This article is written by Monesh Mehndiratta, a law student at Graphic Era Hill University, Dehradun. The article explains the meaning of cyber crimes and particularly deals with hacking as an offence. It further provides provisions and legislations punishing and preventing hacking in countries like the USA and India.
It has been published by Rachit Garg.
Table of Contents
Hey! Be careful.
Your computer might be the next to get hacked.
Yes, it’s true. Hacking of computers and other devices like mobile phones, laptops, etc. is very common nowadays. You cannot even imagine how many hackers on the other side are trying to get into your computer every minute. In such a scenario, it is important to have knowledge regarding hacking and the offences related to it. Until and unless you are aware of this information, you cannot approach the right authority or take steps to prevent hacking. You might be aware that, presently, crime is not only committed physically in the real world where the accused comes in front of you, but it can also be committed in the virtual space where you do not even know who the accused is. This is because he can easily hide his identity in virtual space. These crimes that are committed in virtual space by breaking into someone’s computer or other devices are known as cyber crimes.
Hacking is one of the most common cyber crimes committed these days, where a person tries to break into your device to extract your personal information and then further use the information against you. It must be noted that everything, whether a picture or any information stored online, can be hacked. This makes our computers, laptops, mobile phones, etc. prone to hacking. This also becomes a nightmare for us as we are unaware of this crime and other information related to it. But you need not worry. You have come to the right platform. By the end of this article, you will be aware of the crimes related to hacking, the laws punishing such crimes, punishments and methods to prevent such crimes. Let us begin.
Meaning and nature of cyber crimes
With the advancement of technology and education, we have been able to invent devices like computers, laptops, mobile phones, etc. that help us communicate with our near and dear ones or anyone in the world. Not only this, but we also store our personal information, like bank details, contacts, photographs, and other important information, in these devices. Who would have thought that this miracle of humanity would turn out to be a nightmare for us one day? There is no doubt that these inventions have been a great help to us, but at the same time, they have given birth to various new crimes where these devices are used as a medium to commit crimes. We constantly fear that our devices will be stolen because they contain our personal information. It is important to know that just because our device is safely kept in front of our eyes, that does not mean that the information cannot be stolen. While you are relaxing, there might be hundreds of people trying to break into your device and steal the precious information.
It is shocking but true that where technology has given us useful inventions, it has also paved the way for new crimes. These crimes that are done with the help of computers as a medium are known as “cybercrimes,” and people who commit these crimes are known as “cyber criminals.” Some of these crimes are hacking, cyberterrorism, cybervandalism, email-spoofing, etc. Any illegal criminal activity done with the help of a computer as a medium, target, or means of committing crime is known as “cybercrime.” Cybercrimes cover a wide range of crimes committed against the confidentiality and security of a nation or the privacy of an individual. The feature that makes them different from conventional crimes is the medium used to commit the crimes and the involvement of virtual cyberspace, where a person can anonymously commit a crime without being present at the crime scene.
Cybercrimes are transnational in nature, which means that a person can easily commit crime in another country without being present there. These crimes can be detected only with the international cooperation of law enforcement agencies. Another challenge with these crimes is the concept of dual criminality, which helps the perpetrators escape liability. For example, if person X is a citizen of India and lives here but hacks the computer of a person living in America, it is very difficult to determine the country where he will be punished and what laws will be applicable. Thus, uniform international laws dealing with punishment and prevention of cybercrimes at the international level are the need of the hour.
Reasons for cyber crimes
In order to formulate guidelines and laws for the prevention of cybercrimes, it is necessary to understand the reasons behind the commission of such crimes. The following are the main reasons behind the commission of these crimes:
- Availability of large data in a small space – with the help of computers a person can easily store large data in a small space which makes it prone to cyber crimes as the information can easily be made available by just breaking into someone’s computer.
- Systems are easily accessible – the unique feature of cyber crimes is that a person can easily commit the crimes in the virtual medium without being present at the crime scene. This virtual medium makes the system accessible for the hackers to extract the stored information.
- Loopholes in technology – it is the technology that gave us computers, raptors and mobile phones. At the same time, it increased the greater risk of commission of cyber crimes. Cyber criminals take the advantage of loopholes in technology to commit crimes and use it as their weapon.
