Category: Computer

Indian Computer Emergency Response Team focusing on partnership with other nationsGiven India’s cyber security imperatives, the National Democratic Alliance government has stepped up efforts to protect the critical networks from any such attacks, with international cooperation one of its focus areas.
As part of this strategy, Indian Computer Emergency Response Team, or CERT-In, is looking at security cooperation arrangements with its counterpart agencies in other countries that will share information in a timely manner to prevent cyber attacks and crimes. India has already inked such agreements with the US, Japan, South Korea, Australia, Malaysia, and Singapore.
Also, CERT-In which is the national nodal agency responsible for cyber security and works under the ministry of electronics and information technology is in touch with global service and product providers for advance information regarding cyber threats and attacks.
The development assumes importance in the backdrop of sensitive data leak of the Scorpene submarines being constructed in the country. Following the incident, the government fast-tracked setting up a National Cyber Coordination Centre and a Botnet and Malware Detection Centre with a spending of Rs.900 crore and Rs.100 crore, respectively, as reported by InfraCircle on 7 September.
“We are looking at security cooperation arrangements in the form of the memorandum of understandings (MoUs) between CERT-In and its overseas counterpart agencies that will share information,” said a senior government official requesting anonymity.
The government has also articulated a crisis management plan for countering cyber attacks and cyber terrorism for implementation by all ministries and departments of central government, state governments and their units in critical sectors.
A National Cyber Security Policy, 2013, was unveiled by the previous United Progressive Alliance government to safeguard physical and business assets of the country such as air defense systems, power infrastructure, nuclear plants and telecommunications networks.
Queries emailed to the spokesperson of the ministry of electronics and information technology on 8 September wasn’t immediately answered.
The issue also assumes importance as there are 1.4 million users across central and state governments who use government email addresses—nic.in and gov.in—and other services such as the Internet, intranet, and video conferencing. The government departments are dependent on data centers of National Informatics Centre.
Experts are aware of the clear and present danger.
“While earlier, developed nations were prime targets, Indian organizations have been barraged by attacks and are now on a par with other global companies at the receiving end of cyber attacks,” PwC India, a consultancy wrote in a report.
In June, the Reserve Bank of India mandated all banks to immediately put in place a cybersecurity policy elucidating the strategy containing an appropriate approach to combat cyber threats, given the level of complexity of business and acceptable levels of risk.
With the rapid increase in a number of Internet users in India, there is a need for a secure cyberspace. The number of Internet users in the country stood at 371 million at the end of June this year.
In March 2015, the prime minister’s office created the position of first cybersecurity chief and Gulshan Rai, national cyber security coordinator at the National Security Council Secretariat, was appointed. Rai used to head eSecurity and the cyber law division under the earlier ministry of communications and IT.

 

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India’s GDP is a function of its export of Information Technology to the Western world, let us acknowledge it far and loud, for once. There are brilliant codes written, genius software developed, in large numbers, literally every day. Tonnes of money is spent on the research and development of each of this software and hence, there is a major need to safeguard these intellectual properties – yes, they are that! – which drive India’s growth in more ways than one.

In this article, we look at protecting the intellectual rights of a software, a much-underrated entity although it makes for some of the highest copyright infringements.
Computer-related inventions can be really tricky. Firstly, you have to describe the invention very cleanly such that it makes sense and that, let me say, is not an easy job, especially when it relates to computers and software – areas not easily comprehensible to laypersons.

It is still easy to define the functionality that is required by the customer, and if you have the required coding skills, you can even build a programme that fulfills the desired functionality, but – and there is a big but here – the area that has to be protected by a patent lies somewhere in between. It lies midway between the functionality that is desired and the code that is written to achieve it. This makes defining it all very difficult, especially for those who are new to the area of patenting.

Software Patenting
“How to patent a software” is a hot question amongst many tech entrepreneurs in India, and in this day and age, when our country is undergoing a major entrepreneurial boom, we need a convincing answer to that question.

To put it in simple words, a software can be patented in India but it might not always be permitted.

Where Does India Stand On Patenting Software
In India, there was a clause proposed to include software patents way back in 2005 but the honorable Parliament of India rejected it. A common argument given in this regard is that software patenting form for minor inventions. So, as the argument goes, an invention that can be easily and individually replicated by many others should not be granted since it will only work to decelerate the progress of the field concerned.

If you think hard, there is a point there but less so when the country is India, a software giant in its own regard. This is in contrast to countries such as the US, Australia, and even Singapore, which allow the patenting of software innovations within their political boundaries Cloud Light.

Why Does The Indian Patent Office Reject Most Applications?
Section 3(K) of the Indian Patents Act, 1970 reads that “mathematical or business method or a computer program per se or algorithms” do not fall under the category of items that can be patented in India.

