DoT asks Idea, Vodafone to give internet users’ info

The telecom department has asked Vodafone and Idea to provide Intelligence Bureau (IB) the details of subscribers who were using internet on the mobile.

The telecom department has asked all the operators to put in place a suitable mechanism that would allow the security agencies to uniquely identify the individual user.

However, when contacted both the Vodafone and Idea said that they have not received any notice from the telecom department till now.

The IB department had provided the IP addresses to Vodafone but the telecom operator failed to respond, said senior officials in the telecom department.

Earlier enhancing the capability of security agencies to tape phone calls, the telecom department had amended the licence making it mandatory for the telecom companies to provide call interception facilities for at least 480 calls at any given time to security agencies.

“Presently, the licensee should ensure suitable redundancy in the complete chain of monitoring equipment for trouble free operations of monitoring of atleast 480 simultaneous call as per requirement with atleast 30 simultaneous calls for each of the designated security/ law enforcement agencies,” the amended provisions of the licence agreement said.

There are nine agencies including CBI, IB and the I-T department whose officials can tape phone calls. Previously the telecom operators had to provide facilities for monitoring of 210 simultaneous calls.

Canada based makers of BlackBerry, Research In Motion (RIM) has recently set up servers in Mumbai for monitoring of communication which happens using its services. The security agencies fear that the highly encrypted emails sent through the smart phones make them convenient for terrorists.

Nokia has also agreed to put a server in India to let the security agencies monitor consumer email services.

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