Millennium Post

Modi Govt seeks Microsoft’s help for digital connectivity

To provide digital connectivity across the country, including in inaccessible areas like North-East and Himalayan region, the government has asked Microsoft to provide technology that can be used to connect such areas where fibre or cable could not reach. Microsoft is running a pilot project in Andhra Pradesh using the white space technology to deliver broadband. Telecom Minister Ravi Shankar Prasad met Microsoft President and Chief Legal Officer Brad Smith on Friday and discussed about the pilot project on white space, which the technology giant is running.

"Let the formal results of this come about... whatever technology they bring in, operators will use it. I said it is important that you (Microsoft) come with proper technology that will be used in inaccessible areas of the country like North-East, Himalayan region where it is difficult to take fibre or cable, so how we reach in those areas effectively," Prasad said.

Apart from the pilot project, Prasad also deliberated on issues related to cyber security. Microsoft informed the minister that they have set up three data centres in the country and even government and its departments should use them to store their data.

"Smith said they have installed good facility of cloud computing in India, including their data centres at three places and they requested that the government should also be open to use their cloud platform. "I told them they also need to awaken the government and semi government institutions and sensitise them about the need for using them effectively," Prasad said.

The Minister also insisted that India is under stress of terrorism and extremism and therefore cyber security remains very important and Microsoft must ensure that data stored in their centres is completely safe and secure.  

"I also insisted on the right of privacy that data stored there will not be disclosed. He said that they are working on clear policy guidelines that no data shall be revealed without the consent of the concerned person," Prasad added.
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