Telcos Facing Delay on Equipment Security Clearance By NCSC Portal

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Indian telecom operators are sceptical of placing orders with the big telecom equipment companies for the fear of delays in delivery. For the unknown, the Indian telecom companies are fearful of delays in the supply chain because of the flagging by the National Cyber Security Coordinator (NCSC). For the unknown, the telecom companies who want to buy telecom equipment in India have to first show interest in a company. Post this process, the NCSC proceeds ahead with a supply chain check in which it vets the company for any security lapses and Chinese companies are put under more scrutiny than others. However, this process is proving to be more time-consuming for the telcos.

Companies Facing Delay in Products

A senior executive from a telecom company in a conversation with ET Telecom remarked that the government had already said beforehand that the process would be a little time taking hence telecom companies are only bearing up with what they have been warned of. However, some believe that if things keep on taking up time then the 5G plans of some of the telecom companies might be delayed. Also, because of the delay, some of the telecom companies have placed advance orders.

Vendors Worried About the Security Process Timelines

The execs from some of the leading vendors have also shown concern about the absence of review and feedback from the authorities. As per the vendors, while the companies are supplying a lot of information and updates to the authority, there has been little to no feedback hence causing the companies to operate in the dark. There are two tags worthy to note “trusted sources” and “trusted products”. NCSC is yet to give its first “trusted sources” tag to any company in India. On the other hand, the “trusted product” tag will mean that the details of the product will have to be supplied to the NCSC portal at every stage of the deployment. The official also said that there is going to be a visible impact from September. Even the telcos are not placing orders right away because they also want to seek clarity before doing so.

Reported By

Junior Editor

Arpit spends his day closely following the telecom and tech industry. A music connoisseur and a night owl, he also takes a deep interest in the Indian technology start-up scene and spends rest of his time spilling poetry and stories on paper.

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