Issue Brief on “India and Twitter Legal Imbroglio: Authoritarian State versus Platform Freedom”

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The debate about bringing social media platforms under stringent scrutiny and accountability is on the rise globally. The enhanced role of these platforms in the daily lives of their users is problematic for cyberspace largely remains an uncharted territory free from the constraints of law and regulations. In this milieu, India has once again hit the headlines over its tussle with different social media platforms. 

Last year WhatsApp sued the Indian government when they introduced the new Information Technology[1] regulations which asked WhatsApp to allow tracing the original creator of the post.[2] WhatsApp had reservations about it because they have an end-to-end encrypted service and promises privacy to billions of its users. WhatsApp’s general security and privacy guidelines clearly state that “technology and privacy experts have determined that traceability breaks end-to-end encryption and would severely undermine the privacy of billions of people who communicate digitally.”[3]

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