Digital players must ensure safety, security of all Indians: Union Minister Ravi Shankar Prasad

New Delhi [India], Nov 28 (ANI): Amid the controversy surrounding WhatsApp privacy breach issue, Union Minister Ravi Shankar Prasad on Thursday said that digital players have been told the safety and security of all Indians are of prime importance.

Speaking in the Rajya Sabha, Prasad said: "On September 5, WhatsApp wrote to the Computer Emergency Response Team (CERT-In) providing an update to the security incident reported in May 2019, stating that while the full extent of this attack might never be known, WhatsApp continues to review the available information."

He also stated that CERT-In has sent a notice to the NSO Group, the developing company of the spyware Pegasus, seeking details about the spyware and its impact on Indian users.

Prasad also said that based on the WhatsApp data available, they believe that that the attackers may have attempted to reach the devices of approximately 121 users in India.

He further advised the digital players to establish proper security walls to ensure the safety and security of Indian citizens.

"Digital players, both Indian and foreign are welcome to contribute to the growing digital market but they must understand that the safety and security of Indians are of prime importance. They must erect appropriate security walls to ensure this or appropriate action will be taken," he said.

WhatsApp had earlier this month revealed that journalists and activists in India have been the target of surveillance by operators using the Israeli spyware Pegasus, according to reports.

The Facebook-owned messaging company stated that it remains committed to protecting all messages of its users, while the opposition parties accused the Centre of "snooping" on journalists and activists.

Amid the raging controversy, the Central government has asked WhatsApp to come out with an explanation of the breach of privacy and list out measures that have been taken to safeguard the privacy of millions of Indians. (ANI)