Therefore, keeping the law of our land in mind, the Patent Office duly rejects the majority of the applications even though they may be high on innovation, fortunately, or unfortunately.

Is There A Way Around It?
Yes! There is a workaround. If you go through the Manual of Patent Office Practice and Procedure pedantically, it states that not all computer programs fall under the category which cannot be patented in India. Hence, there are some kinds of software that can indeed be patented in India.

How To Safeguard Your Software In India Then?
The trick is not to patent the software program. Instead, try to patent the product in which the software plays an integral part, a very integral part, so much so that the software stands out more than the product itself.

That way, when you are patenting the product, you invariably provide patent protection to the accompanying software program too and you do that in the subtlest of ways, playing according to the rules made by the government.

Since we have discussed in detail about patenting, it is only fair that we look at other means of safeguarding intellectual property too, namely copyright and trademark registration. Do not underestimate them by any means in India.

Copyright For Software
In order to protect software in India, this model of protecting intellectual property is all the more common. What needs to be done then? Simple: register computer software and programs as works of literature according to Section 2(O) of the Copyright Act, 1957. So, a copyright protection makes more sense for safeguarding software in India.

When you are applying for copyright registration at the copyright office, you need to submit the source code along with the duly filled-in application form.

Trademark Registration
In addition to patenting and copyright registration, the trademark registration can also be used to safeguard the brand name of the software.

One software product may have any number of brand names. For example, if a software offers an only one of its kind functionality, say it allows you to “bulk send” pictures, then you can trademark the term “bulk send” so that your competitors are not able to use it.

Even if your competitors do come up with a similar feature, they will have to devise their own term which may not be instantly popular and will definitely not be able to feed off the popularity your term has pre-created. So, there is a small win for you.

Trademark registration is often underrated when it comes to protecting a software, be it in India or in lands where a provision for filing patents for software programs exist.

If the software or the product name is not trademark registered, the competition can make use of the catchy terms built by you and exploit the lack of patent laws concerning software in India.

So, it is necessary to be careful when it comes to software safeguarding. You need to protect the business from legal tangles or get in touch with firms who can help you out. These throw completely different challenges when it comes to safeguarding, in comparison to say protecting a piece of art. The latter is much simpler.

 

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New Delhi October 15 (ENA) The computer technology and information technology sectors in India have witnessed a significant growth in research and development activities. This is evident from the increase in the share of computer technology in the total patent applications in India over the years.

Distribution of patent applications across top fields of technology

Field of TechnologyShare

(percentage) in 2010

Share

(percentage) in 2014

Pharmaceuticals23.719.9
Organic fine chemistry23.118.1
Biotechnology6.15.0
Computer technology5.914.3
Basic materials chemistry4.63.9
Materials, metallurgy3.12.1
Food chemistry3.0NA
Chemical engineering2.52.2
Medical technology2.02.5
Macromolecular chemistry, polymers2.00NA
Others24.125.7
Source: World Intellectual Property Organization statistics database.

As the above table shows the share of computer technology has increased from 5.9% in 2010 to 14.3% in 2014. This shows that the boom that the country has witnessed in the information technology has also boosted research and development activities.

India is already a leading player in the international computer software market due to its highly capable manpower in the field. This has also created incentives for research and development activities.

However, the above table also shows that the shares of pharmaceuticals and organic fine chemistry in the total patent applications have declined. In fact, the increase in the share of computer technology has been at the cost of pharmaceuticals and organic fine chemistry. Despite this, the pharmaceuticals and organic fine chemistry are the top two fields with regard to the share in patent applications.

India is a leading producer of generic medicines in the world. In addition to this India is also a source of cheap generic medicines for different diseases to the low-income developing countries. Over the years, India has come under intense pressure by lobbying activities of multinational pharmaceuticals manufacturing companies that sees the generic medicines as a threat to their profit margins.

So, it is important that the country boosts its research and development activities in general and in pharmaceuticals in particular.

Apart from the above discussed three fields, there has not been any significant change in the share of other fields in the total patent applications Darbi.

One thing that should be of concern for the policymakers is that the share of biotechnology has declined. Given the fact that biotechnology is going to be an important field with regard to not only academic research but also with regard to industrial application, the policymakers need to give special attention to this field. (ENA Bureau)

New Delhi October 15 (ENA) The computer technology and information technology sectors in India have witnessed a significant growth in research and development activities. This is evident from the increase in the share of computer technology in the total patent applications in India over the years.

Distribution of patent applications across top fields of technology

As the above table shows the share of computer technology has increased from 5.9% in 2010 to 14.3% in 2014. This shows that the boom that the country has witnessed in the information technology has also boosted research and development activities.

