India will likely surpass the United Kingdom to become the second-most targeted country for payment card fraud this year, a research firm said, highlighting inadequate defense against cyber crime at financial institutions in the country.
Over 3.2 million Indian payment card records were compromised and posted for sale in 2018, taking the country to the third position in the world in card frauds, Gemini Advisory said in a blog post.
In an attempt to make India a cashless economy, Prime Minister Narendra Modi has been promoting the use of digital payments after replacing high-value currency notes to crack down on the black market economy.
But a rapidly growing middle class population opting to use cards for purchases and rising internet penetration make India an attractive target for cyber criminals, according to the report.
A combination of lucrative targets and insufficient defense measures make many Indian institutions attractive to hackers, the report said.
According to the Thales Data Threat Report, 52 percent of surveyed Indian companies reported a data breach in 2018, compared with a global average of 36 percent.
On the brighter side, 93 percent of surveyed Indian companies are increasing their security spending, the highest percentage that Thales found anywhere in the world.