The Department of Telecommunications (DoT) to make telecom networks more secure has asked all telecom service providers to get security clearance before placing any order for procuring telecom equipment or software from foreign companies. The DoT has also made it mandatory for equipment vendors to transfer technology to Indian companies within three years of selling equipment to them. “Security clearance is required for the core equipment per-se and not its components. The operation and maintenance of telecom networks should be entirely by Indian engineers; and dependence on foreign engineers should be minimal or almost nil within a period of two years from the date of purchase after security clearance,” the DoT said in a note to all telecom service providers.
However, no security clearance is required for passive equipment and equipment or software manufactured or developed in India by Indian owned or controlled manufacturers. Similarly, hardware or software urgently required for maintenance purposes may not require prior security clearance.