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Bharat Panchal Awarded for Excellence in Cyber Risk Management at FutureCrime Summit 2024

Bharat Panchal honored at FutureCrime Summit 2024 for leading cyber risk management, transforming India’s digital security landscape



Bharat Panchal Awarded for Excellence in Cyber Risk Management at FutureCrime Summit 2024

In an era where digital threats loom larger than ever, the FutureCrime Summit 2024, held on February 8-9 in New Delhi, recognized the efforts of individuals and organizations working tirelessly to secure the digital frontier. Among the distinguished honorees was Bharat Panchal, Discover Financial Services’ Chief Industry Relations & Regulatory Officer for India, who was awarded the prestigious Excellence in Cyber Risk Management recognition.

A Pioneer in Digital Risk Management

Bharat Panchal has emerged as a cornerstone in the cybersecurity landscape of India, having played a pivotal role in architecting the digital risk management and cybersecurity framework for the nation’s entire retail payment ecosystem. His contributions to the development of secure environments for RuPay, IMPS, FasTag, and the globally acclaimed Unified Payments Interface (UPI) at the National Payments Corporation of India (NPCI) have been instrumental in modernizing India’s payment systems.

Panchal’s innovative approach to risk oversight and cybersecurity has not only minimized technological risks but also enhanced the competitive edge of India’s payment solutions. His vision and leadership in ensuring compliance with applicable laws and regulations have set new standards in the industry.

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A Journey of Excellence and Leadership

Before his tenure at Discover Financial Services, Panchal served as the Chief Risk Officer for APAC, Middle East, and Africa with FIS Global, a Fortune 300 company recognized as the world’s leading fintech. His expertise ensured top-notch risk management and security compliance for customers across these regions. However, it was his role as the Chief of Risk Management at NPCI that marked a significant chapter in his career. Over 8.5 years, Panchal was instrumental in fostering a culture of risk management, designing, implementing, and monitoring risk controls across NPCI’s ecosystem.

His work on data localization, in collaboration with the Reserve Bank of India (RBI) in 2018, underscored the importance of securing banking data within national borders, setting a precedent for foreign entities connected with NPCI to comply with these standards.

Education, Experience, and Recognition

With an MBA in Information Systems, Panchal brings over 28 years of rich experience in risk management, primarily in the banking and telecommunication sectors. His journey before NPCI included significant roles at Kotak Mahindra Bank, Citibank, Reliance Communications, and Tata Telecom.

ALSO READ: Excellence in Cyber Strategy Awarded to Dr JM Vyas at FutureCrime Summit 2024

Panchal’s insights on risk management, data sovereignty, and cybersecurity have made him a sought-after speaker worldwide, with participation in over 400 conferences in India and 50+ international stages. His accolades include the “Security Leader of the Year” Award by the Data Security Council of India (DSCI) in 2014 and 2017, and the “Best CRO of the Year” by the Computer Society of India in 2016.

FutureCrime Summit 2024: A Melting Pot of Cybersecurity Minds

The FutureCrime Summit 2024, co-organized by the Future Crime Research Foundation (FCRF) and IIT Kanpur’s AIIDE Centre of Excellence, showcased the collaborative spirit of the cybersecurity community. The summit not only honored pioneers like Bharat Panchal but also set the stage for innovative discussions on combating cyber threats and digital crimes, marking a significant milestone in the global fight against cybercrime.


Excellence in CYBER INITIATIVE Odisha Police
Excellence in CYBER LAW ENFORCEMENT Special Task Force (STF), UP Police
Excellence in CYBER POLICING Ankush Mishra, DSP, Uttarakhand Police
Excellence in CYBER STRATEGY Dr. J.M. Vyas, VC, National Forensic Sciences University (NFSU)
Dr. Gulshan Rai, Former NCSC
Dinesh O Bareja, COO – Open Security Alliance
Excellence in CYBER RISK MANAGEMENT Bharat Panchal, Discover Financial Services
Akshay Garkel, Partner & Leader – Cyber at Grant Thornton Bharat LLP
Excellence in CYBER LAW PRACTICE Dr. Karnika Seth, Advocate, Supreme Court of India
Excellence in ARTIFICIAL INTELLIGENCE RESEARCH AIIDE Centre of Excellence, Noida
Excellence in CYBER CAPACITY BUILDING K. Venkatesh Murthy, Senior Director, DSCI
Moin Shaikh, Sales Director – India, TRINEXIA
Excellence in FORENSIC HARDWARE DEVELOPMENT eSec Forte Technologies
Excellence in CYBER RISK MITIGATION Smith Gonsalves, Director at CyberSmithSECURE
Excellence in FUTURECRIME RESEARCH Risheek Kumar, Founder, Hackers Pathshala
Saumay Srivastava, Threat Intelligence Researcher, OSINT Analyst
Abhirup Guha, Associate VP, TransAsia Soft Tech (INSURTECH)
Excellence in Ethical Hacking Naveen Singh
Excellence in ONLINE CHILD SAFETY PROGRAM Kaushalya World School
Excellence in CYBER FORENSIC RESEARCH IIMT Group of Colleges


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