In India, the use of the internet is growing rapidly. It has given rise to various new opportunities in every field we can think of, be it education, entertainment, business, or sports. The Internet has advantages as well as disadvantages and one of the major disadvantages is Cyber Crime.
As we know in this era information/data is not less than wealth, therefore any behavior that targets the security of the computer system illegally is termed as Cyber Crime. Cyber Criminals are usually kids (age 9-16) and professional hackers.
The first recorded cyber crime took place in the year 1820.[i]
Cyber Crime refers to all criminal activities which are done using the medium of
Communication technology components, the internet, cyberspace, and the World Wide Web.
Internet crime is any crime or illegal activity committed using the internet. Cyber Crime is also known as computer crime.
Types of Cybercrime
Cybercrime is a crime that targets computers directly and they are facilitated by computer networks. Crimes facilitated by computer networks are Cyberstalking, Computer fraud & identity theft, Hacking, Child Pornography, Offensive Contents, Software Piracy, Credit/Debit Card Fraud, Cyber Terrorism, and Violation of Privacy on the Internet, Spam, and Harassment, etc.
Categories of Cyber Crime
There are Categories of Cyber Crime like Cyber Crime against person, property, and government.[ii] -Cyber Crime against property includes various kinds of harassment that occur in cyberspace which consists of cyberstalking, distributing pornography and trafficking, or other.
- Cyber Crime against property, these crimes are used to destruct other's property by the transmission of harmful programs through cyberspace, hackers steal confidential information by unauthorized means.
- Cyber Crime against the government includes cyber-terrorism which means hacking government websites, military websites. It is used to threaten the government by the medium of cyberspace.
Cyber Crimes under IPC
Section 192 (fabricating false evidence) - whoever makes a false entry in any book or electronic record is punished with imprisonment of either description for a term of seven years, and shall also be liable to fine; and whoever intentionally gives or fabricates false evidence in any other case, shall be punished with imprisonment of either description for a term of 3 years and fine.
Section 292(sale) - capturing, publishing, or transmitting the image of a private area without any person’s knowledge or consent. In the first conviction up to 2 years imprisonment and a fine of Rs. 2000. In the second Conviction up to 5 years imprisonment or a fine of Rs 5000.
Section 319 & 320(cheating) – if a password is stolen and is used for fraudulent purposes is punishable up to 3 years imprisonment or fine for cheating under section 319 of IPC and punishable up to 7 years imprisonment or fine under section 320.
Section 379(theft) – if data of a company or individual is stolen by hacking through the internet this theft of dada is punishable up to 3 years of imprisonment or fine or both.
Section 408 (criminal breach of trust) deals with criminal breach of trust by clerk or servant and states that “whoever, being a clerk or servant or employed as a clerk or servant, and being in any manner entrusted in such capacity with property, or with any dominion over property, commits criminal breach of trust in respect of that property, shall be punished with imprisonment of seven years or fine.
Section 420- Whoever cheats and thereby dishonestly induces the person deceived to deliver any property to any person, or to make, alter or destroy the whole or any part of valuable security, or anything which is signed or sealed, and which is capable of being converted into a valuable security, shall be punished with imprisonment of seven years and fine.
Section 425(mischief) – whoever with the intention destroys anyone’s property, damaging computer systems will fall within section 425 of IPC. The punishment for this offence is 3 years imprisonment or fine or both.
Section 465(Punishment for forgery)- making a false document or false electronic record to cause injury is a crime and punishable up to 2 years imprisonment or fine or both.
Gagan Harsh Sharma v. The State of Maharashtra
Certain individuals were liable for theft of data and software from their employer and are charged under sections 408 and 420 of the IPC.[iii]
India has seen an increase in 86% in cybercrimes during COVID 19 lockdown period. There is more number of cases because there so may cybercriminal who are targeting people who are using digital medium there E-wallets and personal data is targeted. In the name of donations many people are coming up with websites in name of PM cares fund and 8000 complaints have been received from Indians as well as abroad, these mediums are being used for making money.
Therefore precautions should be taken while giving out data on the internet, personal details should not be revealed, never allow the browser to remember your data, and always make sure that your IP address is protected and make sure there are protected secure mechanisms on your computers or laptops. Always use antivirus to guard your computer and never send or share your credit card numbers on any site which is not secured and also change your passwords frequently.