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Current Affairs 10 February 2022

CONTENTS:

  1. ISRO to launch new satellite
  2. Experts stress on awareness for a safer digital economy
  3. India bans drone import to help domestic sector
  4. Quad is not a security alliance, says Blinken

ISRO to Launch New Satellite


Context:

The Indian Space Research Organisation (ISRO) is all set for its first launch of 2022 on next week.

Relevance:

GS III: Space Technology, Achievements of Indians in Science & Technology

Dimensions of the Article:

  1. Earth Observation Satellite (EOS-04)
  2. Recent Achievements of ISRO
  3. About Indian Space Research Organisation (ISRO)

Earth Observation Satellite (EOS-04):

  • The Indian Space Research Organisation (ISRO) plans to place an Earth Observation Satellite (EOS-04) into orbit on February 14.
  • Launch Vehicle: It will be launched by PSLV C-52 launch vehicle from the first launch pad of the Satish Dhawan Space Centre at Sriharikota.
  • Weight: Its weight is around 1,170 kg.
  • Orbit: It will be placed in a sun synchronous polar orbit of 529 km away from earth.
  • Feature: It is a radar-imaging satellite, designed to provide high-quality images under all weather conditions.
  • Applications: It includes:
    • Agriculture,
    • Forestry & plantations,
    • Soil moisture and hydrology, and
    • Flood mapping
  • PSLV-C52 mission: The mission will also carry two small satellites as co-passengers namely:
    • INSPIREsat-1: It is a student satellite from the Indian Institute of Space Science & Technology in association with the Laboratory of Atmospheric & Space Physics at the University of Colorado, Boulder and
    • INS-2TD: It is a technology demonstrator satellite from ISRO.

Recent Achievements of ISRO:

  • Amazonia-1:
    • It is the first dedicated commercial mission of NewSpace India Limited (NSIL), a Government of India company under Department of Space.
    • It was launched by PSLV-C51 in 2021.
    • It is a optical earth observation satellite of National Institute for Space Research (INPE), would provide remote sensing data to users for monitoring deforestation in the Amazon region and analysis of diversified agriculture across the Brazilian territory.
  • UNITYsat and Satish Dhawan SAT (SDSAT):
    • The PSLV-C51 launch vehicle successfully launched Indian student satellites UNITYsat and Satish Dhawan SAT (SDSAT) on February 28, 2021.
    • UNITYsat: It is intended for providing Radio relay services
    • SDSAT: It is a nano satellite intended to study the radiation levels/space weather and demonstrate long range communication technologies.
  • CMS-01 Mission:
    • It is India’s communication satellite was launched by PSLV-C50 in 2020.
    • It was injected into an elliptical sub-Geosynchronous Transfer Orbit.
    • It is envisaged for providing services in extended C Band frequency spectrum.

About Indian Space Research Organisation (ISRO):

  • Indian National Committee for Space Research (INCOSPAR) was set up by the Government of India in 1962.
  • Indian Space Research Organisation, formed in 1969, superseded the erstwhile INCOSPAR.
  • Vikram Sarabhai played a significant role in identifying the role and importance of space technology in a Nation’s development.
  • It aims to Harness space technology for national development, while pursuing space science research and planetary exploration.
  • Recently, S. Somanath, an eminent rocket scientist has been appointed as the Chairman of the Indian Space Research Organisation (ISRO) and the Space Secretary.

-Source: The Hindu


Experts Stress On Awareness For a Safer Digital Economy


Context:

During a webinar organised by The Hindu and Fortuner, a cybersecurity company, panellists stressed the significance of personal and organisational online security.

