Published On : Tue, Sep 22nd, 2015

Deleting messages sent through encrypted message services may become illegal

Whatsapp logo
According to the proposed National Encryption Policy, deleting messages sent through WhatsApp, Apple’s iMessages or Google Hangouts may become illegal if it is implemented. You may need to keep the copies of all the conversations for 90 days. This also results in Online Businesses keeping the customers’ sensitive information in plain texts for 90 days, exposing your information to potential hacking attacks.

The government has drafted policy document and published it online for feedbacks from citizens and organizations. It has detailed methods of encryption of data and communication used by the government, businesses and citizens.

According to the drafted policy, citizens may use encryption technology for communication and storage. However, encryption algorithms and key sizes will be prescribed by the government through Notification from time to time. This means that the government will decide the encryption standards for everybody and entities like Google and WhatsApp will have to oblige the encryption standards prescribed by the Indian government.

An expert group set up under the Department of Electronics and Information Technology (DeitY) has drafted the policy. All citizens can send their comments on the draft policy to by October 16 and give their feedbacks.