- Lack of evidence – another significant feature of computers is that the evidence can be destroyed in seconds. This further creates problems for the investigating agencies to gather relevant information and evidence to prove the commission of crime and arrest the accused.
- Inaccessibility of criminals – for once it can be imagined that the investigating agencies are able to gather evidence but this is not the end. It is very difficult to recognise the criminals in these crimes because their identity is hidden.
- Negligence – any slight negligence on the part of the victim in ensuring security of his/her personal information stored in the computers can lead to catastrophic consequences. Victim’s mistake can give unauthorised access to the cybercriminal to enter into his system and accomplish his goals.
Intellectual property issue in cyberspace
Intellectual property is the creation of one’s own mind, skills, and talent. With the advancement of technology, people and organisations have realised the importance of intellectual property and are trying their best to safeguard their creations. Patents, copyrights, trademarks, etc. are some kinds of protection that are given to intellectual properties. Cyberspace is a virtual medium in which a person communicates with others through a computer network. A cybercriminal exploits or tries to take advantage of the creations or intellectual properties of another person. For this, they break into their computer system or other electronic devices, which further leads to a violation of their right to privacy.
Violation of copyright
Copyright protection is given to literary, dramatic, musical, or artistic works, cinematograph films, and sound recordings. Whenever a person who is not authorised to exercise the rights over these works does the same, he/she is said to have violated the copyright of the proprietor. The Copyright Act of 1957 gives various rights to the owner of copyright, and any person who exercises such rights without the permission of the owner is liable for punishment. This copyright infringement becomes an easy task when done through the internet over “cyberspace.” A person can easily break into another’s computer and take advantage of their creations, like literary or other works saved there. Thus, copyright infringement is a major issue when it comes to cyberspace.
The following are some copyright issues:
- Linking – In this, a website user is permitted to to visit another website or location on the internet but just clicking on an image or a word. In this process, the rights of the owner whose webpage is linked is damaged. It also creates an apprehension in the minds of customers or people using the internet that the two web pages or websites are similar and related to each other. This also leads to reduction in their incomes and reputation.
- Software piracy – The act of stealing lawfully protected software is known as software piracy. This can be done through copying, spreading, altering or trading. For example, if a person downloads a copy or a replica of Microsoft Word from a different website rather than the original website, it is known as software piracy. Soft lifting, software counterfeiting and uploading – downloading are three types of piracy.
Violation of trademark
A mark that is related to a business or company and can be used as its identity is known as a trade mark. These marks are capable of being represented diagrammatically and can help in distinguishing the products or goods of one company from another. Any unlawful use of such trademarks that results in ambiguity or confusion for the public or customers is known as trademark infringement.
Trademark infringement has become a major concern with the development of cyberspace. Cybersquatting is often committed by cybercriminals with the help of computers in virtual space. It is the act of registering a domain name, trademark, service mark, etc. unlawfully over the internet and then using it. This unlawful use of a domain name or trademark that is similar to that of a famous company creates traffic, which helps cybersquatters earn a lot of money.
Classification of cyber crimes
Cyber crimes are equally dangerous as other serious criminal offences because they are a threat to a person’s privacy, which is now a fundamental right and is included within the ambit of the right to life and personal liberty under Article 21 of the Indian Constitution. These cyber crimes can be classified into three categories:
- Crime against individuals– some examples of these cyber crimes are cyber vandalism, cracking, hacking, email-spoofing, cheating, cyber child pornography, etc.
- Crimes against property– some of the examples are cybersquatting, cyber trespass, internet time thefts, etc.
- Crimes against government– examples are cyber terrorism, cyber warfare, use of pirated software, possession of unauthorised information, etc.
Meaning of hacking
Hacking is one of the most common forms of cybercrime committed these days. People who commit this crime are called hackers. They usually take advantage of loopholes in the technology and break into someone’s computer or laptop to extract their personal information. People might commit this crime to seek monetary benefit by blackmailing the victims or simply for the sake of sheer thrill or other purposes like defamation, disrupting business and reputation, etc.
