Congress slams Centre over alleged data breach of Covid vaccine beneficiaries

New Delhi |Thursday, 2023 1:44:45 PM IST
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Congress on Tuesday once again attacked Centre over the alleged data breach of the Covid vaccine beneficiaries saying the Narendra Modi government does not care about the fundamental right to privacy of people, and national security.

Hitting out at the government, Congress president Mallikarjun Kharge said, "No matter how much an irresponsible Modi government covers up the CoWIN Data Leak, three things are clear - public's personal data is not secure."

"Every Indian knows how in 2017 the Modi government strongly opposed the Supreme Court declaring Right to Privacy as a Fundamental Right," Kharge said, adding that even cyber attacks and data leaks have continuously increased in the country.

"Then whether it is the 'world's biggest' AADHAAR data breach of 2018 or the November 2022 cyber attack on AIIMS.

"Significantly, the Modi government had told the Supreme Court in September 2018 that AADHAAR data is protected in 13 feet high and five feet thick walls. Cyber attacks have increased many folds during the tenure of Modi government which is beating the drum of Digital India, which are as follows: In 2018, 2.08 lakh, in 2019, 3.94 lakh, in 2020 11.58 lakh, in 2021 14.02 lakh, and in 2022 13.91 lakh as per the government reply in Rajya Sabha on February 2, 2023," he said.

The Congress president said, "Overall the situation is clear. Neither the Modi government cares about the fundamental right to privacy of 140 crore people, nor does it care about national security. Data Privacy Law has not been made and no National Security Policy has been implemented on Cyber Attacks."

Even Congress general secretary Randeep Singh Surjewala slammed the government and said, "The 'data' of the entire country (100 crore people) has been stolen and lice are not crawling on the ears of the Modi government. The BJP government engaged in spying on the people of its own country. Between 2018 and 2022, there have been more than 45 lakh cyber attack incidents. The Modi government, which hides its responsibility by saying 'no data' every time, putting the privacy and security of crores of countrymen at risk, is it running the 'Go Data' campaign?"

The remarks of the Congress leaders comes a day after it was alleged that the data of the Covid vaccine beneficiaries were leaked through Telegram bot.

However, the Union Ministry of Health and Family Welfare (MoHFW) on Monday dubbed the alleged data breach of Covid-19 vaccine beneficiaries "mischievous in nature", saying that the CoWIN portal is completely safe with adequate safeguards for data privacy.

The Health Ministry also said that it has requested the Indian Computer Emergency Response Team (CERT-In) to look into this issue and submit a report, besides initiating an internal exercise to review the existing security measures of CoWIN.

--IANS aks/shb/

( 475 Words)

2023-06-13-14:32:02 (IANS)