DoT Amends Telecom Licenses Regarding Procurement of Telecommunications Equipment

The Department of Telecommunications (‘DoT’), by way of a series of Notifications issued on March 11, 2021 and March 12, 2021 amended the licenses for ‘Internet Service Provider’, ‘Captive VSAT CUG License Agreement’, and ‘Commercial VSAT CUG License Agreement’ to include a recognition for National Cyber Security Coordinator (‘Designated Authority’) to impose conditions for procurement of telecommunications equipment. These conditions may be prescribed on grounds of defence of India, or matters related to national security (whether directly or indirectly). The Designated Authority: (a) must notify the categories of equipment for which security requirements related to trusted sources are applicable, (b) must also notify the trusted sources along with the associated telecommunications equipment (‘Trusted Products’); and (c) may notify a list of designated sources from whom no equipment may be procured. With effect from June 15, 2021, the relevant licensee is required to: (a) only connect ‘Trusted Products’ (i.e., telecommunications equipment notified by the Designated Authority) in its network; and (b) seek permission from the Designated Authority for upgradation of existing network utilising the telecommunications equipment not designated as ‘Trusted Products’. The DoT has clarified that these directions will not affect ongoing annual maintenance contracts or updates to existing equipment already inducted in the network as on the effective date of the Notifications.

Published In:Inter Alia - Quarterly Edition - June 2021 [ English Chinese japanese ]
Date: June 30, 2021