Bridging the Digital Divide

Dr Ravi Gupta
Dr Ravi Gupta, Editor-in-Chief, digitalLEARNING magazine and Founder Publisher and CEO, Elets Technomedia Pvt Ltd

ravi-gupta-featureThe Digital India initiative flagged off by Prime Minister Narendra Modi recently aims to make citizens digitally literate and transform India into digitally empowered economy. A secure digital nation is capable of advancing economic prosperity. But a keen eye on educating the citizens on cyber security is the need of the hour.

Digital India is a transformative programme, which will increase the adoption of ICT and will empower citizens through equitable access to ICT infrastructure. The programme will bring huge opportunities for the education sector, where ICT penetration is already playing a vital role. With Bring Your Own Device (BYOD) technology gaining momentum in the education world, it is obvious to make users aware of the threats prone to technology. Our nation’s growing dependence on cyberspace is evident today. From smartphones to online banking, from e-governance to m-governance, electronic attendance record, social networking, all talks about the progressive India. The need for a secure and safe environment has never been important.

While the biggest push for the Digital India initiative is towards inclusive growth in all sectors, but what is required is to strategies plans to tackle the threats associated with the cyber crimes. Industry estimates that number of cybercrimes in India is around 1,49,254 and is likely to cross 3,00,000 in 2015 growing at compounded annual growth rate (CAGR) of 107 percent.

Raising the concerns on the growing epidemic of cyber crime in the educational world, we have highlighted the experts, educationists and psychologists opinions on the growing need of training and counselling students on cybercrimes.

In the midst of all, there is another disturbing truth negatively influencing India as an educational hub. Where the Prime Minister envisioned ‘Digital India’ as an ambitious umbrella programme to transform India into a digitally empowered knowledge society, the real truth lies in the negative influence of the technology in hand. In the past one year, about a dozen major question paper leaks have been reported affecting lakhs of students across India. This has compelled the academicians to opine that cheating in India has long gone beyond personal ethics and become institutionalised, enhanced by the use of technology.

Amidst the entire negative picture, the issue has put forth a breather on how technology is being used for a very positive development that involves fee management through the online mode and how anti-virus and network security plays a crucial role in safeguarding the educational institutions interest.

The issue highlights the burning issues of technology advancement and how it can be controlled through implementing the right solutions and drive plans to shape up the digital future.

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