Different forms of hacking are web-spoofing, trojan attacks, virus attacks, etc. In web-jacking a person tries to take forceful control over the website of another person for ransom or some other purpose. On the other hand, a Trojan, which is an unauthorised programme, can be used to break into someone’s system and gain control over it. These hackers can attack commercial websites and affect their entire business. They also pose a serious threat to the security and integrity of a nation if any government site or computer system is hacked.
Global perspective on hacking
Every country in the world has some confidential information related to its defence, security, citizens, foreign relations, etc. With so many secrets on a large scale, it becomes the duty of every state to protect its data and that of its citizens from any breach or cyber offence. To deal with this situation, every country has devised its own methods. In the United Kingdom, the Central Government formed the National Cyber Security Centre in order to improve the condition of cybercrime in the country. This centre will be headed by professionals and experts who will devise methods to deal with cyber crimes.
The United States of America, on the other hand, has passed the Cybersecurity Act of 2015 with an aim to strengthen defence mechanisms against cyber crimes and criminals. India has also tried to devise ways to deal with this situation and curb cyber crimes. The Central Government in India realised that the Indian Penal Code, 1860 is not efficient enough to deal with offences happening in the virtual space medium, and so the Information Technology Act, 2000 was passed, which specifically deals with offences that are committed through computers or other electronic devices over the internet.
As we all know, society is dynamic by nature and keeps changing with time and technology. One of these changes is the increase in crimes, especially cybercrimes, which pose a serious threat to one’s right to privacy and liberty. Though the countries have been able to deal with such crimes in their territories by their own mechanisms, the world at large has not been able to devise a uniform method for the same, because of which many criminals who commit crimes across the border are not punished.
Cyber security laws in the United States
Federal hacking laws
Hacking as a crime is also punishable in the United States of America. The Congress has enacted several federal laws to prevent cybercrime. These are:
- The Computer Fraud and Abuse Act of 1986.
- The Stored Communications Act of 1986.
- The Electronic Communications and Privacy Act of 1986.
Computer Fraud and Abuse Act
This Act, also known as anti-hacking legislation, was enacted in 1986 with the object of prohibiting any unauthorised access to someone’s computer system. It initially protected governmental entities and their computer systems, but later its scope was expanded to include computer systems, laptops, etc. of any person residing in the country. The Act also provides civil remedies like
- Seizure of property,
- Impounding information stolen and devices used to commit hacking and other related crimes.
Offences punishable under the Act
The Act also recognises certain civil violations. These are:
- Unauthorised access of the computer and obtaining information stored therein.
- Trafficking a password of a computer by which it can be accessed easily.
- Transmission of spam.
- Damaging the data stored in the computer system.
The various criminal offences that are punishable under the Act are as follows:
|S.no.||Offence||First conviction||Second conviction|
|Accessing or obtaining information regarding the security of the country.||Imprisonment for up to 10 years.||Imprisonment for up to 20 years.|
|Obtaining information by accessing the computer.||Imprisonment for up to 1 year to 5 years.||Imprisonment for up to 10 years.|
|Trespassing on a government computer system.||Imprisonment for up to 1 year.||Imprisonment for up to 10 years.|
|Intentionally damaging the computer system by knowing transmission||Imprisonment for 1 year to 10 years.||Imprisonment for up to 20 years.|
|Defraud and obtain value by accessing computers.||Imprisonment for up to 5 years.||Imprisonment for up to 10 years.|
|Damaging recklessly by intentional access.||Imprisonment for 1 year to 5 years.||Imprisonment for up to 20 years.|
|Causing damage and loss negligently by intentional access.||Imprisonment for 1 year.||Imprisonment for up to 10 years.|
|Trafficking in password||Imprisonment for 1 year.||Imprisonment for up to 10 years.|
|Extortion by involving computers.||Imprisonment for up to 5 years.||Imprisonment for up to 10 years.|
Cyber security laws in the EU
The European Union has four major regulations that regulate cybersecurity. These are:
- European Union Agency for Cyber Security (ENISA) – this Agency was established in 2004 with an aim to raise network and information security across all the internetwork operations in the union. It recommends a course of action to be followed during a security breach. It also provides direct support and makes policies in this regard.
- NIS Directive – The European Union in 2016 established Network Information Systems (NIS) Directive to improve cybersecurity in their territory which is now replaced by NIS2 in 2023. The focus was on the digital service providers and operators of essential services which are mainly involved in social and economic activities and will be affected majorly in case of data or security breach.
