Absurd: Tapping through mobile operators is legal!


With the Communications Act, and through operators, the state created an opportunity for illegal tapping, claims university security professor and former director of the Intelligence Agency, Vladimir Pivovarov.
According to him, this opportunity derives from an article of the Law which reads: “Operators are obliged to provide the technical requirements for the interception of communications in their networks.”
Pivovarov claims that immediately after the law was enacted, operators obtained equipment, while they have the possibility of tapping through their software.
– When the law was being passed, I was against it. But operators are exempt from the possibility of criminal prosecution. For tapping to be legal, there must be an order from public prosecutor, which is accepted by the court. Everything else would be illegal. The recordings released by the leader of the opposition are possible only from our services, because foreign services would not wiretap such a large group. However, it would not be possible without the operators in Macedonia – stated Professor Pivovarov for META news agency.
Article 175 of the Law on Electronic Communications (we use sample of the law placed on the website of the Ministry of Information Society and Administration, published in the Official Gazette of 25th of February 2014, with the conviction that the laws published on their website are valid and in force) reads that operators are obliged to provide the technical conditions for the interception of communications in their networks, in accordance with the Law on monitoring communications.
Paragraph 2 of Article 175 requires the operators themselves, at their own expense, to provide and maintain the equipment, the corresponding interface and establish electronic communication lines for transmission to the competent institution (body) authorized for monitoring. Operators are obliged to ask for technical specification of the competent authority for the equipment, which identifies measures and standards for information security which are to be applied by the operator.
Whether, under this Article, the recordings in the cabinet of the Prime Minister were made illegally?
META news agency asked an answer to the question asked regarding the allegations of Zaev whether they really tapped citizens illegally from all three companies working with mobile and fixed telephony – “T-Home”, “ONE” and “VIP”. We received response only from “VIP”, which firmly stated to work in accordance with the laws of the Republic of Macedonia.
“We do not possess equipment for listening, monitoring, storage, recording, retention or any other form of interception or surveillance of communications. Operators shall, in accordance with Article 175 of the Law on Electronic Communications, provide an appropriate interface and to establish electronic communication lines to transmit to the competent authorities to monitor communications to facilitate the monitoring of their communications network, in accordance with Law on monitoring communications,” reads the response we received from” VIP “.
Even three days after the sending of the question via email, there is still no reply from “ONE” and “T-Home”, and the phones of those in charge of media directly hung up our calls.
Apart from mobile and fixed telephony, citizens of Macedonia are increasingly talking on the free network “Viber”, owned by “Facebook”. On 19th of January, Prime Minister Nikola Gruevski met with CEO of the company “Viber” Talmon Marco, Director for technology development of the company, Yigal Magaznik and Hirato Shinatro from the online trading company “Rakuten”.

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