Prime Minister seeks report on installation of Indian solution to e-cabinet system

ISLAMABAD: Taking note of a news item published in daily Pakistan Today, Prime Minister Shehbaz Sharif has directed the Ministry of Information Technology and Telecom to furnish a report on the installation of the Indian company solution, Mobile Device Management (MDM), in the tablets given to federal cabinet members.
Highly placed sources told Pakistan Today that Prime Minister, despite having been on a foreign visit, directed the Ministry of IT&T and the cabinet division to submit a report immediately on revalidation of the e-cabinet system to curb data leakage, if any.
Earlier, Pakistan Today on Wednesday reported that the sensitive data of the country’s highest decision-making forum, the Federal Cabinet, is at risk as the launching of MDM software to run the portal of the E-Cabinet.
The Government of Pakistan had imposed a ban on Indian developed products, however, in this case, the NITB reportedly showed negligence and purchased MDM solutions from the Indian firm despite a solution similar to this product already available in the global market.
The Indian company software being used for e-cabinet system since April, 2021.
Moreover, NITB does not even have credentials to buy an annual subscription to the allegedly Indian Software. The rights to renew the annual subscription or change credentials are with a former employee of NITB who was a third-party HR resource who left the service in August 2021.
It is pertinent to note that the Cabinet’s portal is used only for the submission of summaries to the Cabinet Members.
Sources said that Ministry IT&T initially found the platform credentials satisfactory after the re-validation the e-cabinet system.
Previously, NTISB, an attached department of the cabinet division has also audited the e-cabinet software platform but there is also a dire need for a complete independent third-party audit of this MDM solution to revalidate no possibility of backdoor in the system if not replaced.
Sources said that hackers on daily basis are making attempts to hack government websites and recently, they managed to hack the Ministry of commerce’s Export Development Fund (EDF) website, FBR and National Bank of Pakistan etc, source added.
Recently, SECP also succeed in downing the link of the website where the hackers made public confidential details of companies’ CEO and directors.
Sources said that the government of Pakistan is saving millions of rupees annually from this E-cabinet system however there is a need to further invest in information security keeping in view the emerging cyber security threats and to protect the sensitive data of the country’s highest forum.
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