TRAI seeks comments on proposed industry body for cloud service providers

TRAI seeks comments on proposed industry body for cloud service providers
Photo Credit: Photo Credit: Reuters
24 Oct, 2019

Telecom Regulatory Authority of India (TRAI) on Wednesday came out with a consultation paper to decide on the terms and conditions for setting up a not-for-profit industry body for cloud service providers(CSPs). 

TRAI’s recommendations on the regulatory framework for cloud services earlier on August 16, 2017 had been accepted by the government. 

TRAI had recommended that all CSPs above a threshold financial value become part of a registered, not-for-profit industry body registered with the department of telecom (DoT) and comply with a code of conduct prescribed by it.  

The consultation paper cites international certification programmes by industry bodies such as the Cloud Industry Forum and Cloudcode in New Zealand, which award certificate of compliance to members for customer transparency and promoting adoption.

DoT, in a letter dated September 2018, had sought additional recommendations on the conditions from TRAI on the terms and conditions for registration of the industry body, the fee charged and governance structure.

As per TRAI’s previous recommendations, cloud service providers were classified on the basis of service model, deployment model, reselling and marketing model, sectors being served and volume of business. 

DoT has also accepted TRAI’s recommendations on the code of conduct designed by the industry body, which would include definition of regulated entities, quality of service metrics achieved by CSPs, billing model followed by the members, compliance with cloud security standards set by the body, disclosure and transparency on data ownership, location and security standards among others.

The current consultation paper has sought responses on the following points:
Whether there should be a single industry body or multiple bodies of CSPs and whether there should be a cap on the number of such bodies.

  • Documents required, obligations and eligibility criteria for the said industry body.
  • Specific parameters for a CSP to become part of such a body mandatorily in terms of volume of business, revenues, number of customers.
  • The fee structure for being a member of the body.
  • Guiding principles for the body and whether DoT should have a say in it; and
  • What policy may be adopted for the formation of such a body for CSPs

TRAI has invited comments before November 20, followed by counter-comments to be submitted by December 4, 2019.