IT Minister Syed Amin Ul Haque inaugurates Public Key Infrastructure for National Root Certification Authority .

Federal Minister for IT and Telecommunication Syed Amin Ul Haque inaugurated Public Key Infrastructure (PKI) for National Root Certification Authority here on Wednesday. Addressing the ceremony Federal Minister for IT Syed Amin Ul Haque said: “Electronic Certification Accreditation Council (ECAC) has established Public Key Infrastructure (PKI) for National Root Certification Authority for the government, public and private sector entities. It will be the first National Root Certification Authority to establish trust and security in electronic transactions/communications in the Country. It will be globally recognized through WebTrust audit and highly secured PKI setup for accreditation of Certification Service Providers (CSPs).”
He said the establishment of the National Root Certification Authority is a step towards the achievement of “Accelerated Digitization”. “It’s a historic occasion for the #ECAC and Government of Pakistan for achieving this milestone which was committed by the Government.” The Minister further said that Pakistan has witnessed a dynamic revolution in the sphere of e-commerce and e-governance. The use of Digital Signatures in Pakistan is unpredictable as it was unregulated due to the non-existence of the National Root Certification Authority, the monopolistic existence of the Certification Authority in the private sector and the lack of enforceability and implementation in the public sector by the appropriate authorities. However, there is enormous use of digital signatures in Public & Private Sectors in digital contract signing, web hosting, E-mails, E-voting of intermediaries, E-filing and E-office services etc.
Syed Amin Ul Haque said: “Internationally, PKI and overall Information Security is a multi-billion-dollar industry. Pakistan has the potential in the form of its youth to participate in this market and prove its mettle. It will improve Pakistan’s economy; presently the rights of digital certificate consumers are not sufficiently protected.
It is worth noting that currently, all the certificates used to secure these services within Pakistan are imported certificates either from Foreign Certification Service Providers like VeriSign, DigiCert, Entrust or Go Daddy etc. or through their partners/resellers in Pakistan which is a burden on foreign reserves of the Country besides security issues e.g. about 116 thousand websites and 1280 email servers registered with PKNIC making the import of only SSL certificates for these websites and mail servers worth hundreds of millions Rupees. He emphasized the role of ECAC’s PKI will address all these issues.
He said rapid growth and adoption of digital technologies in all sectors of the economy are inevitable for the development of the country. As Pakistan embarks on its journey towards becoming a truly digital economy, the establishment of the regulatory framework for ensuring data protection, establishing trust, and maintaining the security of all digital transactions, documents and systems are thus essential, he said. He said ECAC with the support of MoITT has deployed Pakistan’s National Root Certification Authority based on PKI that will act as a backbone for the digital economy of the country.
Syed Amin Ul Haque said steps are underway for the provision of telecom services in unserved and underserved areas of the country, adding that work on 70 projects worth Rs 65 billion is going on for providing broadband services in far-flung areas of the country. He said steps are also being taken to increase IT exports. He also vowed to resolve all the issues of the telecom industry.
Federal Minister for IT said Google is soon going to open its office in Pakistan. While addressing the Additional Secretary (Incharge) Ministry of IT Mohsin Mushtaq “Congratulated and appreciated the continuous efforts of the Certification Council and its officers in establishing Pakistan’s first WebTrust Audited National Root Certification Authority.
He said Pakistan is in the process of Socio-Economic digitization in all sectors including e-Health, e-Commerce, e-Justice, e-Agriculture, e-Energy, e-Education and FinTech. Speaking at the occasion, Chairman ECAC Engr. Mairaj Gul apprised the audience that under the dynamic leadership of Federal Minister Syed Amin Ul Haq and Federal Secretary, ECAC has accomplished this task to provide an anchor for trust and security in the digital environment of Pakistan.
Chairman ECAC also highlighted the initiatives taken by the Honourable Minister Syed Amin ul Haque in the IT & Telecom sector during his period.
The inauguration was concluded by the distribution of the appreciation shields to Officers who worked devotedly for the establishment of this National Root Certification Authority.
Senior officials of Federal and provincial governments and ICT professionals attended the inauguration ceremony from the public/private sector and CEOs of Fintech & Telecom companies.
Government of Pakistan
Pakistan Software Houses Association