Indian government to introduce 'total internet surveillance' system

By Graeme Burton
17 Dec 2013 View Comments
Medical sample under a microscope

The Indian government is planning to launch a surveillance system to spy on and record all internet traffic in India, including emails, blog posts, social media, voice calls and other communications, along with relevant IP addresses.

In addition to the privacy implications, the system will also have consequences for organisations doing business in India, especially high-tech companies with valuable intellectual property that could be exposed. The objective of scooping up 100 per cent of internet traffic in India could also impact web performance.

Further reading

Call Netra - short for Network Traffic Analysis - the system was developed by India's Centre for Artificial Intelligence and Robotics (CAIR) and the data fed directly to India's Intelligence Bureau.

CAIR has been working on Netra since 2010, but the system has struggled to capture 100 per cent of web traffic and has also been prone to crashing.

The aim of the system is to analyse all web traffic and filter it according to keywords. The PR for the system implies that it will be used to detect online terrorist activity.

Ludicrously, the Indian government believes that the country's intelligence agencies will require just 300 gigabytes (GB) to store intercept data, and other sectors of the Indian government just 100GB.

 

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