The government has mandated storage of international calls, satellite phone calls, conference calls and messages made over normal networks as well as on the internet for a period of at least two years, according to circulars issued by the telecom department.
The move follows an amendment made in the unified licence (UL) in December by the Department of Telecom (DoT) which extended storage of call data records as well as internet logs to two years from the earlier provision of one year.
UL holders are telecom companies like Bharti Airtel, Reliance Jio, Vodafone Idea, BSNL for providing all kinds of telecom services, except satellite phone services.
"The licensee shall maintain all commercial records, call data record, exchange detail record, IP detail record with regard to the communications exchanged on the network. Such records shall be archived for at least two years for scrutiny by the licensor for security reasons and may be destroyed thereafter unless directed otherwise directed by the licensor," the circular dated January 27 for voice mail, audiotex and unified messaging service license said.
The amendment applies to companies like Tata Communications, Cisco's Webex, AT&T Global Network, etc who have subscribed to these licences.
The DoT made amendments in the ILD licence on January 25 which besides extending an additional one year for maintaining call detail records includes provision for storing details of international communications made using internet protocol.
A similar amendment has been issued for a licence issued to BSNL for providing satellite phone calls and data services as well as for VSAT licence holders who provide satellite-based services on January 24 mandating them to maintain call data and internet communications records for at least two years.