India is already a leading player in the international computer software market due to its highly capable manpower in the field. This has also created incentives for research and development activities.

However, the above table also shows that the shares of pharmaceuticals and organic fine chemistry in the total patent applications have declined. In fact, the increase in the share of computer technology has been at the cost of pharmaceuticals and organic fine chemistry. Despite this, the pharmaceuticals and organic fine chemistry are the top two fields with regard to the share in patent applications.

India is a leading producer of generic medicines in the world. In addition to this India is also a source of cheap generic medicines for different diseases to the low-income developing countries. Over the years, India has come under intense pressure by lobbying activities of multinational pharmaceuticals manufacturing companies that sees the generic medicines as a threat to their profit margins.

So, it is important that the country boosts its research and development activities in general and in pharmaceuticals in particular.

Apart from the above discussed three fields, there has not been any significant change in the share of other fields in the total patent applications.

One thing that should be of concern for the policymakers is that the share of biotechnology has declined. Given the fact that biotechnology is going to be an important field with regard to not only academic research but also with regard to industrial application, the policymakers need to give special attention to this field. (ENA Bureau)

 

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NAGPUR: When computers were a relatively new concept in Nagpur during the 1990s, Pramod Bhalerao, a physically challenged professor from Government Institute of Science, was in much demand, on account of his mastery over the machine. He decided to dedicate his expertise and vast knowledge of computers for the welfare of disabled and handicapped youths from the city.
A senior life member of Computer Society of India (CSI) and Fellow of Institute of Electronics and Telecommunications Engineers (IETE), Bhalerao has trained nearly 500 disabled youths that helped them secure jobs. After being nominated as an expert member of Department of Electronics and Accreditation of Computer Courses (DOEACC), an autonomous scientific society under the Indian Ministry of Communications and Information Technology, Bhalerao helped open 15 training centers in the 1990s. The retired lecturer in physics spoke to TOI about his life, struggle, and success. Excerpts from the interview:
Q. How did it all start?
A. Since I had a problem in one leg, I was well aware of the problems faced by those with disabilities and always wanted to do something for them. The opportunity came when computers were introduced in the city. I got a rare chance to learn computers and use my knowledge for the benefit of needy persons. I suggested opening a computer lab for the disabled students at our college. My idea was well supported by the then director and support staff. However, funds were a major crunch. At that time, I got a chance to participate in an international conference at Vancouver in Canada as a resource person, where I put forward my concept of providing computer training to the disabled. It was liked by all and I received USD 20,000 aid from the United Nations to open a computer guidance center for the disabled.
Q. Was it difficult to convince handicapped persons?
A. After receiving the aid, I started computer communication and guidance center at Institute of Science. It was perhaps the first such center in the city in the 1990s. Obviously, there were a lot of difficulties at the initial stage, as computers had to be kept in air-conditioned rooms. When the machines came in 1994, there was a huge rush to catch their glimpse. I still remember curious people used to ask me whether they could touch the computers. We relentlessly pursued with our objective and succeeded in attracting the handicapped. Slowly, the center gained popularity and many students started approaching it.
Q. How many students you have trained so far?
A. Roughly 480 until my retirement. They comprise physically challenged, visually impaired and hearing-impaired. The technical training they got proved to be a boon for them that changed their lives and the outlook of society towards them. A few years after the training lab opened, about 60 of our students were placed in government and private sectors. Other students established their own desktop publishing and computer typing agencies in the city.
Q. You also spoke about training a blind student Dba Press.
A. One visually challenged student was trained in draft preparation with the help of a speech synthesizer wherein the computer used to speak out the sentences she typed, enabling her to make corrections. She is now practicing at Nagpur bench of Bombay High Court. A speech dialogue was demonstrated between a hearing-impaired and a normal person with help of speech synthesizer which received a good response from blind students. Visibility testing workshops were also conducted from time to time in which impaired students participated and their vision was tested with the help of software. Students with 10%-20% of visibility could see the images on screen and were thrilled by the experience. Subsequently, that software was recommended to the blind schools.
Q. But why were only handicaps trained?
A. We granted them an opportunity, as they’re heavily dependent on others’ help. But I also conducted training programs for high court judges of Nagpur bench at Judicial Officers Training Academy (JOTI) in Civil Lines. Moreover, training was imparted to staff deputed by Mantralaya from Mumbai. I also conducted the training session for various bank staffers. As an expert DOEACC member, I encouraged the opening of more computer training centers in the city.
Q. What are your other activities now?
A. I have retired and can’t walk without somebody’s help. Even my age is fast catching up. But I still give guidance to youngsters who come to me with difficulties. I am fond of reading and impart knowledge to youths. When my old students like those from the Adani family come to me, it makes me happy.

 

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