There have been numerous reports about how the DoT has banned Nokia’s popular Nokia Messaging services in India. However, as you many have noticed Nokia Messaging continues to run just fine till date, so I reached out to Nokia India to request an official response.
Here is what they have to say:
“As we have not received the mentioned notice, we are not able to comment on it.
Our push email services are operator agnostic and can be experienced by consumers across operator networks on a host of Nokia devices. At this time we are not aware of any operator restriction on access by consumers to our service.
It is our endeavor to fully comply with all applicable legal requirements wherever we operate. In offering our services in India, we have adhered to the rules and regulations required by the Indian Government and will continue to do so in the interest of national security and public safety”.
That’s more than enough reassurance from Nokia. Its basically saying that right now there seems to be no problem and if the government in fact does put its foot down, Nokia is more than willing to comply with whatever requirements the government lays out. This is in line with their previous statement given on August 30 that they will setup servers in India to facilitate compliance. The bottomline seams to be that unlike BlackBerry, which refuses to allow the government to monitor email on its services and risks a complete ban, Nokia will take all steps necessary to make sure that there is no outage.
[Update: Nokia’s India servers have been up since December.]
That’s not all, R Chandrashekhar, Secretary, Department of Telecom has in an interview to Business Standard stated that, no directions have been issued to Nokia to ban its push-mail services.
Q. Has the department (DoT) issued any directive to Nokia for banning of its push-mail services?
A. We have not issued any such directive but there have been some references from the home ministry and security agencies saying that such services should not be allowed. We have, so far, not issued a ban or any blanket ban on such services. We are still looking at such security issues internally. All the services which use encryption in one form or the other are being looked at. The issues here are not company-specific, but being looked at from a generic point of view and what is required from a security point of view.”
Its sometimes funny how the Internet spins things out of proportion.