Monday, May 2, 2011

Cyber Crimes and Cyber Laws in India (Part 2)

This blog post is second in the technical awareness series. It basically aims to create technical awareness. For past 20 days, I have been researching many websites and articles on Cyber Crimes and Cyber Laws in India. This article is a result of all those efforts. Please understand, that this article is a general one and based on my understanding of the various articles on Cyber Laws on the Web. It is not meant to be used a guide, its just about general awareness. Links to the websites are available for further reference.

From the Alert Indian Website I also got a few things. I would like to request to my readers that if you have created any fake profiles or are planning to create so, please have a look at Section 66C. For those who have habit of bullying or harassing others please have a look at Section 66A. Facebook users should refrain from posting comments/posts/notes about others as it is a public platform. One should also remember the line "shall be punishable with imprisonment up to three years, or with fine which may extend up to two lakh rupees, or with both."

Information Technology (Amendment) Act 2008
Information Technology (Amendment) Act 2008  has been notified and enforced on 27th Oct, 2009.
This Act punishes various cyber crimes including Cyber Terrorism.

Important Sections Related to Cyber Crimes
Chapter XI
65. Tampering with Computer Source Documents
Whoever knowingly or intentionally conceals, destroys or alters or intentionally or knowingly causes another to conceal, destroy or alter any computer source code used for a computer, computer programme, computer system or computer network, when the computer source code is required to be kept or maintained by law for the time being in force, shall be punishable with imprisonment up to three years, or with fine which may extend up to two lakh rupees, or with both.
Explanation -
For the purposes of this section, "Computer Source Code" means the listing of programmes, Computer Commands, Design and layout and programme analysis of computer resource in any form.
Sec 66. Computer Related Offences
If any person, dishonestly, or fraudulently, does any act referred to in section 43, he shall be punishable with imprisonment for a term which may extend to three years or with fine which may extend to five lakh rupees or with both.
Explanation: For the purpose of this section,-
a) the word "dishonestly" shall have the meaning assigned to it in section 24 of the Indian Penal Code;
b) the word "fraudulently" shall have the meaning assigned to it in section 25 of the Indian Penal Code.

66 A Punishment for sending offensive messages through communication service, etc
Any person who sends, by means of a computer resource or a communication device,-
a) any information that is grossly offensive or has menacing character; or
b) any information which he knows to be false, but for the purpose of causing annoyance, inconvenience, danger, obstruction, insult, injury, criminal intimidation, enmity, hatred, or ill will, persistently by making use of such computer resource or a communication device,
c) any electronic mail or electronic mail message for the purpose of causing annoyance or inconvenience or to deceive or to mislead the addressee or recipient about the origin of such messages shall be punishable with imprisonment for a term which may extend to three years and with fine.
Explanation: For the purposes of this section, terms "Electronic mail" and "Electronic Mail Message" means a message or information created or transmitted or received on a computer, computer system, computer resource or communication device including attachments in text, image, audio, video and any other electronic record, which may be transmitted with the message.

66 B. Punishment for dishonestly receiving stolen computer resource or communication device
Whoever dishonestly receives or retains any stolen computer resource or communication device knowing or having reason to believe the same to be stolen computer resource or communication device, shall be punished with imprisonment of either description for a term which may extend to three years or with fine which may extend to rupees one lakh or with both.

66C Punishment for identity theft
Whoever, fraudulently or dishonestly make use of the electronic signature, password or any other unique identification feature of any other person, shall be punished with imprisonment of either description for a term which may extend to three years and shall also be liable to fine which may extend to rupees one lakh.

66D Punishment for cheating by personation by using computer resource
Whoever, by means of any communication device or computer resource cheats by personation, shall be punished with imprisonment of either description for a term which may extend to three years and shall also be liable to fine which may extend to one lakh rupees.

66E Punishment for violation of privacy
Whoever, intentionally or knowingly captures, publishes or transmits the image of a private area of any person without his or her consent, under circumstances violating the privacy of that person, shall be punished with imprisonment which may extend to three years or with fine not exceeding two lakh rupees, or with both
Explanation.- For the purposes of this section--
(a) “transmit” means to electronically send a visual image with the intent that it be viewed by a person or persons;
(b) “capture”, with respect to an image, means to videotape, photograph, film or record by any means;
(c) “private area” means the naked or undergarment clad genitals, pubic area, buttocks or female breast;
(d) “publishes” means reproduction in the printed or electronic form and making it available for public;
(e) “under circumstances violating privacy” means circumstances in which a person can have a reasonable expectation that--
(i) he or she could disrobe in privacy, without being concerned that an image of his private area was being captured; or
(ii) any part of his or her private area would not be visible to the public, regardless of whether that person is in a public or private place.

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