Discuss the various threats to internal security posed by smart phones, browsers and applications. What should be the government policies towards tackling such threats?

India’s internal security is threatened by conventional factors like communalism, insurgency on the north-eastern border, Left wing extremism in eastern part of India. They threaten to destroy the secular, peaceful and democratic character of India.
With the rise of internet and ICT, there are new threats that are emerging to internal security.

  • Mobilisation on an issues is taking place through social media which is used by two third of the people through their smart phones. These mobilisations are generally across the fault lines like religion, caste, region etc.
  • Thus spreading of any fake news or message can have severe consequence for instance in 2013 hate messages against North-eastern people had led to their exodus from many cities.
  • Social media is used as tool for radicalisation, recruitment, communication and training.
  • Use of social media is generally undertaken with low regard to privacy and security concern for example sharing sensitive photos can create bigger issues like one in West Bengal.
  • During Doklam Standoff concerns were raised about about huge presence of Chinese mobile makers like Xiomi, Oppo in India.
  • Dark web and encrypted apps are being used by terrorist outfits like ISIS for execution of terror attacks.

Government and law enforcement agencies will have to use the same platform like social media to reach out to masses and keep an eye on such events. Suspension of internet services would be a short term solution to the issue. Creating and educating masses regarding such threats is best measure against any instigating fake messages.

Question for UPSC Mains:
Discuss the various threats to internal security posed by smart phones, browsers and applications. What should be the government policies towards tackling such threats?

Published: September 25, 2017 | Modified:June 27, 2019

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