Feeds

Millions of mobiles blocked by Indian authorities

No ID, no call

Gartner critical capabilities for enterprise endpoint backup

India has blocked service to an estimated 25 million mobile phones lacking valid identity codes over concerns criminal or militant groups could use them to organize attacks.

Mobile phones with a blank or all-zero International Mobile Identity (IMEI) code went dead at midnight Tuesday as a result of a government security directive that became law in October 2008.

The 15-digit IMEI number can be used to identify a handset on an operators network, allowing individual calls to be traced to the phone it came from. Phones without a valid IMEI are usually inexpensive, unbranded handsets manufactured in China.

According to the Times of India, Chinese-made handsets account for about 13.3 per cent of the country's total mobile market.

India's government claims these untraceable phones are a potential security threat when in the hands of unsavory individuals. The Indian Cellular Association urged compliance with the rules:

"Terrorists and dangerous elements may have taken cover under the illegal and fictitious IMIE mobile phones, which could have been used to trigger a series of criminal activities," the trade organization wrote in an October newsletter.

"As a part of the great mobile trade and industry, we believe that by disallowing the existence of illegal IMEI numbers in our telecom ecosystem we can play a greater role to strengthen our nation's security requirements," it continued.

The government has allowed operators to provide a new unique ID number to phones that don't comply with the new regulation. ®

Build a business case: developing custom apps

Whitepapers

Implementing global e-invoicing with guaranteed legal certainty
Explaining the role local tax compliance plays in successful supply chain management and e-business and how leading global brands are addressing this.
Endpoint data privacy in the cloud is easier than you think
Innovations in encryption and storage resolve issues of data privacy and key requirements for companies to look for in a solution.
Scale data protection with your virtual environment
To scale at the rate of virtualization growth, data protection solutions need to adopt new capabilities and simplify current features.
Boost IT visibility and business value
How building a great service catalog relieves pressure points and demonstrates the value of IT service management.
High Performance for All
While HPC is not new, it has traditionally been seen as a specialist area – is it now geared up to meet more mainstream requirements?