Indian Government restricts using foreign providers like Google’s Gmail for its employees

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After the NSA espionage of US on foreign governments, Indian government is enforcing all its employees to use in house services to main the integrity and confidentiality of data. A senior official in ministry of communications & information technology sent an official notification to approx. 500,000 of its employees to restrict services like Gmail for any form of communication and replace/enforce with in-house services.  Companies like gmail store their data elsewhere than India so it helps to maintain confidentiality of data.

“Gmail data of Indian users resides in other countries as the servers are located outside. Currently, we are looking to address this in the government domain, where there are large amounts of critical data,” said J Satyanarayana, Indian secretary in the department of electronics and information technology.

As reported in Times of India

“The move comes in the wake of revelations by former US National Security Agency contractor Edward Snowden that the US government had direct access to large amounts of personal data on the Internet such as emails and chat messages from companies like Google, Facebook and Apple through a programme called PRISM.

Documents leaked by Snowden showed that NSA may have accessed network infrastructure in many countries, causing concerns of potential security threats and data breaches. Even as the new policy is being formulated, there has been no mention yet of how compliance will be ensured.

Several senior government officials in India, including ministers of state for communications & IT Milind Deora and Kruparani Killi, have their Gmail IDs listed in government portals as their official email.”

Creating a gmail user takes few seconds but validating a person identify is possibly when we can gmail ids on all our government websites.  As per the reports a policy will be enforced to make all government related communications are done only using Indian owned servers to avoid any kind of foreign intervention.

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