Home Economy Security nod for British firm to roll out telecom services

Security nod for British firm to roll out telecom services

By Fakir Balaji, IANS,

Bangalore : The Department of Telecommunications (DoT) has given security clearance to British telecom major Cable & Wireless (C&W) to roll out voice, data and Internet services in India, a top company official said.

“We are the first overseas telecom service provider to secure the DoT approval for launching our multi-services platform (MSP) in India’s booming telecom market,” C&W India operations Managing Director Sunanda Das told IANS from Mumbai.

The approval includes clearance for the operator’s two international gateways each in Mumbai and Chennai under the Lawful Interception and Monitoring Solution (LIMS) norm.
It is mandatory for telecom service providers to allow law-enforcing agencies to intercept and monitor any communication through voice or data using various protocols.

“Besides voice service for national and international calls, we will offer international private leased circuit (IPLC) directly to enterprises,” Das noted.

Though C&W obtained a licence in February 2008 for Rs.20.5 million (Rs.2.5 crore), the security nod was given 11 months later, as the elaborate process involved testing and validation of its equipment and backbone.

“We have invested about $30 million upfront in deploying the equipment to kick-start our services initially in New Delhi, Mumbai, Bangalore and Chennai. Another $20 million has been lined up to expand our footprint in other cities such as Hyderabad, Pune and Ahmedabad,” Das said.

Admitting that the company was late in coming into the world’s fastest and second largest telecom market, Das said potential for data and other carrier services was immense despite a blip in the current downturn, as enterprises scout for cost-effective solutions to optimise operations and expand business worldwide.

“Multinationals and large Indian corporates will benefit from our high-quality managed IP (internet protocol) services, Ethernet-based solutions and value-added communications applications with greater reliability, availability and performance,” Das said.

Besides the burgeoning information technology (IT) sector, the operator is targeting the banking, financial services and insurance (BFSI), media & entertainment and manufacturing sectors as enterprise customers for its range of services on its MSP.

“We have been providing our services to about 150 customers in the IT and BFSI verticals using the networks of state-run Mahanagar Telecom Nigam Ltd (MTNL) in Mumbai and Delhi and Bharat Sanchar Nigam Ltd (BSNL) in other cities. With our own equipment and networks, we will be able to ramp our services in terms of quality and capacity,” Das said.

As a global supplier of Internet, data and voice solutions, C&W provides enterprises and carrier services to telecos in the US, Europe, Britain and Asia. Its customers in India will be migrated to its network from February.

At the heart of its service portfolio is the IP-based virtual private network (VPN), which provides high-speed, global IP network service connecting all sites through secure dedicated network infrastructure.

“With core fibre backbone spanning the globe, real-time online reporting and industry-leading service level agreements (SLAs), our IP-VPN QoS is ideal for wide area network (WAN) implementation and capable of responding to the rapidly changing business environment,” Das said.

British Telecom (BT) and AT&T are the other two leading international operators, which have been given licenses but waiting for security clearances to rollout their services in the Indian sub-continent.