C3iHub, IIT Kanpur launches Startup Cohorts to Drive Cybersecurity Innovation and Foster Entrepreneurship

● C3iHub, IIT Kanpur officially launched the Cohort of 19 startups under Startup Incubation Program

● The cohort would working across domains of Cyber Security, like Application Security Management, UAV Security, Security through AI enabled SAAS, Integrated SOC Solution, Cyber Forensics & Blockchain Technology

Bengaluru, 1 April, 2024: C3iHub, a National Technology Innovation Hub (TIH) for Advanced Cybersecurity at the Indian Institute of Technology Kanpur (IITK) today launched startup cohorts III, IV, and V at Hyatt Regency, New Delhi. Funded by the Department of Science and Technology (DST) under the NM-ICPS Mission, C3iHub presented 19 startups in the Startup Incubation Program, specializing in specific cybersecurity areas including Application Security, Integrated SOC Solution, Cyber Forensics, Blockchain Technology, UAV Security, IoT Security, and Cyber Insurance.

The event was graced by Dr. Abhay Karandikar, Secretary, DST; Lt. General M U Nair, National Cyber Security Coordinator; Shri Navin Kumar Singh, IPS, Director General NCIIPC; Dr. Akhilesh Gupta, Sr. Advisor, DST; and Dr. Ekta Kapoor, Mission Director, NM-ICPS, DST; Dr. Ajay Kumar, Former Defence Secretary of India; and Dr. Gulshan Rai, India’s first National Cyber Security Coordinator.

Under the flagship program of the Startup Incubation Program, C3iHub has provided support to fifty startups across five cohorts which are actively engaged in critical cybersecurity domains such as cyber forensics, application security, blockchain technology, deception technology, threat intelligence, and cyber insurance. Many of these startups have successfully launched and commercialized products, while several others are currently in the process of scaling up their operations.

C3iHub provides a seed grant of Rs 10 lakhs to incubated startups and offers a monthly salary of Rs 50,000 for one founder over two years, resulting in an initial investment of Rs 22 lakhs. The organization aims for at least a 20% success rate among startups after the two-year incubation period. As these startups mature, C3iHub facilitates connections with investors and corporations to aid them in raising capital, fostering the development of a resilient digital infrastructure for India.

Prof. Manindra Agrawal, Project Director C3iHub, while welcoming the august gathering said, “Today marks a significant milestone for C3iHub. With the launch of these start-ups, we have crossed fifty startups in cybersecurity incubated at C3iHub. It signifies the vibrant potential of our ecosystem to innovate and lead in the face of global cybersecurity.”

Dr. Abhay Karandikar, Secretary, DST said, “Among the 25 TIH’s in the country, I am delighted that the C3iHub has done exceptionally well. The hub, apart from developing an ecosystem for deep tech, is also working to build capacity in technically skilled manpower to meet not just present but also future needs in the area of cybersecurity. Going further, I urge C3iHub to take core tech further, bring together quantum tech and cybersecurity to prepare for the emergence of technologies such as AI. DST will also be happy to support IIT Kanpur in creating a Tech Park which will bring together start-ups in cybersecurity and sector champions to create a synergy between developers and end-users, and take it to a global scale.”

Lt. General M U Nair, National Cyber Security Coordinator shared his thoughts on the event, “Cyber space is the most exploited and we must ensure that our national security is protected from any possible attack. There is a need for a vibrant cybersecurity ecosystem that will prepare us to face not just present cybersecurity challenges but also future tech advancements. It is here that the cybersecurity startups promise to be the harbingers of change. My congratulations to the entire team of C3iHub in helping these startups with the support of its immense knowledge and experience.”

Shri Navin Kumar Singh, IPS, Director General NCIIPC said, “I am glad to see my alma mater take the lead in supporting cybersecurity startups. It is important to create an ecosystem where everyone who works in cyber physical systems can contribute to and the C3iHub has successfully achieved this. I wish the startups all the best.”

Dr. Ekta Kapoor, Mission Director, NM-ICPS, DST said, “Being the Mission Director, it fills me with great pleasure that C3iHub is launching 19 new cybersecurity start-ups today. Cybersecurity is an emerging field that holds significant importance in protecting indigenous technologies. Under the NMICPS, we have supported 25 Technology Innovation Hubs covering all aspects of cyber physical systems with the aim of developing and deploying technologies for the benefit of country, promote and support startups in their domains, and train the next generation of engineers.”

Dr. Bharat Panchal, Chief Industry Relations & Regulatory Officer – India, while explaining the cohort process said, “The selection of startups for the cohort is decided after carefully evaluating multiple parameters such as the uniqueness of the idea, the use case for the solution, and those aligning with the vision and the mission of the C3iHub hub etc. Led by a panel of experts of industry and academia, the funding and mentorship offered to the startups provides a foundation for them to build and grow.”

In the event, Prof. Sandeep Shukla, Co-Project Director, C3iHub talked about C3iHub’s achievements so far, and said, “As we celebrate the achievements of C3iHub so far, we are reminded of the journey that brought us here – a journey marked by persistent innovation, collaboration, and a shared commitment to excellence in cybersecurity. Let us continue to drive forward with the same spirit of innovation and collaboration.”

The TIH is deeply engaged in all facets of cybersecurity, from identifying vulnerabilities in critical cyberphysical systems to creating tools for mitigation. This involves supporting startups and collaborating with industries to commercialize these tools, alongside training the next wave of cybersecurity experts. C3iHub, meanwhile, concentrates on addressing cybersecurity challenges within cyber-physical systems such as critical infrastructures, automotive, and drones. Its scope encompasses various cybersecurity domains like network security, cryptography, intrusion detection, and deception technology. Startups under its umbrella focus on UAV security, blockchain, intrusion detection, and cyber-physical systems. C3iHub aims to develop security solutions for critical infrastructures while nurturing the growth of cybersecurity entrepreneurs.

In addition to hosting the Launch event, C3iHub presented an exhibition wherein several C3iHub developers as well as C3iHub top-performing startups displayed their technologies like Authentication, Deception Technology, Anti-Drone Technology, Cloud Security, Hardware Security, Blockchain Technology.

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