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Govt's China-style internet laws may expose citizens to more surveillance

It seeks to bend the industry to the government's will by imposing a license requirement on everything from Gmail to FaceTime and Skype

Photo: Bloomberg
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Photo: Bloomberg

Andy Mukherjee | Bloomberg
One of the laws under which India governs its communications industry dates back to 1885 — when Alexander Graham Bell’s invention of the telephone was not even a decade old. If the colonial-era Indian Telegraph Act is hopelessly anachronistic, its proposed replacement may also be problematic: The telecom bill wants to retain sweeping powers of state surveillance, and apply them even to encrypted internet messages.  

If the draft law passes in the current form, citizens of the world’s largest democracy will lose a further corner of what’s already a fast-shrinking space for privacy and free speech. Activists, dissidents and whistleblowers

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First Published: Sep 30 2022 | 7:20 AM IST

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