New Regulations & Requirements for Turkish Electronic Communication Service Providers

InternetTurkey’s Information and Communication Technologies Authority (“Authority”) has received new powers to suspend service providers’ services, make direct auditing and require companies to meet minimum capital thresholds to operate in the market. Turkey has also introduced new obligations for the electronic communication service providers regarding the permissions and notifications for share transfers, as well as data retention periods.

The Regulation Amending the Regulation of Authorization in Electronic Communications Sector (“Amendment Regulation”) was published in Official Gazette number 29739 on 11 June 2016.

The Amendment Regulation grants the Authority below mentioned new powers:

  • The Authority can now suspend Service Providers’ authorization for a limited or unlimited time period, or operate the network directly, if this is necessary due to war, full mobilization (or similar), public security, or national defense.
  • The Authority can now inspect companies to authenticate application information or documents (except official documents).
  • The Authority can set a capital sub-limit which companies must meet to operate in the electronic communications sector.

The Amendment Regulation introduces new requirements for service providers also:

  • Companies which provide electronic communication services must store data and traffic information for two years. Other data (including user information) should be kept for the durations required in related laws and regulations.
  • For share transactions:
    • Authority’s permission is required for transferring 10% shares or more.
    • Companies must notify the Authority within two months after the transaction of shares less than 10% shares.
  • To become an authorized service provider, applicants must be joint-stock companies.
  • Companies must provide sales, maintenance and repairs, and consultancy services in accordance with their operations and services under the authorization.

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