India tells Google, Skype to open up servers

Dylan Bushell-Embling
02 Sep 2010

India has expanded its drive to bring foreign-operated data services under state security surveillance.

After forcing RIM to offer a technical fix to allow security agencies to read encrypted BlackBerry data, Home Secretary G.K. Pillai says Google and Skype will also have to install servers in India in order to continue operating in the country.

Pillai said is insisting that all service providers operating in India will have to comply with the rules on state surveillance, said. He plans to write to Skype and Google informing them of the ruling – but the onus on ensuring compliance will be placed on the telecom operators.

KPMG analyst Romal Shetty told the Journal that the move shows India is serious about monitoring all telecom-related companies operating in India.

Earlier this week RIM negotiated a 60-day reprieve to a threatened BlackBerry ban in India, by offering a solution that the home ministry said involved setting up a local server in India.

The DoT is currently authoring a report on the feasibility of providing services solely through an Indian server, which is expected to be complete within two months.

Nokia this week said it plans to install an Indian server for its messaging service by November.


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