CERT-In to conduct security audit of COVID-19 data 

#GS2 #Governance 

It will ensure safety of details collected in cloud platform  

  • In the wake of the controversy surrounding the Sprinklr deal, the Kerala government has decided to carry out a security audit by CERT-In, the nodal agency responsible for dealing with cyber security threats, of the various data collected by government departments and agencies related to COVID-19.  
  • The Kerala State IT Mission (KSITM) Director has been authorised to entrust the agency empanelled under CERT-In (Indian Computer Emergency Response Team) under the Union Ministry of Electronics and Information Technology to carry out the audit work.   
  • The agency will have to execute the security audit of the data stored in the Amazon cloud platform in line with the guidelines of the government.   
  • The KSITM Director to execute a Non-Disclosure Agreement with the agency before commencing the audit, which shall include conditions to ensure security of data shared for audit purposes.  

High-level meeting 

  • The government felt it necessary to analyse the data collected using data analytics techniques and tools and to ensure the security of the data collected and captured in the Cloud system, says the order issued by the Electronics and Information Technology Department.  
  • Incidentally, the government order has been issued on April 21 when the Sprinklr row was raging in the State.   
  • The Left Democratic Front (LDF) government has roped in the U.S.-based company to collate the personal health data collected by field-level workers from nearly 1.75 lakh people categorised as “vulnerable and potentially exposed” to the pandemic.  

Australia cancels premier air exercise 


Pitch Black 2020, scheduled to be held in July, scrapped in view of COVID crisis 

  • Australia has informed India that its premier multilateral air combat training exercise — Pitch Black 2020— scheduled from July 27 to August 14 has been cancelled due to the COVID-19 situation.  
  • The IAF was not participating with aircraft, Ex Pitch Black 2020 would have provided an opportunity for engagement.  

Next edition in 2022 

  • The exercise is also an opportunity to interact with forces from across the globe. The next edition of Pitch Black is scheduled for 2022.  
  • In the last edition of Pitch Black in 2018, the IAF for the first time deployed fighter aircraft which “provide a unique opportunity for exchange of knowledge and experience with these nations in a dynamic warfare environment”.  
  • The defence and strategic engagement with Australia has steadily gone up in recent years especially on the bilateral front with naval cooperation at the forefront.   
  • The bilateral naval exercise AUSINDEX early last year saw participation of the largest Australian contingent ever to India with over 1,000 personnel.  

Exercise Pitch Black 

  • Is a biennial warfare exercisehosted by the Royal Australian Air Force (RAAF).   
  • The exercise is normally held in Northern Australia, primarily at RAAF Bases Darwinand Tindal.   
  • The aim of the exercise is to practice Offensive Counter Air(OCA) and Defensive Counter Air(DCA) combat, in a simulated war environment.   
  • It traditionally consists of a 'red team' and a 'blue team' based at separate locations, with one attacking the other.  
  • The first Pitch Black exercises took place on 15–16 June 1981 between different RAAF units.   
  • The exercise began in 1990 starting with training between Australia and Singapore, and it then expanded to other international air forces with defence ties to Australia being invited, which have come to consist of France'sArmée de l'Air; theRoyal Malaysian Air Force, theRepublic of Singapore Air Force; theRoyal Thai Air Force; theRoyal New Zealand Air Force; theUnited States Air Force; and Britain'sRoyal Air Force. Countries unable to participate are able to send observers.  
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