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When Empowering The Telcos Through Digitalization Becomes Significant

by Atul Bhatia, VP-IT, Matrix Cellular (International) Services Ltd. June-2016

Digitalization is not a new key word now. It has already been started in India but it still has to cover a long way. If you look at nine pillars of digital India, most of the pillars majorly require connectivity. Broadband highway is one of the pillars which will connect all government functions, departments, universities, villages etc to cater. Without this broadband connectivity the concept of digital India would not be possible. Also National Optic Fibre Project (NOFP) have funded a big amount to connect 2, 50,000 gram panchayats within 2016 for which six lakh kilometres of wire has to be laid out that would need to be assisted by telecom sector. To add more, the contributor in this digitalization is the user habit which is changing and inclining towards two words- quick and easy.  Along the same lines, government is coming up with so many services like e-governance, e-kranti to name a few. The e-governance program ensures that government solutions are available to Indian citizens electronically while through e-kranti, citizens can access everything on internet such as healthcare solutions, educational course and many more. While talking about digitalization, telecom is going to play a major role because accessing of the service requires a good connectivity. So the impact of digitalization on telecom is going to be significant. It would generate revenue as there would be large number of user using the services but at the same time the biggest challenge for telecom is to provide infrastructure which can cater the requirements.

Digitalization means more data generation. From the moment one visits the internet, data is being captured and this data then becomes a part of big data and require security control which can further control the information from being misused. If the information is travelling, the service provider needs to comply with PCI DSS whenever one is going for online transaction which can ensure that the information stored is encrypted. Users should be aware of how the personal information can be stolen by a person who is sitting remotely and accessing their computer. This awareness is also the part of security which can be imparted in some form of email or message. So data centre security, PCI DSS, Information Security Management System and the database must be encrypted. Apart from this another security control that one should have is the code review software. While writing a code for the information the user is accessing on the internet, the loosely written scripts which are there in the software is reviewed and fixed by the code. The code review software is dynamic in nature as it also keeps the track of new vulnerabilities and thus is very effective to secure any organization.

Whether it is wired or wireless communication, the infrastructure which the telecom has to build up and set up requires a cost which is the biggest pain point. As the cost is very high it becomes difficult to reach the ROI in many years. To overcome this obstacle, the government and telecom companies have to come together and mutually decide what initiatives can be taken for the same. Apart from this, ubiquities is one point to be looked at which is the extent to which consumers and enterprises are going to access these digital services and applications. The solution providers have to see the fixed broadband & mobile phone penetration as well as population penetration especially in the rural areas. Moreover, affordability is another point that is up to which extent digital services are available at the price and this is followed by reliability on quality of services and the speed which is essential.

Lot of investment has to be done in R&D. Digital India and Make in India are two campaigns which are going to impact the innovations & economy as well as will boast the investment. These campaigns would provide the opportunity to transform the country’s telecom sector. There would be lot of joint ventures, acquisitions and lot of internal R&D that are required. The only issue that the telecom industry has witnessed is the clarity on several regulatory issues. Thus, by bringing the technologies which are available outside the present telecom industry can be leveraged and would empower our citizens with digital technologies.