Relevance:

GS III: Cyber Security, Challenges to Internal Security Through Communication Networks

Dimensions of the Article:

  1. Cyber Attack and Cyber Security
  2. Suggestions by experts on Cybersecurity
  3. Significant development in Digital Payment security
  4. Way Forward

Cyber Attack and Cyber Security:

  • Cyber Attack: A cyberattackis a malicious and deliberate attempt by an individual or organization to breach the information system of another individual or organization.
  • Usually, the attacker seeks some type of benefit from disrupting the victim’s network.
  • Common types of cyber attacks: 
    • Malware,
    • Phishing, 
    • Man-in-the-middle attack ,
    • Denial-of-service attack ,
    • SQL injection ,
    • Zero-day exploit ,
    • DNS Tunneling and so on.
  • Cyber security: It is the application of technologies, processes and controls to protect systems, networks, programs, devices and data from cyber attacks.
  • Indian Computer Emergency Response Team (CERT-In):
    • It is the national nodal agency for responding to computer security incidents as and when they occur. 
    • CERT-In was established in 2004 as a functional organization of the Ministry of Electronics and Information Technology.
Current Affairs 10 February 2022

Suggestions by experts on Cybersecurity:

  • They stressed on the need for Internet users to train themselves on the best practices of cybersecurity and follow dos and don’ts to ensure a safe digital economy.
  • They reiterated that user awareness would help with digital transformations in future.
  • An improved awareness about the use of technology with responsibility, can enhance internet safety.
  • There is a need for the organizations to train users on how to access data or how to use the network. Certain methods that organizations should often follow include:
    • Training on authentication,
    • Forcing users to change passwords often and
    • Sending alerts before opening a link and so on.
  • Compliance and security risk assessment are the important requirements to move forward.
  • Users need to be well informed about security authentication methods like two factor authorisation and accessing an encrypted website.

Significant development in Digital Payment security:

  • The guideline on digital payment security has undergone a massive transformation.
  • These rules not only secure the payment transactions or applications used, but also the point of sale devices, having proper encryption, decryption mechanisms on your point of sales devices and ATMs.

Way Forward:

  • Cyber Insurance that is recently coming up in the financial services industry should be stressed to ensure  reasonable coverage for people falling prey to these tactics.
  • Awareness before and during the onboarding of customers must happen.
  • However, it is the law enforcement agencies that play a significant role in minimise Cyber crimes.
  • A cohesive effort is needed to contain these frauds.

-Source: The Hindu


India Bans Drone Import To Help Domestic Sector


Context:

Recently the Government of India banned the import of Drones with immediate effect, except for research and development, defence and security purposes.

Relevance:

GS II: Government Policies & Interventions, GS II: Defence Technology

Dimensions of the Article:

  1. Reason for prohibition of drones for import?
  2. What is a Drone?
  3. Recent initiatives by the Government

Reason for prohibition of drones for import?

  • The move is aimed at giving a boost to domestic manufacturing of drones, which is seen as a sector that is set to witness rapid growth this decade.
  • Thought exceptions were provided for R&D, defence and security, importing drones for these purposes will require “due clearances”.
  • Drone Components:
    • Import of drone components are exempted from the need for approvals as it seeks to boost domestic manufacturing of drones.
  • According to BIS Research, India’s drone market is estimated to account for about 4.25 per cent of the global drone market worth about $28.5 billion in FY22.
  • Import of drones are allowed for?
    • Government entities, educational institutions and government recognised R&D entities will be allowed to import drones

What is a Drone?

  • A Drone is an unmanned aircraft.
  • It is formally known as unmanned aerial vehicles (UAVs) or unmanned aircraft systems.
  • It is essentially a flying robot that can be remotely controlled or fly autonomously using software-controlled flight plans in its embedded systems, that work in conjunction with onboard sensors and a global positioning system (GPS).
  • UAVs are often used in Military purposes but now it finds huge application in range of civilian roles.
  • They were initially used for anti-aircraft target practice, intelligence gathering and, more controversially, as weapons platforms.
  • Applications of Drones:
    • search and rescue
    • surveillance
    • traffic monitoring
    • weather monitoring
    • fire-fighting
    • personal use
    • drone-based photography
    • videography
    • agriculture
    • delivery services
Current Affairs 10 February 2022

