Google, Facebook, other top tech firms say Indian cybersecurity rules may create environment of fear

Google, Facebook other top tech firms say Indian cybersecurity rules may create environment of fear

Facebook, Google, and other top technology companies have criticized Indian cybersecurity rules set to be implemented in June 2022. The Internet and Mobile Association of India (IAMAI) and 10 other companies say that the cybersecurity laws will create an “environment of fear rather than trust.”

IAMAI represents tech companies such as Facebook, Google, and Reliance.

As per the new cybersecurity rules, the Indian Computer Emergency Response Team (CERT) wants data breaches to be notified within six hours of detecting such incidents.

IAMAI has proposed in its letter to the Ministry of Electronics and Information Technology to extend the six-hour window and follow the global standard for reporting cybersecurity breaches, which is generally 72 hours.

The new policy also demands cloud service providers and virtual private network (VPN) companies to record subscriber details for at least 5 years after service cancellation.

In their joint letter, IAMAI said the proposed violation penalty, including prison, would lead to “entities ceasing operations in India for fear of running afoul.”

“CERT-In has not provided any rationale as to why the 6-hour timeline is necessary, not is it proportionate or aligned with global standards,” the letter said.

Last week, VPN service provider ExpressVPN stopped its operations in India, saying it “refuses to participate in the Indian government’s attempts to limit Internet freedom.”

On April 28, CERT-In announced a set of guidelines for all companies, data centers, and government organizations to report any data breach within six hours of noticing it. The government has also said VPN service providers that do not want to adhere to the policy were “free to leave India.”

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