- Cyber Security Act 2019 – this Act provides a certified framework to the companies across EU against cybercrimes in digital products and services.
- EU GDPR – the EU General Data Protection Regulation was established in 2016 and enforced in 2018 with the aim to standardise the system of data protection among all the members in the European Union.
Hacking laws in India
According to a 2021 report of the United States Federal Bureau of Investigation, India is ranked among the top five countries as the victims of cybercrimes. The virtual space medium of cybercrime has no territorial boundaries and so poses a big threat to law enforcement agencies. An internet user is subject to the laws of their state, but this concept conflicts when it comes to international level disputes. This loophole resulted in fewer chances of criminals being caught, and they misused computer technology to commit crimes. It is necessary to regulate and prevent such crimes in order to protect personal data and the privacy of individuals. In lieu of this object, the Indian Government enacted the Information Technology Act, 2000 (IT Act, 2000). The Act not only prescribes punishment for hacking but also mentions other cybercrimes and offences related to hacking.
The Information Technology Act, 2000
With the expansion of the internet and technology, traditional crimes like conspiracy, solicitation, fraud, etc. are now committed through computers, laptops, mobiles, tablets, etc. This necessitated the enactment of new laws in order to curb these illegal activities. Thus, the IT Act was enacted to regulate and bring e-commerce under the framework of the law. It enumerates various cybercrimes along with their punishments. Apart from this, it also provides protection of data and privacy under Section 43 of the IT Rules, 2011. Some of its features are:
- Legal recognition of e-commerce which includes e-transactions as well.
- Electronic records are recognised like any other record in a document.
- Digital signatures are now legally recognised but it must be authenticated by the certifying authorities.
- A Cyber Law Appellate Tribunal has been set up under the Act to hear appeals related to cyber crimes mentioned under the Act.
- The Act does not apply to negotiable instruments, power of attorney, trust, will or any other contract for sale.
Punishment for hacking
The punishment for hacking is given in Section 66 of the IT Act, 2000. The Section also enumerates the essential ingredients of hacking. These are as follows:
- There must be an intention to cause wrong to a person.
- Damage must be caused by unlawful and illegal means.
- There must be knowledge that the information contained in the computer, laptop or mobile is important and confidential, which if revealed, destroyed or altered can cause serious damage to the person to whom it belongs.
According to the Section, the offence of hacking is punishable by imprisonment up to three years or a fine extending to five lakh rupees, or both. One of the fastest growing crimes under hacking is identity theft, in which a person tampers with or appropriates personal information about another person without their permission or consent. The Section is also related to the Indian Penal Code, 1860 (IPC), as the words ‘dishonestly’ and ‘fraudulently’ used in the Section, have the same meaning as those given under Section 24 and Section 25 of the Indian Penal Code, 1860 respectively. Further, Section 66B of the IT Act, 2000 provides punishment to a person who dishonestly receives a stolen computer system or other communication device. The punishment includes imprisonment up to 3 years, or a fine not exceeding one lakh rupees, or both.
Other offences related to hacking punishable under the Act
The following are mentioned under Chapters IX and XI of the Act, along with their punishments:
Any person who accesses or tries to access computers or other devices like laptops, mobiles, etc. of another person without their permission, is liable to be punished. According to Section 43 of the Act, the punishment for such unauthorised access is a fine not exceeding one crore rupees. The term ‘access’ has been defined under Section 2 (1) (a) of the Act.
Tampering with documents in computer
The act of tampering with documents stored in the computer is punishable under Section 65 of the IT Act, 2000. If any person tries to conceal, destroy, or alter, or causes another to do the same with the computer source and documents stored therein, either knowingly or intentionally, they are liable to be punished under this Section. A person doing so will be punished with imprisonment up to 3 years or a fine not exceeding two lakh rupees or both.
Accessing protected system
Section 70 of the Act is related to a computer system that is declared to be protected by the appropriate government. If any person other than those who are authorised by the government to access, accesses or tries to access such protected computer systems without permission, he/she will be punished with 10 years of imprisonment along with a fine.
Breach of privacy or confidentiality.
