UK, India sets up joint cybercrime task force

The collaboration will give additional assurance to the U.K. as it looks to protect its citizens' personal banking and mobile phone data, much of which are currently stored on Indian servers.
Written by Kevin Kwang, Contributor

India and the United Kingdom will be looking to seal an agreement Tuesday to establish a joint task force to combat online crimes.

U.K. hopes the joint task force will safeguard its citizens' personal data, much of which are stored on Indian servers.

In a Reuters report Tuesday, Prime Ministers David Cameron and Manmohan Singh are expected to agree on plans to create the new unit in a move that the U.K. hopes will help it safeguard the personal banking and mobile phone data of millions of its citizens. It was noted that much of such information is currently stored on Indian servers.

The U.K. prime minister is currently in the midst of a three-day trade and investment trip to India, the report added.

"The two leaders are expected to agree to a substantial strengthening of practical cooperation between British and Indian authorities to increase the security of British and Indian computer networks and to help defend them against cyber attacks by terrorists, criminals and hostile states," Cameron's office said in a statement to Reuters.

Cameron also said: "I think we're forging these partnerships with other countries--including trusted partners like India--is twofold. One is, other countries securing their data is effectively helping us secure our data. Secondly, I think this is an area where Britain has some real competitive and technology advantages."

While India strengthens its ties with U.K., the Asian giant is still waiting on the European Union to accord it data-secure status.

Last June, the EU launched a study into India's data laws to see if these are adequate to safeguard sensitive information. Without being recognized as a data-secure state, information such as intellectual property and patient information cannot be transferred from Europe to India, and this hampers Indian outsourcing companies from clinching contracts from European customers.

India said in September 2012 it will only agree to a free trade agreement with the EU if the latter grants it data-secure destination status.

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