With growing number of internet users and use of social media have created some problems such as distribution of hacking, spreading rumours, posting photos without consent etc. Though Cyber Security law has been here from quite long time but most of us are not aware of it.

The intricate world of cyberspace is a milieu, which involves communications between devices, people, software and related services. The sophisticated world-wide information distribution network and communication technology is the core of such massive data routing. The inter-connected world of people, devices or software is getting benefited by the technological advancements and today the whole world is in a common pool to utilize cyberspace in and effective an efficient way but this makes it hard to induce clear boundaries of information security in the different groups of users like people, corporate, critical information infrastructure, military and governments.

Cyber Security

Cybersecurity denotes the rules and regulation put in place by the governments intended to safeguard devices, computers, networks and data from unlawful activities or intruders by exploiting weaknesses.

ISO 27001 (ISO27001) is the international cybersecurity standard that delivers a model for creating, applying, functioning, monitoring, reviewing, preserving and improving in information security management system.

The Ministry Of Communication and Information Technology under Government of India provides a strategic outline known as National Cybersecurity Policy. The purpose of this is to protect and provide a clear guidelines for the public and private infrastructure from cyber-attacks.

Information Technology Act 2000-

The Act to define the cyber security in India was passed in the budget session in the year 2000 and signed by the honourable president of India K. R. Narayanan on May 2000.This bill was finalised by group of officials headed by Shri Pramod Mahajan, who was the Minister of Information Technology at that time.

This Act provides legal framework for electronics governance by introducing electronics records and digital signature in any kind of transactions. The formations of Controller of Certifying Authorities was directed by the Act, to regulate and issuing of digital signatures. It also defines cybercrimes and prescribed penalties for them. This Act also established a Cyber Appellate Tribunal to resolve disputes arising from this new law. The Act also amended various sections of Indian Penal Code, 1860, Indian Evidence Act, 1872, Banker’s Book Evidence Act, 1891, and Reserve Bank of India Act, 1934 to make them compliant with new technologies.

The Major amendments was made in 2008, in which a new section 66A, was introduced to penalise sending of “offensive messages”. It also introduced the Section 69, which gave government authorities the power of “interception or monitoring or decryption of any information through any computer resource”. It also introduced sever penalties for pornographic material, cyber terrorism and voyeurism. The Section 69 allows intercept any information and ask for information decryption. To refuse decryption is an offence.

Revocation by the Supreme Court:

In the Shreya Singhal v. Union of India case on 24 March 2015, the Supreme Court of India, gave the verdict that Section 66A is unconstitutional. However rejected the plea to strike down Sections 69A and 79. The Court said that the offences defined under the law were “open-ended, undefined and vague” and that “public’s right to know” is directly affected by it.

List of offences and the corresponding penalties:

Section 
Offence 
Penalty 
65 
Tampering with computer source documents 
Imprisonment up to 3 years, or/and 
with fine up to 200,000 
66 
Hacking with computer system 
Imprisonment up to 3 years, or/and 
with fine up to 500,000 
66B 
Receiving stolen computer or communication 
device 
Imprisonment up to 3 years, or/and 
with fine up to 100,000 
66C 
Using password of another person 
Imprisonment up to 3 years, or/and 
with fine up to 100,000 
66D 
Cheating using computer resource 
Imprisonment up to 3 years, or/and 
with fine up to 100,000 
66E 
Publishing private images of others 
Imprisonment up to 3 years, or/and 
with fine up to 200,000 
66F 
Acts of cyberterrorism 
Imprisonment up to life. 
67 
Publishing information which is obscene in 
electronic form. 
Imprisonment up to 5 years, or/and 
with fine up to 1,000,000 
67A 
Publishing images containing sexual acts 
Imprisonment up to 7 years, or/and 
with fine up to 1,000,000 
67B 
Publishing child porn or predating children online 
Imprisonment up to 5 years, or/and 
with fine up to 1,000,000 on first 
conviction. Imprisonment up to 7 
years, or/and with fine up to 
1,000,000 on second conviction. 
67C 
Failure to maintain records 
Imprisonment up to 3 years, or/and 
with fine. 
68 
Failure/refusal to comply with orders 
Imprisonment up to 3 years, or/and 
with fine up to 200,000 
69 
Failure/refusal to decrypt data 
Imprisonment up to 7 years and 
possible fine. 
70 
Securing access or attempting to secure access 
to a protected system 
Imprisonment up to 10 years, or/and 
with fine. 
71 
Misrepresentation 
Imprisonment up to 3 years, or/and 
with fine up to 100,000 
 

The Government of India passed The Information Technology Act with some critical objectives to achieve as follows −

  • The aim was to use replacements of paper-based methods of communication and storage of information. To deliver lawful recognition for transactions through electronic data interchange (EDI) and other means of electronic communication, commonly known as E-Commerce.
  • To facilitate electronic filing of documents with the Government agencies and further to amend the Indian Penal Code, the Indian Evidence Act, 1872, the Bankers’ Books Evidence Act, 1891 and the Reserve Bank of India Act, 1934 and for matters connected therewith or incidental thereto.

By adopting this Cyber Legislation, India became the 12th nation in the world to adopt a Cyber Law regime.

Mission

The following mission accommodates to cybersecurity −

  • To safeguard information and information infrastructure in cyberspace.
  • To build national capabilities to prevent and respond to cyber threats.
  • To reduce vulnerabilities and minimize damage from cyber incidents through a combination of institutional infrastructure, people, processes, technology, and citizen cooperation.
 
 Author: 
Advocate Piyush pant
 Mr. Piyush Pant 
Advocate, Udham Singh Nagar 
Contact No: +91-9410581048, 8449465646 

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