Recent initiatives by the Government:

  • Easing rules: The import ban follows a move by the government to ease rules around registration and operation of drones in India
    • The new Drone Rules, 2021 : The Ministry of Civil Aviation has liberalised drone rules last year with the aim to encourage R&D and to make India a drone hub.
      • It has reduced both compliances and fees required to operate drones.
  • Production-linked incentive (PLI) scheme : The government also approved a production-linked incentive (PLI) scheme for drones and their components with an allocation of ₹120 crore for three financial years.
    • The government has estimated that the PLI scheme for drones would generate investment of over Rs 5,000 crore and 10,000 direct jobs in India’s drone manufacturing sector till FY24.
    • The PLI scheme is also expected to boost the total turnover of the domestic industry to Rs 900 crore in FY24 up from an estimated Rs 60 crore in FY21.
  • Airspace map of India:
    • It was launched by the Ministry of Civil Aviation on the Directorate General of Civil Aviation’s (DGCA) digital sky platform
    • It demarcates the areas where drones can be used without permission and areas in which drone operators cannot operate drones without obtaining prior permission from government authorities.

-Source: The Hindu & The Indian Express


Quad is Not a Security Alliance, Says Blinken


Context:

The U.S. has reiterated that the Quad is not a security alliance. The statement was made in the backdrop of QUAD minister-level meeting of to be held in Australia on February 11.

Relevance:

GS II: Groupings & Agreements Involving India and/or Affecting India’s Interests

Dimensions of the Article:

  1. Quadrilateral Security Dialogue (QUAD):
  2. Purpose of Quad
  3. Significance of Quad
  4. What will be Quad’s Agenda?

Quadrilateral Security Dialogue (QUAD):

  • The Quad is an informal strategic forum comprising four nations, namely –India, United States of America, Australia and Japan.
  • One of the primary objectives of the Quad is, to work for a free, open, prosperous and inclusive Indo-Pacific region.
  • The group for the first time met in 2007 on the side lines of the Association of Southeast Asian Nations (ASEAN).
  • It is considered an alliance of maritime democracies.
  • The forum is maintained through meetings, semi-regular summits, information exchanges, and military drills of all the member countries.
  • The motive behind the Quad is, to keep the strategic sea routes in the Indo-Pacific, free of any military or political influence.
  • The core objective of the Quad is, to secure a rules-based global order, freedom of navigation and, a liberal trading system.
  • The coalition also aims to offer, alternative debt financing for nations in the Indo-Pacific region.

Purpose of Quad:

  • Recently the U.S. has clarified that Quad is not a security or military partnership.
  • Its purpose is to advance cooperation on key priorities in specific sectors that is consistent with international law
  • It promotes shared values of its members and underpins peace and stability in the Indo-Pacific region.
  • A U.S. State Department spokesperson said that “We work to support the rule of law, freedom of navigation and overflight, peaceful resolution of disputes, democratic values, and territorial integrity through open dialogue and information sharing on a diverse set of issue areas, including Maritime Security”.

Significance of Quad:

  • Quad is becoming a powerful mechanism and its significance is given below:
    • Helping to vaccinate a big part of the world and getting a lot of vaccines out there,
    • Strengthening maritime security to push back against aggression and coercion in the Indo-Pacific region,
    • Working together on emerging technologies and making sure that they can be used in positive ways and an increasingly broad and deep agenda.
    • It also supports many activities/platforms as part of its shared approach to the Indo-Pacific.

What will be Quad’s Agenda?

  • China’s challenges to the “rules based order” and democratic values will feature in the Quad’s agenda.
  • Chinese expansion in South China Sea when the world aims to stop the pandemic.
  • The meet is also important as tensions rise between the US and its allies and Russia rises due to the Ukraine issue.

-Source: The Hindu


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