Posted by: Catherine Fernandes | April 8, 2010

Cyber Crimes In India Are Flourishing

Cyber crimes in India are increasing at a rapid rate. The matter is made worst by a weak and ineffective cyber law of India. Though the law minister of India had declared for a separate enactment to deal with growing cyber crimes yet the proposal seems to have been dumped for the time being.

In India cyber crime are tried under both the traditional Indian Penal Code and the Information Technology Act, 2000 (IT Act 2000). However, police is not aware of the minutiae of the cyber law of India. This makes it extremely difficult to prove most cyber crimes, says leading techno-legal expert of India Praveen Dalal.

Even under the IT Act 2000, cyber crimes investigations in India are not up to the mark. This is because of lack of “cyber forensics” capabilities. The collection and presentation of electronic evidence to prove cyber crimes have posed a challenge to investigation, prosecution agencies and the judiciary in the absence of legal enablement of ICT systems in India.

Cyber-related techno-legal acumen and knowledge are not well developed in India. These require a sound working and practical knowledge of information technology as well as relevant legal knowledge. Cyber laws, international telecommunications laws, cyber forensics, digital evidencing and cyber security pose difficult and sometimes hard to understand legal challenges to the courts. This explains why there are almost no convictions of cyber criminals in India. Judges in India must fill in this legal gap.

India needs a good combination of laws and technology, in harmony with the laws of other countries and keeping in mind common security standards. In the era of e-governance and e-commerce, a lack of common security standards can create havoc for global trade as well as military matters.

Information technology is a double-edged sword that can be used for destructive as well as constructive work. It has now created a fifth dimension in addition to land, sea, air and space, though unlike the other four dimensions, it is completely made and controlled by humans. Till now India has absolutely failed to control this fifth element. Let us hope that the Indian government would do the needful as soon as possible.

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