The Department of Telecommunications (DoT) has directed telcos to designate a nodal officer for providing information regarding their network to the national cybersecurity coordinator, whenever sought.

To this end, the DoT has already amended the telecom licence of the telcos to make it mandatory for them to procure equipment from only trusted sources. The list would be notified by the government. This directive comes into force on June 15, 2021.

As per the new mandate, all telecom operators will have to submit details regarding their networks which will include core equipment, access equipment, transport equipment, and support systems to the National Security Council Secretariat (NSCS).  Further, the national cybersecurity coordinator will be the designated authority and the telcos will have to provide any information as and when sought by the coordinator. To this end, coordinator’s permission will be required in case a telecom operator is upgrading its existing network utilising telecom equipment not designated as trusted products.

The telcos will need to share information on the portal which is being developed by the NSCS. These information include about the company, the products they intend to connect to their network, product manufacturer and related details in the portal for evaluation as a trusted product.

Further, telecom operators are required to send the name of the nodal officer in the prescribed format to NSCS by April 10, 2021.