Industry News

Indian Government Sets Temporary SMS Ban to Fight Muslim Violence Rumors

In an attempt to halt a wave of hatred-inducing rumors sweeping the country, Indian ISPs have been officially requested to temporarily prevent users from sending out bulk SMSes and to block access to specific websites, as reported by pcworld.

The measure comes as a reaction to workers stationed in the Northeastern area of the country rushing home after receiving short messages on their mobile phones about a potential outbreak of violence from the Muslim community in the state of Assam. Websites hosting content inciting anti-Muslim manifestations have also been taken down.

As work migrants use cheap mobile phones to keep in touch with their families, it appears that at least one mobile phone store owner has been instrumental in sending out some of the SMSes to lists of customers who also bought pre-paid credit for their mobiles.

While the Indian Ministry of IT and Communication calls upon all social networking and video-sharing websites to help stop this by taking down “inflammatory and hateful” content, the home minister accuses “elements based in Pakistan” for the outbreak.

Back in May, the online properties of a series of Indian corporations were targeted in Anonymous’ re-enactment of #OpIndia as a reaction to the official decision of forcing Indian ISPs to block file-sharing sites to prevent the pirating of copyrighted materials.

As for its cyber-feud with Pakistan, in June this year, the Indian government announced its intent to strengthen its cyber protection measures and appoint specific agencies to be prepared to carry out cyber attacks on other countries.

About the author

Ioana Jelea

Ioana Jelea has a disturbing (according to friendly reports) penchant for the dirty tricks of online socialization and for the pathologically mesmerizing news trivia. From gory, though sometimes fake, death reports to nip slips and other such blush-inducing accidents, her repertoire is an ever-expanding manifesto against any Victorian-like frame of thought that puts a strain on online creativity. She would like to keep things simple, but she never does.

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