All digital platforms must be responsive to nations: Prasad
Prasad raised the issue during the G20 Digital Minister’s Meet hosted by Saudi Arabia.Updated: Jul 23, 2020 01:09 IST
Union information and technology minister Ravi Shankar Prasad called for digital platforms to be responsive, accountable and sensitive to the concerns of sovereign nations as far as safety, defence and privacy is concerned.
Prasad raised the issue on Wednesday during the G20 Digital Minister’s Meet hosted by Saudi Arabia. His comments come in the backdrop of India’s ban on 59 mostly Chinese web and mobile applications including TikTok and UC browser due to security concerns.
“In view of these concerns, the digital platforms having presence in many countries must become trustworthy, safe and secure. It is time to acknowledge that digital platforms anywhere in the world have to be responsive and accountable towards the sovereign concerns of countries including defence, privacy and security of citizens,” Prasad was quoted as saying by a press statement.
China’s digital minister Miao Wei was also in attendance at the virtual meeting. India’s ban on the popular applications came in the aftermath of deadly border clashes with in the eastern Ladakh Sector in June this year, where 20 Indian soldiers and an undisclosed number of Chinese soldiers were killed.
According to Ministry of Electronics and Information Technology (MEITY) officials familiar with the developments, neither China nor India took up the issue directly. “However, the minister did convey to all present at it is the right of a country to protect the data of its citizens,” a MEITY official told HT.
Prasad also raised other data security issues and said that data must belong to the sovereign nation concerned. “Digital economy must go hand in hand with the Data economy. We need to acknowledge the sovereignty over data. Data must belong to the sovereign nation concerned, to protect also the privacy concern of its people,” Prasad added.
Prasad also asserted that a robust data protection law would soon be passed in India. The concerned bill is still pending in Parliament.
According to Internet Freedom Foundation trustee Apar Gupta, the minister mentioning a robust data protection policy was a positive step.