OTT Apps Will Be ‘Lightly Regulated’ By Govt; Mobile Users Will Get Zero Spam, Fraud Messages!

The Indian government is aiming to bring in ‘Light Touch’ regulations for Over the Top (OTT) platforms through its Telecom Bill, said Union Minister Ashwini Vaishnaw.

OTT Apps Will Be 'Lightly Regulated' By Govt; Mobile Users Will Get Zero Spam, Fraud Messages!

Telecom Bill

Adding that these reforms would help subscribers get relief from spam calls and messages.

The Union Minister of Railways, Communications and Electronics and Information Technology said that this bill will work as protection of the users, while addressing a press conference.

Mr Vaishnaw said, “Wherever possible the regulation should have very effective means of achieving the objective. We have to make strict effective regulations wherever required, but rest in all the places there will be light touch and simple regulations, so nobody will have to face any hassle. This bill will work as protection of users,”.

How Does It Affect?

 The draft telecom bill is currently under consultation with all the stakeholders and a final draft will be made based on the consultation, he added.

Mr Vaishnaw said, “Apps like Facebook, WhatsApp, Telegram, Signal will come under the ambit of Telecom Bill. The draft bill includes OTT, Communication services as well in the definition of telecom services,”.

This bill will affect the Apps like Whatsapp, Zoom, Skype, Facebook Messenger, Telegram, Microsoft Teams, and Google Duo, which provide calling and messaging services.

As they may soon require licenses to operate in India.

Once this bill comes into effect  the cyber frauds are expected to come down , according to the Union Minister.

Mr Vaishnaw said, “All of you know that there has been a rise in cases where people get a call saying I am calling from XYZ bank seeking financial details leading to fraud… or you get threats from unknown numbers… so, we have introduced a lot of points for user protection and to prevent cyber fraud.”

While talking about the calls on other platforms like WhatsApp and Zoom, he said, “Whichever type of call it is, if someone is calling me, I have the right to know who is calling. This is a right that every user has and has been put into the Act (new bill).”

This new bill could offer mobile phone users protection against spam calls and fraudulent messages.

Talking on the progress of this bill, the minister said, “It will take at least 6-10 months before this bill becomes an Act. After the consultation process, we will prepare the final draft. Post that it will go to the Parliament for consideration and passing. We are expecting cyber frauds to come down after it becomes the law,”.

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