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Friday, May 20, 2005

Indian Cyber Police are toothless tigers

INDIA: Cyber Police are toothless tiger

Lack of guidelines prevents police from charging more individuals with cyber crimes

The Times of India
Wednesday, May 4, 2005

Hyderabad -- The Information Technology Act, 2000, defines only three types of cyber offences as crimes -- tampering with source documents, hacking a computer and sending obscene e-mails.

By its definition, most cyber frauds coming to light these days are not crimes, including the online railway ticket racket unearthed here last week.

Although an Internet-related crime, no case was registered against the men who purchased railway tickets online by punching stolen credit card numbers and sold them at higher prices. Simply because cheating as a crime remains out of the purview of the Act.

This recalls a similar case last year, when the city police arrested some people for gambling online. For the same reason, the cyber police did not register a case against them.

In such cases, where crimes are committed by using information technology, the cyber police now only assists the local police instead of investigating them themselves.

Because of limited purview, the cyber police have registered only 19 cases since it started functioning in 2002. Of them, 10 were related to obscene e-mails and pornographic material, three related to source code theft by employees of IT companies and six to computer hacking.

This year, the cyber crime police station has registered only one case, related to obscene mail, triggering off a clamour to widen the scope of the act.

Date Posted: 5/4/2005


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