Security fears prompt change in DTH rules


7 Apr 2011
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After BlackBerry, GMail, Nokia emails and Skype services, the direct-to-home (DTH) television industry is the latest to come under the glare of security agencies. The government is planning to review and modify licensing conditions for DTH operators after law enforcement agencies and the ministries of home and defence raised security concerns.
What is the security threat in DTH, essentially a mode of viewing television channels in your living room with a portable satellite dish? Technical experts say that theoretically, the DTH infrastructure can be used to secretly pass on encrypted information to anywhere in the satellite footprint. “Security agencies have woken up to this fact. Therefore, the necessary laws are required to gain access to operators providing services in the event of any such need arising in the future,” an expert told FE.
Sources said DTH services could come under the purview of the central monitoring system (CMS) proposed to be set up by the DoT. CMS will be empowered to intercept most forms of electronic communication in the country.
Experts said that all private DTH operators could soon be mandated to store communications sent to subscribers for up to six months. Also, all call data between the subscriber and the operator will have to be stored for up six months. Operators could also be asked to share the financial history of any subscriber on demand from security agencies in public interest. The changes and modifications in the DTH licensing guidelines are expected within next few months, sources said.

Currently, there are no such guidelines in the licensing conditions for the six private DTH operators.

Storing 6 month data for each subscriber is not a joke.... :huh
It may be a nightmare for DTH companies....
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