been in existence ever since.
[Source: PIB]

 

NORMS FOR LIQUID FUNDS

Related Topics: Debt Mutual Funds, SEBI

News

As part of its attempts to strengthen the risk management framework for liquid funds, the Securities and Exchange Board of India (SEBI) has made it mandatory for such funds to hold at least 20% of its net assets in liquid assets while mandating an exit load on investors that exit within seven days of making an investment.

What are the New Norms?

  • Liquid funds shall hold at least 20% of their net assets in liquid assets. For this purpose, liquid assets shall include cash, government securities, T-bills and repo on government securities.
  • When the exposure in such liquid assets falls below 20% of net assets of the scheme, the fund house will first have to meet the 20% norm before making any further investments.
  • Liquid funds and overnight funds have been barred from parking money, pending deployment, in short-term deposits of scheduled commercial banks and also debt securities having structured obligations (SO rating) and/or credit enhancements (CE rating).
  • Debt securities with government guarantee have been excluded from such restriction.
  • While imposing an exit load on investors exiting the scheme within seven days of making an investment, SBI has directed industry body Association of Mutual Funds in India (AMFI) to prescribe a minimum exit load on a graded basis.
  • The new norms will be effective from April 1, 2020.

What are Liquid Funds?

  • Liquid funds are a category of debt mutual funds which invest in very short-term market instruments like treasury bills, government securities and call money.
  • According to SEBI’s definition, liquid funds can invest in debt and money market securities with maturity of up to 91 days only.
  • Assets invested are not tied up for a long time as liquid funds do not have a lock-in period.

[Source: The Hindu]

 

FACTS OF THE DAY

SHODH SHUDDHI

Union Minister for HRD has launched the Plagiarism Detention Software (PDS) “Shodh Shuddhi”. It is being implemented by INFLIBNET, an Inter University Centre (IUC) of University Grants Commission (UGC). Initially, about 1000 Universities/ Institutions including Central Universities; Centrally Funded Technical Institutions (CFTIs); State Public Universities; Deemed Universities; Private Universities; Inter University Centre (IUCs) & Institutes of National Importance are being provided with this service. It will significantly help to improve the quality of research outcome by ensuring the originality of ideas and publication of the research scholars.

PACEsetter FUND PROGRAMME

Union Ministry of New and Renewable Energy awarded Grants to the awardees of the second round of PACEsetter fund programme. It was constituted by India and the USA in 2015. It is a Rs. 50 crore (USD 7.9 million) fund jointly capitalized by the Governments of the Republic of India and the United States of America. It is a joint fund to provide early-stage grant funding to accelerate the commercialization of innovative off-grid clean energy products, systems, and business models. The main purpose of the fund is to improve the viability of off-grid renewable energy businesses that sell small scale (under 1 megawatt) clean energy systems to individuals and communities without access to grid connected power or with limited/intermittent access (less than 8 hours per day).

DENISOVANS

For the first time, Scientists have come up with an image of the face of a Denisovan woman based on DNA-methylation. Using this, scientists found that Denisovans, an extinct group of hominins discovered a decade ago, were very similar in appearance to Neanderthals, but had wider jaw and skull.

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