Millennium Post

Government wants to hear you voice chat

The counter-terrorism agencies are in a fix over the mushrooming of unregistered voice over Internet protocol (VoIP) or Internet telephony services that are a hit with youth. This has become a security problem, as the location of the caller and the time of call cannot be ascertained, prompting the Central agencies to ask service providers to come up with a solution within a month.

A series of meetings among security agencies, the Department of Telecom, the National Technical Research Organisation and service providers have failed to throw up any solution to block the unregistered VoIP, which operate from outside the boundaries of the country, sources privy to the developments said.

Recently, militants who have been accused of triggering an explosion in Jammu and Kashmir have said that they received information from across the border through VoIP, which went undetected.

Sources in the government said that service providers, especially those running Internet services in Jammu and Kashmir, were called to the Union home ministry recently and given a month’s time to find out ways to intercept and find the end user of the VoIP based on the Internet protocol address.

The central security agencies have expressed concern over the lack of real-time monitoring of communication exchanges taking place over the Internet and that telecom operators were not providing them the real-time data of these conversations, which is a security risk, they said.

The sources said Lashker-e-Taiba’s Kashmir commander, codenamed Furkan, has been frequently talking to its cadres in the Kashmir valley using the VoIP technology.

‘We are sometimes able to monitor it, but the chances of missing the conversation cannot be ruled out because of mushrooming of VoIP service providers who use varying frequency,’ a senior official said.
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