According to Google India’s CEO, online safety is essential for India’s digital future.

Google announces new initiatives to help people improve their online security. In just the first quarter of this year, there were almost 18 million cyberattacks against IndiaGoogle emphasizes the value of user education in preserving online safety.

Do you recall receiving SMS or WhatsApp messages suggesting you had been chosen for a part-time job or a lottery? the ones that prompt you to click on a dubious link to collect your prize or join a WhatsApp group only to lose money from your bank account or divulge personal information in the process.

Many of you have probably seen these kinds of messages virtually regularly, I’m sure. The world’s largest search engine, Google, is well aware of this problem and wants to do its part to protect Indian internet users from the malicious intentions of more tech-savvy hackers.

With just 700 million people online – half of its entire population – India saw over 18 million cyberattacks which is around 200,000 threats and online scams every day in the first three months of 2022 alone, according to security firm Norton. That’s insane!

Online protection against hackers becomes crucial, especially for consumers who are just getting started with the Internet. Under this broad umbrella, Google India conducted the second Safer With Google event in New Delhi, where it unveiled new initiatives aimed at bolstering its online security controls and empowering internet users through awareness campaigns. After all, recognizing such a threat in the first place is necessary for dealing with it.

“As more of India goes online, it’s critical to make sure that connection opportunities don’t compromise online safety. It is critical that they are able to trust the internet in order to take advantage of its full and true potential, whether they are the farmer using it to research new crops, us using it to educate and empower people, or even the next Neeraj Chopra, who used to watch videos online to improve his javelin throw. Therefore, safety is not a compliance box to be checked. It is the base upon which we must construct our digital future, according to Sanjay Gupta, vice president and country head of Google India.

In a situation like this, when there are continually new technical developments and if you’re uninformed, there’s a lot to lose online, protecting children and even grandparents becomes even more crucial. Due to their failure to adhere to their kid compliance standards, Google erased over 1 million videos from YouTube and disabled over 60,000 channels internationally just in the first quarter of this year.

As local threat vectors change, we are concentrating on enhancing the security of our products, modifying our policies to stop unauthorized use of our platforms, and discovering and eliminating threats at the source. According to Saikat Mitra, Senior Director & Head of Trust & Safety, Google APAC, “as we move forward, we will continue to step up these efforts, partnering with industry groups, regulators, civil society organizations, and law enforcement agencies to share our technology, insights, and expertise.

CYBERSECURITY ROADSHOWS TO UPSKILL OVER 1 LAKH DEVELOPERS

Google has launched multi-city Cybersecurity Roadshows for developers, entrepreneurs, and IT professionals where it would teach over 1 lakh participants throughout India the best practices, tools, and guidelines for developing safer apps. The annual Google Developers DevFest, which attracts more than 15,000 developers, will now have a cybersecurity course. This program’s goal is to encourage developers in their efforts to create apps that are more secure from the bottom up.

$2 MILLION GRANT TO NGOS FOR DIGITAL LITERACY

Google.org is donating $2 million (16 crores) to charity groups that it believes would make it easier for women, members of the LGBTQIA+ community, and elderly people to access the Internet securely. These groups include Collective Good Foundation, Point of View, and HelpAge India.

The Collective Good Foundation hopes to use this award to provide outreach activities, materials, and resources in English, Hindi, Bengali, Telugu, Marathi, and other five languages to more than 9 lakh individuals. Similar to this, TechSakhi, a digital hotline for women and LGBTQIA+ users with regional content in Hindi, Bengali, Marathi, and Tamil throughout six Indian states, will get support from the Point of View foundation. Over 50,000 older persons will receive digital literacy and safety training from HelpAge India so they may use the internet without worrying about scams.

STAYING TWO STEPS AHEAD OF CYBER FRAUD

Google has also emphasised how crucial user knowledge is for maintaining internet safety. The core message of this ad urges people to avoid clicking on any dubious links or disclosing any financial information to callers posing as bank representatives. In order to do this, it collaborated with the Ministry of Electronics and Information Technology (MEITY) and Digital India to launch four new PSA (Public Service Announcement) commercials starring Neena Gupta, Sanya Malhotra, Rana Daggubati, and Rajkummar Rao. Using consumer channels including websites, apps, SMS, and ATMs, HDFC Bank, Axis Bank, Kotak Mahindra Bank, Airtel, SBI, and ICICI will help Google’s multilingual awareness campaign by warning customers about fraud.

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