The ambitious Digital India programme is expanding steadily as envisaged. The main idea behind this great initiative was to connect and unify the whole nation, disregarding demographic and location differences. It aims to make the digital infrastructure the core service. In doing so, this digital infrastructure will offer access to services and governance for all Indian citizens.

Why is the Digital India Programme a Landmark Initiative?

This ambitious programme seeks to link all governmental agencies so that these can provide smooth services to the citizens. This will relieve them of the headache of visiting different government offices to get their work done. So, the basic objective of the Digital India programme is to take advantage of technology to improve governance for its people. This will make government offices far more accountable and ensure better productivity and efficiency.

How Can the Programme be Improved?

As this programme gains momentum, the cloud first approach is also gaining ground. Both traditional and on-site systems will gradually shift to a cloud platform or will integrate with a cloud platform. This is necessary to offer e-services to their clients. Cloud hosting is preferred because of the high scalability, flexibility and efficiency it guarantees. These advantages are made available to client enterprises for an affordable price.  Besides these advantages, there is also the responsibility of making India a digital nation. Just like there is a need for proper and far-reaching defence mechanisms to protect our borders, there is also the need for properly-crafted cloud security provisions. So, with the gradual evolution of a government cloud strategy, the time has come to consider the security aspects of the cloud platform. It has therefore become necessary to carry out a radical evaluation of the current security systems to detect the shortcomings. This is because the change to a cloud based platform will dramatically alter the technology landscape.

What Changes have to be Made in the New Paradigm?

It is imperative to ensure that the new structure incorporates the earlier security provisions too. However, what is needed is a higher degree of sophistication in order to establish a secure hybrid environment. It is also imperative to ensure that this comprehensive security strategy gets executed uniformly. And this is where the security brokers and gateways play a critical role.

Unlike earlier when individual systems were forced to handle their security independently, the cloud security broker will monitor the cloud and protect its systems. This means that security concerns of all the various systems will be addressed together as a whole and not separately, regardless of where these systems may be located. So, the brokerage system will let one process or a single entity to be responsible for the different systems which make up any government system. This security gateway broker will also be updated with policies which it can deploy across every system, both on-site and within the cloud.

When you consider a government cloud, you must understand that valuable data belonging to citizens is continuously being transferred among its different parts. This is part of daily operations and it is necessary to make sure that such data can only be accessed and viewed by authorized personnel or authenticated users. So, a citizen’s Aadhar card for example, will be used for verification purposes by various agencies like banks, government offices, IT departments and even hospitals.

When you have a cloud security broker, it will get a total view of all the systems. It has the power to monitor personnel who have the authority to access a citizen’s Aadhar card data. Only it can know why a user is accessing this data and therefore, it can stop fraudulent access. The security gateway has the intelligence for identifying when information is being intercepted or compromised. So, if there is an unauthorized person accessing your Aadhar card data and he is doing so from different places and many times within a short period, the broker can trigger an alarm. Since this situation is not normal, the broker may even block the user access for a period of time during which this event will be properly investigated. Moreover, the broker can also help by identifying unauthorized use of cloud apps by government agencies. This will help to avoid data loss and consolidate cloud data governance.

The cloud security broker can also successfully prevent spread of malware to different government systems. Malware spread is common because of heavy traffic flow between these systems. So, it needs vigilant monitoring and this is where a cloud security broker can help.

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