Top-secret government information — particularly those relating to defence and internal security — and classified communication such as cabinet notes, will soon be exchanged only over a new, fully secure telecommunication network.
The hush-hush network will be up and running in the next 12 months. The Department of Telecommunications (DoT) and the Centre for Development of Telematics (C-DoT) will put the grid in place.
A committee headed by K Sridhara, member (technical), Telecom Commission, is expected to decide on the architecture for the network by Tuesday.
Sources in DoT, who attended a meeting on the issue earlier this week, said: “The secure system will enable the exchange of information like cabinet notes among senior bureaucrats and ministers. The system will be in place in the next 12 months.”
The network will be modular — a grid that can be replicated — and initially allow only voice communication. It will be designed to transmit data at a later stage.
To begin with, the network will operate in Delhi but it will be extended gradually to state capitals, and eventually to district headquarters.
The cabinet had recently approved a proposal to set up such a network to curb leaks of sensitive information. It also discussed the need to set up a secure network for defence and security-related information when it announced the guidelines last year for enhancing the limit in foreign direct investment in the telecom sector from 49 per cent to 74 per cent.
The network would be different from the one that would monitor private telecom networks, the DoT sources clarified.