The Act also prescribes punishment for a person who breaches the privacy or confidentiality of another person without consent by accessing his/her electronic record, book, register, information, or document in contravention to the provisions of the Act. The punishment includes imprisonment up to 2 years or a fine up to one lakh rupees or both, as given under Section 72 of the Act.
Ethical hacking vs hacking
We all know that hacking is an illegal activity and is also punishable by law. However, at times some institutions, organisations, companies, and even the government hire certain experts in hacking to hack their systems in order to understand the loopholes so that they can be corrected in time. This type of hacking is known as ethical hacking and is permissible. The experts of ethical hacking are hired by governmental agencies like the Central Bureau of Investigation, National Security Agency, Federal Bureau of Investigation, etc.
It can be seen as a field of study in which an expert in computer security hacks the system of the owner with his/her consent in order to determine the vulnerabilities of the technology used by them. These companies, institutions, or organisations hire the experts who specialise in ethical hacking and also pay them for the same. This kind of hacking serves as a source of help for the police in their investigation. Currently, cybersecurity and networking are emerging as fast growing industries and careers for youngsters to pursue. This is because the internet has become a vital part of everyone’s daily life. A person can hardly imagine his/her life without the internet. Where technology has simplified the work of people, it has also paved the way for threats and harm to them. Thus, it becomes necessary to regulate the online activities and crimes committed over the internet behind the shield of virtual space.
Both hacking and ethical hacking involve breaches of the right to privacy, and the hackers in both kinds have to gain the same education and undergo the same training, but there can be differentiation between the two. One may use the education in a bad way to steal confidential or personal data, while the other may channelise and utilise the skills to remove vulnerabilities or weaknesses of a computer system or other such devices and the technology used therein. Hacking is an offence punishable by law in India. However, ethical hacking is permitted, but the field of ethical hacking has not developed yet, it is still growing and might increase the pace in a few years. Some educational institutions do provide a course in ethical hacking, which means this is a growing profession.
|Basis of comparison||Ethical hacking||Hacking|
|Intention||The intention of the expert or hacker is to determine the vulnerabilities or weaknesses of the computer systems of a particular organisation, firm, or company by whom he/she is hired to do so.||In hacking, hackers have a mala fide intention to steal data or other confidential information by breaking into the computer system or other communication devices.|
|Reason||These hackers are hired by companies, organisations, and even governments in order to prevent future hacking by correcting the loopholes in the technology used by them.||The hackers might do so in order to take revenge, out of enmity, or to cause wrongful loss and have wrongful gain.|
|Legality||Ethical hacking is permissible.||Hacking is against the law and thus prohibited.|
|Punishment||There is no punishment for ethical hacking, as it is done with the consent of the system’s owner.||It is punishable by law.|
|Funds||These ethical hackers or experts are paid by the organisation or company that hired them to do so.||Hackers earn profit by either blackmailing or selling confidential information to the other party.|
Ethical hacking as a source of help
Now, we are aware that hacking is punishable by law, while ethical hacking is permitted and serves as a source of help for the police and other investigating agencies. Ethical hackers help them identify the criminals by decoding multiple situations, especially when a case involves a technicality. In India, there have been instances where ethical hackers have proved to be an asset for the police. They joined hands with them to prevent such cyber crimes. Two of such instances have been discussed below:
In 2016, a girl living in Gurgaon filed a case of harassment and defamation against a boy who hacked her Facebook account and sent multiple obscene messages to her family and friends. It was also alleged that the boy photoshopped her pictures online with the purpose of defaming her publicly. This case was finally transferred to the cyber cell, where the young ethical hackers and engineers helped the police officers decode the password. It was found that all the allegations made by the girl were true, and the accused was finally caught.
Bank fraud case
Another instance where the ethical hackers helped in the investigation was a bank fraud case where a woman claimed that somebody hacked her bank account and stole five lakh rupees. When the cyber police officers and hackers investigated, they found a suspicious application installed on her phone that helped the hacker access her bank account. Further, the bank was asked to provide the IP address of all the devices used in making transactions from her account. With this, the police were able to catch the criminal and put him behind bars.
Methods to avoid hacking
In order to avoid an attack or hacking of your computer system or other communication devices, one must use the following measures:
- Use strong passwords and make sure you change regularly.
- Avoid sharing passwords with anyone.
