This VPN Provider Refuses To Follow Govt Rule For Storing Users’ Info; Quits Indian Operations
The removal of all its India-based VPN servers has been announced by the Virtual private network service provider ExpressVPN.
The VPN provider has called the directions given by the Indian Computer Emergency Response Team (CERT-In) as “overreaching” and have rejected them.
New Law Makes It Mandatory to Store User Information
ExpressVPN said that the new data law makes it mandatory for all VPN providers to store user information for at least five years. As a counter move, ExpressVPN has decided to take the decision of removing all the India-based VPN servers.
The company said that their users will still be able to connect to VPN servers that will give them Indian IP addresses and allow them to access the internet as if they were in India. These ‘virtual’ India servers will instead be physically located in Singapore and the UK.
The company said that it refused to participate in the Indian government’s attempts to limit internet freedom as the new rules are contradictory to the entire purpose and existence of VPNs.
Criticism From VPNs & The Stance of Government
The company also said that it will continue to fight to keep users connected to the open and free internet with privacy and security irrespective of their location while focusing on protecting privacy as well as freedom of expression.
New directions issued in the month of April by CERT said that the service providers will have to store the names, IP addresses of its users, along with usage patterns and other data.
Most of the major VPN have been criticizing the new rules of the government as far as VPN is concerned.
Netherland-based Surfshank also said that it was exploring the possibility of legally challenging directions.
Rajeev Chandrasekhar, MoS IT while reacting to this criticism said that if VPN service providers do not want to follow the new directions, they are “free to leave India.
He also said that these new directions will not have any impact on business viability.
He said that when it comes to the internet, the work can be both good and bad. Safe and trusted platform we have come up with cyber security regulations. The only restriction is that VPN is misused for criminal activities, VPN operators will have to cooperate and produce the data of the person committing the criminal activity.