Pratap Vikram Singh

Staff Writer • India Edition

Pratap is based out of Delhi and covers policy and myriad intersections with the other sectors, most notably technology. He has worked with Governance Now for seven years, reporting on technology, telecom policy, and the social sector.

15 Articles published

Top Comments by Pratap Vikram Singh

Telecom networks teeter as India's lockdown spikes data traffic

Hi Ankur, Thank you for writing. It is not necessary that increased utilisation will translate to higher revenue. We will know this clearly in the quarterly results if there was significant increase in data top ups, and this doesn't apply in the case of Reliance Jio, which gave additional data to all its subscribers. Moreover, as you rightly said, there is cost linked to increased capacity of the network -- either through addition of a new site or adding hardware/software in the existing sites. With more number of sites, the operational expenditure increases too. In case of ISPs, they already provide ample data to their subscribers within the monthly plans. The subscribers were not using so much data until work from home, social distancing norms kicked in. Their capacity utilisation has gone up, but it won't impact revenue figures. Not unless they add new subscribers.

Pratap Vikram Singh

Watch this space: New Bill could unleash facial recognition free-for-all

Rajeev, no where in the piece we have argued to 'throw the baby with the bathwater', unless you can pin point to specific section. As writers, its our job to inform our readers. Whether tech solutions used by authorities to supposedly take down criminal and terror networks is being used for the stated purpose, or it is -- hypothetically speaking -- being used to profile peaceful protestors and students, break into university campuses and thrash them. Thats where safeguards come in. Thats the point we made in the piece.

Pratap Vikram Singh

Watch this space: New Bill could unleash facial recognition free-for-all

Hi Rajeev, Even without us knowing, government agencies do keep a tab on communications over networks. Biometrics (finger print, face image) based tracking are/will be powerful weapons/tools in the hands of authorities. As long as these are used to nail criminals/extremists/terrorists, i don't think there are disagreements. But definitely we need answerability of the agencies, and strong safeguards to protect the innocent or people who merely differ/dissent with the government. Thats precisely why democracies such as US, UK, etc., have parliamentary oversight on intelligence agencies/surveillance.

Pratap Vikram Singh

India’s cybersecurity firms struggle for a seat at the government tender table

Hi Chaitanya, Thanks for writing. I disagree. CERT-IN is not a gatekeeper--at least for over 10 companies i spoke to in security products. They do tests for solutions in vulnerability assessment and penetration testing--and you need some organisation to do that job. They don't have empanelment for variety of products--SIEM, next gen products, etc. Some of the organisations you mentioned have also put Gartner MQ as en eligibility criteria :) Of course the story covers Big Fours aspect.

Pratap Vikram Singh

India’s cybersecurity firms struggle for a seat at the government tender table

Sunil, i agree to the point you are making. Except: 1. You need to provide a fair ecosystem for companies which have invested heavily in India and plan to stay longer in the game. If their product is as good and competitive as coming from global security companies--they deserve chance. 2. Denying a chance to such products / companies because India doesn't have a Gartner like technically competent organisation which can vet the solutions and certify them is sad. 3. Critical installations in the country use security solutions coming frm the US, Israel, etc. Officials within security establishment understand and acknowledge the risks that it pose. Government has talked about creating indigenous solutions in the past. It is again talking of incubation, etc. But it may remain on paper in absence of a concrete plan, enforcement, and a competent organisation to validate the products.

Pratap Vikram Singh

India’s cybersecurity firms struggle for a seat at the government tender table

Thank you so much Chiradeep for sharing the SI's perspective in detail. I can't agree more with the summary-- Indian companies choosing to stay longer in the game will need to work with and earn the trust of the buyer organisations and system integrators. Cyber security landscape is continuously evolving and only Indian product companies can't meet the requirements. However those offering next gen solutions and willing to stay longer in the game need a fair ecosystem to scale and reach to large customer base. That will only happen something when the government (and the industry) takes conscious efforts to create a new framework and structure to provide the right ecosystem. As far as global product companies are concerned, not every product they make work in Indian environment. During my reporting, i did come across examples of the efficacy of such solutions in Passport & CBDT projects.

Pratap Vikram Singh

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