Search engine optimisation (SEO) is a process where a web platform is organised in such a manner that it gets a prominent place at the famous search engines. The idea is to get as much redirects as possible to the intended web platform. The Information Technology Act, 2000 (IT Act, 2000) is the sole cyber law of India. It is silent about SEO or its consequences. The recent Information Technology (Amendment) Bill, 2008 (Bill, 2008) has further weakened the existing cyber law of India. Fortunately, the same has not yet been notified and perhaps would never be notified in the larger interest of India.
According to Praveen Dalal , the leading Techno-Legal Specialist of India, “SEO is not a new concept and is in existence for long. However, there is a general misconception and lack of understanding about this concept. Surprisingly, some cyber law observers in India claimed that it is synonymous with click fraud. The fact is that click fraud is a term used for getting illegal revenue from the advertisements placed upon a web platform whereas SEO is intended to get leverage at the famous search engines of the world. Both are totally different concepts and also handled differently by the companies managing online advertisements and online search”.
The major purpose of SEO is to raise the ranking in the search engines so that possible clients or consumers may reach the site of the concerned web platform in first place. Agrees Mr. Suresh Mehta, a member of legal fraternity. He believes that most of the companies are seeking active services of these SEO companies to raise their ranking. However they can never defeat genuine and qualitative contents no matter howsoever hard they may try. Further, Google algorithms automatically take care of this aspect and it generates a rank as per the quality and standard of the contents.
The state of cyber law in India demands that we not only need a strong law but also a good public awareness so that general public and cyber law observers may acquaint themselves with the correct knowledge and procedures. Perhaps there is a dire need of such an initiative by Government of India (GOI) and Department of Information Technology (DIT).