India’s DoT Cracks Down on eSIM Apps to Counter Cybercrime | #cybercrime | #infosec

India’s DoT Takes Stringent Action Against eSIM Apps Amid Cybercrime Concerns

In a bold move to counter cybercrime, the Indian Department of Telecommunications (DoT) has enforced the removal of eSIM applications Airalo and Holafly from the Google and Apple app stores. This action is a strategic response to the escalating misuse of unauthorized eSIMs with international phone numbers by fraudsters perpetuating cybercrimes within the country.

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Addressing Cyber Threats

These applications, until their removal, enabled users to purchase eSIMs for international travel, presenting a convenient alternative to traditional physical SIM cards. This feature, intended to simplify mobile network access for globetrotters, unfortunately opened the gates to potential misuse leading to cyber fraud.

Further Measures

Not restricting its actions to the mobile application platforms, the DoT also issued directives to internet service providers and telecom operators to block access to websites offering Airalo and Holafly’s services. This comprehensive effort to neutralize the cyber threat posed by these apps underlines the government’s commitment to securing its digital space.

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Targeted Restrictions

Interestingly, while Airalo and Holafly have been singled out for removal, other eSIM providers such as Nomad eSIM and aloSIM remain available to Indian users. This hints at a selective ban, possibly driven by specific security vulnerabilities associated with the now-removed apps. The sale of foreign SIM cards in India requires a no objection certificate (NOC) from the DoT, and these SIM cards can only be used outside India as per DoT’s 2022 policy.

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National Cyber Security