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Obey or Ban: India Wants to Monitor Blackberry, Google, and Skype Data

Looks like the iPhone may be the way to go in India. The country’s Department of Telecommunications has demanded that Research in Motion (RIM) and Skype format their communication data so they can be read by intelligence and security agencies. A similar notice has been served to Google India, asking that their Gmail content also be made readable. The companies have under two weeks to comply, or else face the possibility of a ban in India.

The Economic Times reports that senior officials of security agencies are worried about how these communication services could potentially compromise the country’s safety. India, which recently announced a partnership with Pakistan to fight terrorism, has been victim to recent bombings and other terrorist activity, including the 2008 Mumbai attacks which left at least 173 dead.

We thought this was over back in 2008, when RIM was served a similar notice threatening to halt Blackberry service if RIM did not allow Indian security agencies to access messages “whenever the need arise[d].” The increased need for cybersecurity is unsurprising though; on the other side of the globe, American citizens have the Internet Kill Switch looming over their heads.

According to Computerworld, Google India claims they have not received any order of this kind. RIM and Skype spokespeople have yet to comment on the story.

And wait, how about ICQ? I hear criminals use that.

(via MarketWatch; title image via Indian Web 2)

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