India’s national intelligence agency has launched a new product, Citizen Labs, that aims to give citizens the ability to record and share their life in the country.
The new app, Citizen, which is a product of Citizen Labs’ Defence Ministry-led Digital Media Lab, was announced on Tuesday by Army Chief Bipin Rawat.
“We have been following the technology that Citizen Labs has created and we are excited to bring it to the Indian Armed Forces,” Mr Rawat said in a statement.
“Citizen is a digital camera that can be used for a variety of purposes, including recording and sharing, so that we can better understand and respond to the threats we face.”
“We are working on making it available for the civilian market,” Mr Bhatia said.
“We have put the Government of India’s permission process on hold for now, but are committed to make the app available for civilian use.
We want to ensure that the citizen does not have to wait for permission from the Government before accessing this valuable information.”
The new app aims to make it easier for people to record video in India, where the average video clip is just over one minute long.
It also aims to bring transparency to government surveillance.
“In India, people are often not aware that their digital footprint is a record of who they are and what they do,” Mr Bhhatia added.
“It’s time for us to make this data available in a way that enables people to participate in the public debate.”‘
We need transparency’The app will initially be available in India and other parts of the world, but the Government is also hoping to roll it out globally in the coming months.
“What we are aiming for is to get this app available to the entire country by next year,” Mr Ranganathan said.
The new Citizen Labs product, which comes with a free trial period, will be available to download for Android users as well as Apple iOS users.
It will also be available for other platforms in the near future, Mr Rangasamy added.
The app is also aimed at encouraging citizen engagement in the digital sphere, Mr Bhattia said, with a video calling feature that will allow citizens to record phone calls and send them to the authorities.
“Citizen’s video calling is really important for the security of our citizens and also for our defence forces,” Mr Singh said.
“With citizen recording, you can ask questions, discuss what you see on the video and send the video to your colleagues.”
The Citizen Labs app will also allow people to upload videos, photos and other data to their social media accounts.
“With Citizen Labs you can upload anything from a photo of a person to a video clip of a train,” Mr Srivastava said.