For a nation which has witnessed a multitude of financial scams in the last few years, what could be more daunting than the fact that the premier Intelligence Bureau (IB) — mandated to fight terror and its funding — still remains unconnected with the Secure Information Exchange Network (SIEN) due to 'erratic power supply'.
“SIEN is fully operational for secured exchange of secret information with all nodes connected except for the IB. The IB is out of bounds because of an erratic power supply situation,” an official said.
Operationalised last year, SIEN is an unprecedented and ambitious government effort to synchronise the highly classified databases of economic intelligence and enforcement agencies under a single window system.
Built by the National Technical Research Organisation, SIEN enables secure real-time exchange of secret information related to financial and other crimes through e-mails, fax, video and telephone over a common encrypted link.
IB is one of the clutch of 11 agencies that have come together under the SIEN platform. The other agencies are Enforcement Directorate, CBI, Directorate of Revenue Investigation, Central Economic Intelligence Bureau, Directorate General of Excise Intelligence, CBDT, Narcotics Control Bureau, Financial Intelligence Unit, BSF, and the RAW.
For long, the huge paper work required even to obtain small bit of information from other agencies especially in high profile cases had been a big obstacle for investigating and enforcement agencies.
SIEN is being devised as a solution in such cases.