Forbes India Daily Tech Brief Podcast

India offers $10 bln to chip makers; Tiger’s first startup deal in Pakistan has a woman founder; Log4J — the worst is yet to come

von Forbes India Daily Tech Brief Podcast | Vom 2021-12-17

India is offering a Rs. 76,000 crore ($10 billion) package to global semiconductor companies to create a comprehensive ecosystem for chip design, packaging and manufacturing, Economic Times reports. The funding, which will be provided over six years, is expected to bring in investments of up to Rs 1.7 lakh crore ($22 billion), India’s Minister for Electronics and Information Technology Ashwini Vaishnaw told ET. The minister hopes that India’s strong software and chip design ecosystem will attract global semiconductor companies. The government will not just provide infrastructure support, but also fast track clearances. Approvals are expected for a large chip manufacturing facility in the next four to six months, according to ET. Tiger Global is backing fintech startup CreditBook. It marks the New York-headquartered hedge fund and VC firm’s first investment in Pakistan, TechCrunch reports. Among two-year-old CreditBook’s founders is Imam Jamall, one of the few women founders in Pakistan. Other investors include Firstminute Capital, Banana Capital, VentureSouq, Ratio Ventures, i2i Ventures. Angel investors Sriram Krishnan and Julian Shapiro have also joined the $11 million pre-Series A round. The software vulnerability discovered last week in Log4J, a popular open-source library, could be one of the worst, Wired reports, citing cybersecurity experts. The combination of severity, simplicity, and pervasiveness of the Log4J library has the security community rattled, Wired says in its report. “It is by far the single biggest, most critical vulnerability ever,” Amit Yoran, CEO of cybersecurity firm Tenable and founding director of US-CERT—the organisation responsible for coordinating the public-private response to digital threats in the US—told Wired in an interview. Expect Log4J exploits, which have so far been limited to crypto miners and some malware, to escalate into the realms of serious ransomware attacks, the Wired warns. Facebook’s parent company Meta has alerted 50,000 users of Facebook and Instagram that their accounts were spied on by commercial “surveillance-for-hire” schemes around the globe, The Verge reports. The users, located in more than 100 countries, were targeted by seven entities, according to an update posted on Meta’s news page on Thursday. Targets included journalists, dissidents, critics of authoritarian regimes, families of opposition, and human rights activists. The surveillance was uncovered in a months-long investigation in which Meta identified spying groups and removed them from the platform. Spotify has acquired another podcast technology company, Whooshkaa, an Australia-based all-in-one platform for hosting, managing, distributing, promoting, monetising and measuring podcasts, the world’s largest music streaming company said in a blogpost. Whooshkaa offers radio broadcasters a specialised tool that makes it simple to turn their existing audio content into on-demand podcast content. Spotify plans to soon integrate this technology into its Megaphone suite. TranZact, a startup offering a SaaS-based digital transformation tool for SMEs has raised $7 million in Series A funding, the company said in a press release. The funding was led by San Francisco-based Tribe Capital with participation from Prime Venture Partners, Gemba Capital and existing investor Kae Capital. Several noted angel investors also participated.

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Every week day, Forbes India tech briefings will bring you essential tech news from around the world that has a bearing on India—covering everything from big tech to the subcontinent's growing tech startup ecosystem