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India has challenged its residents to develop an indigenous web browser with the feature of signing documents digitally through crypto tokens.
In its press release of August 9, 2023, the Indian Ministry of Electronics & Information Technology (MeitY) announced the launch of the Indian Web Browser Development Challenge (IWBDC).
“The IWBDC is an Open Challenge Competition that seeks to inspire and empower technology enthusiasts, innovators, and developers from all corners of the country to create an indigenous web browser with its own trust store with an inbuilt CCA India root certificate, cutting edge functionalities and enhanced security & data privacy protection features,” reads the statement.
One of the key features that’s expected to be supported by the browser is the digital signing of documents through a crypto token, with the aim to enhance the security of transactions and digital engagements.
The release of the India’s native multifunctional web browser will mark a significant step towards “Aatmanirbhar Bharat” (translates to “self-reliant India”), Prime Minister Modi’s plan to make the country more independent, technologically and economically .
“Digital India has revolutionized how our nation functions, empowering citizens, boosting the economy and enhancing overall governance. As we move forward, embracing technology and promoting indigenous innovation will be pivotal in realizing the vision of a self-reliant, digitally empowered India,” said Smt Sunita Verma, Scientist G & GC (R&D in Electronics & IT).
The Indian Controller of Certifying Authorities (CCA), Shri Arvind Kumar, strives to ensure the security of digital certificates issued within the country and contributes to developing a robust Public Key Infrastructure (PKI) framework that would enable secure electronic transactions throughout the nation.
However, India has been reliant on the Secure Sockets Layer (SSL) certificates issued by foreign entities’ roots. Now, the challenge is to integrate India Root Certificate into the upcoming national browser, thus addressing the issue and making the country more “Internet Resilient”.
Who Can Participate in the Challenge?
All of the country’s creative minds, including academia, industry, start-ups, or individuals, are encouraged to take part in the challenge and submit an idea for the innovative Indian web browser that could cater to a global audience.
The challenge will consist of three rounds: 18 participants will be selected in the first round, shortlisted to 8 in the second one, with only 3 coming to the final round. The winner will be granted 34 million Indian rupees (around $411,000) and will receive additional support in further development of the new browser.
Disclaimer: This article is provided for informational purposes only. It is not offered or intended to be used as legal, tax, investment, financial, or other advice.