Pakistan warns against Indian tech products due to security fears.
Recent cyberattacks spur government caution.
Ministries advised to consider local alternatives via P@SHA.
In a recent cyber security advisory, the Pakistan government has warned all IT and financial institutions, including regulators, to avoid using “Indian origin” AI/ICT products due to the potential for concealed threats to the country’s critical information infrastructure (CII).
The government cited two primary reasons for the warning: the possibility of backdoors or malware in Indian products that could be used to collect sensitive data, and the direct Indian ingress into Pakistan’s CII through technical means and access control.
The warning comes in the wake of several high-profile cyber attacks on Pakistan in recent years, including one in 2020 that targeted the devices of government and military officials.
The government has also advised all federal and provincial ministries to consult with the Pakistan Software House Association (P@SHA) to find Pakistani technical companies that can provide suitable and economical alternatives to Indian products.
The warning is a significant development in the ongoing tensions between Pakistan and India. It also highlights the growing importance of cyber security as countries increasingly rely on AI and ICT technologies.
The government’s warning is likely to have a significant impact on the Pakistani IT and financial sectors. Many Pakistani companies rely on Indian AI/ICT products, and finding suitable alternatives may be difficult and expensive.
The warning could also lead to increased tensions between Pakistan and India. India has a thriving IT industry, and the Pakistani government’s decision to ban Indian products is likely to be seen as a hostile act.
Overall, the government’s warning is a reminder of the growing importance of cyber security and the potential risks associated with using foreign technology products.
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