On 26th February 2021, the Data Security Council of India, in collaboration with Ashoka University, launched the ‘Coalition of India for a Progressive and Holistic Encryption Regime’ (CIPHER). CIPHER is a coalition of like-minded institutions and individuals committed to preserving privacy and promoting digital trust by leveraging cutting-edge cryptographic technologies.

CIPHER would strive towards building a nuanced understanding of encryption among policymakers; Identify and protect encryption-based technologies from thought prescriptions that may threaten the privacy of citizens and security of the country; assist policymakers in building optimal crypto-based solutions for improving governance in India and promoting the development of encryption-based technologies, nurturing India’s start-up ecosystem in this domain.

The event saw global representation from industry, academia, civil society organizations, and government. With eminent speakers such as Keri Pearlson, Executive Director, Cybersecurity, MIT Sloan, Santosh Misra, IAS, Chief Executive Officer, Tamil Nadu e-Governance Agency (TNeGA), and Yashovardhan Azad, Retired IPS Officer, Intelligence Bureau, among others.