People’s trust that they and their families, their information, and their money is safe and secure is at the heart of their ability to confidently navigate the web. That is why, at Google, safety is not just a check-box – it is the very foundation on which we have built our platforms and products, enabling us to keep more people safe online than anyone else in the world with products that are secure by default, private by design and put our users in control.
As India’s extraordinary embrace of digital opens up new pathways to information, knowledge, and opportunity for millions of people, placing the country on a trajectory towards becoming a digital economy, our belief is that building a safer internet for everyone is not one more thing to do, it is the one thing to do. That is why, we've continuously stepped up our commitment to online safety over time.
Today, we are taking several more steps to support our mission to make the internet helpful and safer for a billion Indians.
We’re prioritizing cybersecurity skilling, investing in user awareness, and supporting local community organizations to reach digital safety training and resources for high-risk internet users in languages they prefer. In addition, our ~20,000 people global Trust & Safety organization continues to strengthen defenses against some of the most prevalent frauds, enhancing information quality across our products and services, and integrating new safety features on our products.
Each of these efforts is underscored by a collaborative approach to internet safety across rapidly digitizing sectors and industries, and we’re pleased to take the lead and join hands with the Government, the industry, and nonprofits to bolster these initiatives.
Shri Abhishek Singh, President & CEO, NeGD and MyGov, MD & CEO, Digital India Corporation: “A cybersecure India is vital to achieve the transformational vision of Digital India – empowering every section of society and strengthening the country’s global stature as a nation, fast becoming a knowledge economy. As more and more citizens become included into the digital economy and derive the benefit of direct access to payments and transfer which are crucial to their progress and prosperity, we have been consciously creating infrastructure, capabilities, and programs that protect our citizens and our country from cyber threats. Investing in building a nation-wide consciousness among citizens on cybersafety has been a key aspect of our efforts and we are very pleased that Google has collaborated with us on several of these initiatives. We are happy to strengthen our collaboration by supporting the new and timely efforts being launched today and look forward to their continued contribution to create a Cybersafe India."
Cyber skilling roadshow to reach ~100,000 participants
We are flagging off a multi-city, mixed-format Cybersecurity Roadshow for startups, developers, and IT professionals. Through these experiential interactions, we will share unique tools, detailed guidance, and best practices with approximately 100,000 participants, enabling them to build safer apps by embedding security in all phases of development, and help them adopt modern IT practices.
To support this outreach, a foundational cybersecurity curriculum will now be integrated into the annual DevFest covering approximately 15,000 developers, and within the Android & Cloud Series for Startups and many other programs. To sign up, click here.
A multilingual awareness campaign for safe transactions
User awareness is one of the most effective weapons against digital fraud. We are embarking on a collaboration with some of India’s industry leaders, where – together with MEITY and Digital India – we will roll out a pan-India, multilingual user awareness campaign with support from HDFC Bank, Axis Bank, Kotak Mahindra Bank, Airtel, SBI, and ICICI. The campaign encourages people to adopt basic precautions to stay ahead of the most common fraud and phishing techniques and attacks. Our campaign partners will further propagate awareness around these precautions using their own consumer channels such as websites, apps, SMS and ATMs.
Check out our campaign here.
$2 million Google.org grants to support nonprofit work in online safety outreach to high-risk communities
Online safety has offline impacts. Women, LGBTQIA+, and seniors are often easier targets for a range of bad actors, that dissuades them from being fully and equitably included into the opportunity of joining the workforce, launching a business, or simply accessing basic online services without the fear of fraud.
To provide these vulnerable communities with tailored resources and responsive support on online safety, Google.org is providing grant support to local nonprofits to launch outreach programs for these users in languages they prefer. The funding will enable Collective Good Foundation (CGF) to reach over 900,000 people with a specially-designed curriculum and set of content and resources in English and four Indian languages including Hindi, Bengali, Telugu, and Marathi.
Google.org will also provide grant support to nonprofit Point of View, to scale up TechSakhi – India’s first multi-lingual, omni-channel digital safety helpline for women and LGBTQIA+ internet users. The grant will enable the organization to create regional language content, pilot new outreach channels and enable more effective user education. TechSakhi will offer helpline support in four Indian languages including Hindi, Bengali, Marathi, and Tamil, across six states.
Senior citizens are frequently targeted by fraudsters, and so to help equip them with the knowledge and skills to stay safe in online interactions and transactions, Google.org is also making a grant to HelpAge India to provide training to 50,000 elderly on digital safety.
Google is also joining hands with Sheroes, a community platform for women, to offer a 10-part online safety video series for users. Presently available in English and Hindi, this on-demand curriculum will focus on the fundamentals of online safety such as password protection, avoiding suspicious emails and unsafe sites, and other ways to stay safe online.
A technology toolkit in the arsenal for keeping children safe online
With children growing up in a world steeped in technology, developing healthy internet habits can serve as a strong foundation to protecting them from the harmful side of the internet. Furthering our commitment to keeping children safe online, we have launched the ProtectingChildren.Google website in three Indian languages: Bengali, Hindi, and Tamil. We already equip qualifying partners free-of-charge with our child safety toolkit, which consists of the Content Safety API and CSAI Match – two tools that enable our partners to better fight abusive content. Our current global partners are already using these technologies to collectively process billions of files each year, allowing them to evaluate millions of images and videos for the presence of abuse. We hope that the launch of the site in Indian languages will invite collaboration with even more Indian NGOs and organizations who can register their interest here in Hindi, Bengali, and Tamil.
All of these efforts build on our long-standing commitment to narrow the digital divide across people in our society who are especially vulnerable, and only a concerted effort will shift the tide against fraudulent and harmful online activity.
Our work here is far from done, but every step each of us takes will count toward a safe and equitable online experience for all.