Special ReportsPublished on Jul 22, 2023 PDF Download
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Hitting Refresh: Making India-US data sharing work

The system for cross-border sharing of data for criminal investigations under Mutual Legal Assistance Treaties (MLATs) — most analysts agree — is broken. This report builds on ideas shared during a consultation held by the Observer Research Foundation (ORF) on data sharing between India and the US. While this paper may not be the first of its kind — there is a significant body of literature that chronicles the problems with the MLAT process — there has been little that examines the problems through an Indian lens. That is the aim of this report. Aided by interviews with Indian investigating agencies, policymakers and electronic communication service providers, this paper identifies elements in the data sharing process that result in inefficiencies. It suggests reforms that can help address those inefficiencies, both in the short and long run.

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