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TRAI says telecom companies don't own consumer's personal data

Trai said that the existing framework for the protection of the personal information/ data of telecom consumers is not sufficient and to protect telecom consumers against misuses.

Published: 17th July 2018 12:45 AM  |   Last Updated: 17th July 2018 08:22 AM   |  A+A-

Image used for representational purposes only.

By Express News Service

NEW DELHI: Pitching for a stronger reform to protect consumer's personal data in the telecom space, regulator TRAI on Monday said that consumers should be given the right to choice, consent and to be forgotten to safeguard their privacy.

"Each user owns his/ her personal information/ data collected by/ stored with the entities in the digital ecosystem. The entities, controlling and processing such data, are mere custodians and do not have primary rights over this data," the regulator said in a recommendation made to DoT on "privacy, security and ownership of data in telecom networks".

TRAI said that the existing framework for the protection of the personal information/ data of telecom consumers is not sufficient and to protect telecom consumers against the misuse of their personal data all entities in the digital ecosystem, which control or process their personal data should be brought under a data protection framework.

The recommendations from TRAI come at a time when various entities are accused of misusing consumers data through mobile apps and social media platforms. Trai said that till the time a general data protection law is notified by the Government, the existing Rules/ license conditions applicable to TSPs for protection of users' privacy be made applicable to all the entities in the digital ecosystem.

"The Government should place a mechanism for redressal of telecommunication consumers' grievances relating to data ownership, protection, and privacy," TRAI said.

It also recommended that multilingual, easy to understand, unbiased, short templates of agreements/ terms and conditions be made mandatory for all the entities in the digital eco-system for the benefit of consumers.



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