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No decision yet to bring Facebook, Twitter servers in India: Government

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By NewsGram Staff Writer

Keeping the security threat in mind related to unlawful content on the internet, the central government has decided not to set up the servers of social media platforms like Facebook and Twitter in India, despite a large number of people using these websites.

“The government has not decided to get servers of popular social networking sites, like Hike, Facebook, Twitter, etc. established within the country,” Communications and IT Minister, Ravi Shankar Prasad, said in a written reply to Lok Sabha.

The government regularly interacts with these social media giants to resolve the issues of unlawful content surfacing from time to time on Internet, said Prasad.  He said that the security agencies are facing problem while dealing with encrypted communications administered by various service providers. World over service providers are administering services like WhatAapp, Viber, WeChat, Skype, Yahoo, Gmail  for sharing audio, video, image, data, and accessing other web services anytime and anywhere in a secure manner.

Prasad added that the security of these services is achieved through encryption technology, and the citizens from all over the world are mostly availing these services. “At times these services may also be used by anti-national and criminal elements, which pose a security threat,” the Minister said. The government had ordered all the telecom service providers to provide the lawful inception and monitoring details to the security agencies for all the services including WhatsApp, Viber etc., he added.

The lawful interception facilities provided by the telecom operators are helping the security agencies to intercept these encrypted communication services, but they are not able to decrypt some of encrypted intercepted communication to readable format.

“There are multifarious aspects involved in security enforcement agencies getting such encrypted communication in readable format such as technical, international relationship, legal and regulatory policy, commercial and security requirements etc.,” Prasad added.

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Facebook Commits $130 mn to Build Global Oversight Board for Ensuring Accountability

Facebook intends to continue funding the board's operations in the future, and these reports will be used to assess the need for additional, substantive and long-term funding

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Facebook said it has established the independent Oversight Board Trust to ensure the board can safeguard its ability to make independent decisions and recommendations. Pixabay

Facebook has made an initial commitment of $130 million to build a global oversight board that will ensure good governance and accountability across its services and platforms.

The initial funding will cover operational costs such as office space, staff and travel expenses and should allow the board to operate for at least its first two full terms, approximately six years, Brent Harris, Director of Governance and Global Affairs at Facebook, said in a statement.

The board will submit a yearly budget to the trust for approval and disbursement of funds.

Annual reports from the board and trust will help to document the health and effectiveness of the board, including its stewardship of these resources.

Facebook intends to continue funding the board’s operations in the future, and these reports will be used to assess the need for additional, substantive and long-term funding.

Last November, Mark Zuckerberg wrote about his vision for what content governance should look like for Facebook.

Facebook said it has established the independent Oversight Board Trust to ensure the board can safeguard its ability to make independent decisions and recommendations.

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Facebook has made an initial commitment of $130 million to build a global oversight board that will ensure good governance and accountability across its services and platforms. Pixabay

“The board will have its own staff, independent from Facebook. To start, we expect this staff to include a director, case managers and dedicated staff members (or contracted services) who can support things such as the board’s communications, legal, human resources and research needs,” said Harris.

ALSO READ: Google Maps Captures Over 10 mn Miles of Street View Imagery

In addition, said Facebook, it will continue to work with outside experts to source and review candidates for board membership, including those who’ve been recommended through the public portal, which we opened in September.

“We are eager to see the Oversight Board take shape and start hearing cases next year,” said Facebook. (IANS)