New Delhi: The Ministry of Home Affairs has
asked the Department of Telecommunication to direct service
providers to store call records of customers for at least
five years and make them available to law enforcement agencies
Citing security concerns, the MHA has conveyed to the DoT
that the existing system of keeping call records by the
telecom companies for six months has not been able to satisfy
the security agencies and hence storing of call details for a
longer period was necessary.
However, the DoT has not taken a final decision on the
issue as the telecom companies have objected to the move
citing operational costs.
"We want telecom companies to preserve their call data
records for five years so that the security agencies can use
that whenever required," a Home Ministry official said.
The law enforcement agencies insist that if the telecom
companies do not comply with the order, after the DoT
decision, heavy penalty should be imposed on them as it is an
issue of national security which cannot be compromised.
There have been instances in the past when the government
has imposed fines to the tune of Rs 700 crore on various
telecom operators for carrying out illegal and clandestine
activities in their services, particularly for non-compliance
of the subscriber verification process.