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RBI online payment regulation; It will be cumbersome but worthwhile, says Deepak Talwar

The Reserve Bank of India’s (RBI’s) proposal to stop e-commerce platforms and online aggregators from storing credit card data is sensible because of the country’s weak cyber-security laws and preparedness, a top market analyst has said.

Seasoned market analyst Deepak Talwar said that the RBI decision will make transactions cumbersome because a person will have to enter card details every time but it is worth the effort.

“There are talks about China trying to bring our power systems down through cyberattacks and this should not be taken lightly. Cyber thieves are all over India and the nation’s rapidly digitising financial ecosystem is vulnerable,” he said.

Talwar also said that there have been reports that PayTM, Juspay, and Big Basket’s consumer databases were compromised by hackers. India’s vaccine suppliers also faced cyber threats. “Last year, when Indian and Chinese troops came face to face in Galwan Valley, more than 40,000 Chinese hacking attempts were reported.”

There have been disruptions in the National Stock Exchange and HDFC Bank’s frequent outages which forced the RBI to stop the bank from expanding HDFC Bank’s card business till all the glitches were fixed.

“NSE is where the bulk of India’s stock market and bond transactions take place. India needs to be supremely protective of the actual storehouses of India’s stock market. The government must dematerialise wealth — the National Securities Depository Ltd and Central Securities Depository Ltd,” said Talwar.

He said that India has reasons to be worried because Indian power systems use significant Chinese equipment. And telecom infrastructure and handsets are China-dominated. There are loads of chips used in various gadgets which are either made in China or Taiwan.

“So there is an extent of what many call digital vulnerabilities. India’s cyber-crime force needs to be hyperactive to bring cybercriminals to book,” said Deepak Talwar. “The RBI should be lauded because it has correctly decided that discretion is the better part of cyber valour,” he added.

With over three decades of experience, Deepak Talwar is a well-known face in the corporate world. A serial entrepreneur, he has founded some of the leading global firms in the field of corporate consultancy in India and abroad.

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