In a global cyber security pact, the United States and India signed a Memorandum of Understanding (MOU) to foster closer cooperation and timely exchange of information between their respective government organizations responsible for cyber security.
Jane Holl Lute, Deputy Secretary for the U.S. Department of Homeland Security (DHS) and R. Chandrashekhar, Secretary, India Department of Information Technology inked the MOU in New Delhi. The pact helps fulfill the joint commitment to advance global security and countering terrorism, officials said.
Secretary of Homeland Security Janet Napolitano visited India in May to launch the U.S.-India Homeland Security Dialogue with Indian Minister of Home Affairs P. Chidambaram. The 2011 HSD was the first comprehensive bilateral dialogue on homeland security issues between the United States and India. During her visit, the countries agreed to create the MOU, and negotiations for the non-binding arrangements wrapped up at the June 2011 meeting of the Information and Communications Technology Dialogue by the Indo-U.S. Working Group in Washington, D.C.
The MOU establishes best practices for the exchange of critical cyber security information and expertise between the two governments through the Indian Computer Emergency Response Team (CERT-In), Department of Information Technology, Ministry of Communications and Information Technology, and DHS’ United States Computer Emergency Readiness Team (US-CERT).
Through this arrangement, the respective governments and cyber security communities in the United States and India will have the ability to coordinate with their counterparts on a broad range of technical and operational cyber issues.
US-CERT’s mission is to improve the nation’s cyber security posture, coordinate cyber information sharing and proactively manage cyber risks to the nation while protecting the constitutional rights of Americans. US-CERT serves as the operational arm of DHS’ National Cyber Security Division.