Big social media companies may be asked to maintain database of active mobile number of users

NEW DELHI: The Information Technology (IT) ministry has proposed that important social media firms ought to keep a database of energetic mobile numbers of all their customers for verification goal below a revised algorithm, based on a supply.

The proposal — aimed toward tackling points associated to anonymity of customers within the fast-growing social media area — has been mooted for the primary time as a part of the amendments prone to be made to the present IT middleman guidelines, the supply stated.

Social media firms with greater than fifty lakh customers in India shall be categorised as important social media intermediaries. These firms may also must adjust to stricter obligations, together with traceability of customers, below the revised guidelines, the supply stated.

The ministry has despatched a draft of the revised guidelines to the regulation ministry for vetting.

According to the supply, the revised guidelines additionally seeks to attract a distinction between obligations and necessities of ‘important social media firms’ in addition to all different intermediaries and platforms.

Significant social media intermediaries ought to do verification and keep a database of energetic mobile numbers of all their customers, the supply instructed PTI.

By placing in such a requirement, the IT middleman guidelines would even be in sync with provisions within the Personal Data Protection Bill. The latter has a provision for verification of social media customers, though on a voluntary foundation.

“If you take a look at points like traceability or anonymity on social media platforms, the issue is that it’s largely confined to important social media gamers and never every kind of intermediaries.

“So, it has been proposed that there will be some rules that will apply to all platforms and some extra obligations only for significant social media intermediaries,” the supply stated.

Original draft of the IT guidelines didn’t point out about any requirement for sustaining energetic mobile numbers of all customers by important social media firms.

The authentic draft stated that intermediaries can be required to deploy technology-based automated instruments for pro-actively figuring out and eradicating or disabling public entry to illegal data or content material whereas the proposed modifications could now limit the necessity for automated instruments for detecting youngster sexual abuse materials.

The modifications proposed by the federal government within the IT Intermediary Guidelines (Amendment) Rules, are additionally anticipated to assist improve the accountability of huge social media firms within the backdrop of unfold of faux information by way of such platforms.

The authentic draft of proposed amendments to the principles was put within the public area in December 2018 for feedback from stakeholders. Later, there have been a number of rounds of discussions inside the IT ministry on revising the principles.

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Tarun Banerjee

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