US and India collaborate over cyber security

The Information Technology Association of America (ITA) and India's National Association of Software and Service Companies (NASSCOM) this week signed a memorandum of understanding to lay a roadmap for their collaboration on the prevention of cyber crime.

Both countries are to work at building collaborations between vendors and customers to secure government and enterprise information systems, as well as to grow the level of security training and certification in the information technology workforces of the two countries.

The move comes after the two organisations jointly announced their findings of a poll on the information security market and customer perception, conducted across 95 NASSCOM member companies and 20 ITAA member companies.

Key findings of the poll highlighted that 82% of customers of Indian IT companies are more concerned about information security than ever before, while 76% of customers of US IT companies are concerned about information security. Security is also a key differentiator, with 75% of Indian companies and 82% of the US companies agreeing that sophisticated information security offerings and practices offer a competitive advantage. Indeed, budgetary allocation for security has increased 45% in the last year for Indian customers and 41% for US customers.

The poll also found that governments need to be proactive and do more in the information security space. Harris Miller, president of the ITAA said: "The findings of the poll indicate a need for US and India - government and industry, to collaborate and partner in alleviating the importance of cyber security technology and implementation."

Kiran Karnik, president of NASSCOM added: "Indian IT Industry is an integral part of the global supply chain for services. As we are undertaking more and more high- end work and handling sensitive data, it becomes essential to proactively adopt best practices in security and integrate security into normal business practice of every company. Our objective is to position India as a trusted sourcing destination through a process of engagement, education, enactment and enforcement with a strong focus on IP protection and robust legislative framework."

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