Only Authorised Law Enforcement Agencies Can Tap Telephones, Says Government

The government on Tuesday said only authorised law enforcement agencies in the country are empowered to tap telephones or intercept and monitor any electronically transmitted information. Union Minister of State for Home Ajay Kumar Mishra said this in response to a question on whether national or international agencies are authorised to monitor and decrypt any digital information, including WhatsApp conversations.

“Only authorised law enforcement agencies in the country, are empowered to intercept, monitor or decrypt or cause to be intercepted or monitored or decrypted, any information generated, transmitted, received or stored in any computer resource as per legal provisions of section 69 of the Information Technology Act, 2000,” he said replying to a written question.

The minister said safeguards and review mechanism for telephone tapping have also been prescribed in the Information Technology (Procedure and Safeguards for Interception, Monitoring and Decryption of Information) Rules, 2009, and the Standard Operating Procedure issued for the purpose.


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