For Amazon and Flipkart, India's efforts to keep data local could bring about significant changes. The policy requires more local data centers and server farms as well as ways to control how data is moved between countries. The directive also outlines the mandate that e-commerce data exchanged abroad should be available to Indian officials at all times.
"Electronic commerce and data are becoming crucial factors and key factors in India's growth and economic development," said the policy, adding that the changes are part of the country's efforts, "the potential of the e-commerce sector to realize".
This policy is not the first of its kind. Last year, global payment companies such as MasterCard, Visa and AMEX had to store transactions in India on local servers. As reported by Reuters Amazon.com Inc. and Flipkart were forced several months ago to restructure their Indian operations after the country changed the rules governing direct investment in e-commerce.
Politics also attract attention Businesses that benefit from user data say: "The importance of data ownership should not be undermined." According to the policy, users retain ownership of the data they generate and the "processing of such data by companies without explicit consent must be treated strictly." What could that mean for companies that have been identified as sharing sensitive data with Facebook?