back to article Skype and Google next against the wall in India

The Indian government is planning to take on Skype, Google and everyone else offering secure comms once it's brought RIM properly to heel. The government met with Indian mobile operators yesterday, resulting in an ultimatum being issued that lawful interception of BlackBerry communications must be made possible by the end of …


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  1. brimful


    Shakes head whilst saying "OK"

  2. Geoff Campbell Silver badge

    The 70s called.

    They want their dinosaur politicians back.

    And they're welcome to them. Really, where do these losers come from? Wasn't there a time when it was considered essential to have at least a passing familiarity with an area before framing laws about it? If these jokers can't understand the basic difference between communications using centralised, out of country, servers, and communications directly between two nodes on the Internet, what right do they have to be making laws, or drawing a salary for being in a position to make laws.

    It's about time someone deployed a bit of clue-by-four around some of the parliaments of the world....


    1. Cameron Colley

      They seem familiar with it to me.

      They know that the tech can be used to communicate without them being able to listen in -- so they're planning to demand a back door or ban it.

      How difficult it is to ban Skype from a country is another thing -- but I'm sure that putting on a blacklist and making the use of, or disseminating of the product a crime will do wonders.

      Stopping the use of this type of technology is a similar exercise to reading encrypted documents -- if you can't do it with technology you get the rubber hose out.

      1. Anonymous Coward
        IT Angle

        You know what else is illegal in India?


  3. joylessdave


    if people really want to hide their communications there are plenty of alternatives.

    i.e. a vpn to a friend /relative in another country then run skype/google talk and email through that.

    what is the indian government going to do put a complete block on all secure communiaction unless it has 'backdoor' access. I can't really see how it is going to do this.

    If people really have something to hide im sure they will use more that just an encruypted voip service.

  4. JaitcH

    No problem, go and screw your national production goals

    Let the Indian government go ahead and do a number on Google and Skype. All they will achieve is increased problems in advancing their technology goals.

    They should bear in mind that neither Google or Skype costs a penny to use and therefore their GDP benefits.

  5. dave 46
    Thumb Down

    And the floodgates open

    Thank to Rim caving in to some petty despot in the middle east every country with a chip on their shoulder thinks they can get in on the act.

    But it doesn't matter, it really doesn't, because it's very easy to get around it, if you're really up to something dodgy and want to keep it hidden.

    The only people who are at risk are normal law abiding folk who unfortunately hold different political views to their government.

    I expect it from the Arab despots but what is India doing following suit - bored of democracy already?

    1. L1feless

      I agree

      Why not just say no to these ass backwards governments? If they cannot do business with the rest of the world because they want to snoop in on everything then just say no. Eventually the businesses there will start to pressure the government as their international business associates are using more function devices and the right people will win the war.

  6. Tom Chiverton 1


    But RIM *does not know* the encryption keys. The real story is a much darker one about governments that fear security for their (and other) people. Are they going to ban VPNs and/or specific encryption protocols too ?

  7. rahul

    The "Indian Government"...

    ... knows diddly squat about how technology works. Seriously.

    You've heard about "indian call centres"? Well the Indian Government's tech department is much, much worse.

    All that is going to happen is genuine users, such as home users of Skype such as I, are going to be inconvenienced.

  8. Anonymous Coward

    Watching intently

    RIM might not know encryption keys up front, but as it controls the software, it can surely find them out. The stitch-up in UAE suggests that people with access to RIM servers can view the messages.

    It will be far more interesting to see if Skype cave in like RIM did. With no servers in the path, they could only give view access via some backdoor in the algorithm....which they always said doesnt exist. The alternative of blocking Skype in India is not a trivial task.

  9. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    This is a scam

    This has nothing to do with terrorism, but a ploy by government to eavesdrop on law-abiding citizens. If we value innocent until proven, liberty, and the right to privacy, the mobile operators will tell the governments where to go.

  10. Arclight


    Ban all VOIP related systems in India, which would efectively shut down all the outsourced call centres.

    The Indian Government, doing more to put a smile on UK consumers the UK government.

  11. tempemeaty

    They can go play with themselves

    The ability for those with some computer sophistication to circumvent draconian Gov rules does not give the Gov a pass on committing oppression against it's the people within it's boarders.

    If the other corporations cave into this Gov behavior then those companies can go play with themselves. I will point it out at every opportunity and the fact we should do everything in our power to avoid those companies products. If they support such Gov behavior in other countries then those companies would also support our Gov doing the same to us right here at home.

  12. danishctc

    What wrong?

    Hey people, anyone here know the definition of AES ? Why does it have to be ratified by NIST and adopted by US government ? Privacy is a fundamental right but if you reveal data to the US, China and even Saudi Arabia, Indian government is justified to seek access to data as it is 1 of the biggest victims of terror attacks, half of which could have been avoided with better intel.

    Deregulate the Web completely or put up comprehensive laws on privacy, cyber-attack, data-interception but laws which are equal for all...

  13. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    Terrorist government

    India has a track-record of violating individual rights, like freedom of speech. is just one of the examples.

    I am an Indian, and I will switch away from whoever makes deals with the Indian government to infringe on my rights.

    I do thank Google for investing so much of their time and money into Tor.

  14. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    Goodbye India

    You're about to be cut off the net, but your politicians can't see that.

    Going after Blackberry was one thing ... but for the government to take on a sizeable chunk of the Internet service boys at the same time is suicidal. One firm at a time would have been doable; but to try the lot in one go ... man, that is just .... well ... words fail me.

    1. Anonymous Coward

      Maybe the Indian government will threaten to...

      Outsource the West into the Stone Age?

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