- Keep the computer software updated.
- Use antivirus software or internet protection.
- Avoid downloading unnecessary files from unknown websites and sources.
- While working over wifi, it must be encrypted with passwords.
- Use two step authentication or verification process. This will make things difficult for the hackers to break into your computers.
- Ignore mails from a suspicious website and delete them frequently.
- Take regular backups of data and information stored in the computer.
- Before selling or discarding the system, all information stored therein must be deleted.
Steps to be taken if your computer has been hacked
A person must try to avoid a cyber attack by following the above-mentioned measures because only a vulnerable computer or electronic device can be hacked. However, if your computer has been hacked, you must immediately do the following:
- If your computer has been hacked you will see certain applications installed in your device about which you know nothing. Never click or use such installed applications rather deactivate or uninstall them.
- Immediately reset all your passwords along with passwords of your bank accounts and other important details.
- You must log out from all online accounts and inform your friends and family that your system has been hacked so they must not reply or pay heed to any fraudulent or suspicious message or email sent in your name.
- Try to disconnect the internet. This will help you in avoiding a cyber attack by a hacker.
- You must try to reload the operating system and install updates from trusted websites which will avoid any virus attack.
- You must also remove any external device or hardware attached to your system bug before doing so do not forget to take backup of all your work and necessary information stored therein. If, in case, a hard drive is vulnerable to hacking you must immediately wipe off all your information from there.
- Install security software or antivirus in your system.
- Contact your bank and monitor your accounts and financial credits.
- Report to the police officers if necessary.
Cybercrimes pose a serious threat to Article 21 of the Constitution, as they prevent a person from enjoying his personal liberty and privacy. Every cybercrime starts with a person trying to break into your system. This act of breaking into someone’s computer without permission is known as hacking and is the most dangerous cyber crime. Once a person is able to access your computer, he/she will use your personal information to extract money or take revenge on you. Thus, it was necessary to curb this crime. The Indian Penal Code, 1860 was inefficient in dealing with these crimes, and so the legislatures enacted the IT Act, 2000 which specifically deals with cyber crimes. The Act provides separate punishment for hacking and other cyber crimes. It has also become a global concern as every country is either its victim or prone to be the one. Countries like the United States of America, United Kingdom, member states of the European Union etc have devised their own ways and means to regulate cyber crimes in their territory but the problem still persists. Most of the time, criminals escape due to dual criminality as there are no uniform international regulations or standards to regulate the crimes. It becomes very difficult to punish the accused if arrested , in case the crime has been committed in another country while the accused resides in a different country.
With the efforts of the Indian Government to prevent hacking and other cybercrimes, India has reached the 10th position in cyber security among different countries in the world. This was given under the Global Cyber Security Index 2020. However, this is not the end of the story. The challenge of curbing cyber crimes still persists, and with the advancement of technology and education the problem will increase. For now, artificial intelligence (AI) poses a big challenge. There is no provision that provides liability in case AI is used to commit these crimes. Another challenge is the investigation of these crimes. It becomes very difficult to arrest an accused if the identity is hidden behind virtual space. There is a need to hire experts in cyber police agencies who can easily track these crimes and the criminals. Moreover, with the advancement of online trends privacy will be hindered at every step. This calls for a need to take collaborative steps. The government, regulating and investigating agencies and companies must come together to fight the disease of cyber crimes.
Frequently asked questions (FAQs)
What is a virus hoax?
It is a message in the form of e-mail describing a particular virus and issuing a warning related to it, which does not exist. The computer users are requested to forward the message to their friends and family, and soon it spreads like a chain of letters. Experts usually advise ignoring such messages rather than acting as requested in the message.
What are the types of hackers?
Hackers can be generally classified into 3 categories:
- White hat hackers – these are permitted by any organisation or government to hack their system so that the loopholes of technology could be recognised and corrected in a timely manner in order to avoid actual hacking of their systems in future.
- Black hat hackers – these hackers try to break into someone’s computer by hacking their system to steal personal or important information. They have bad intentions and the activity is illegal and punishable by law.
- Grey hat hackers – these hackers do not have any bad or malafide intentions but once they hack a system by taking advantage of flaws in the technology used, they can demand monetary benefits from the organisation or person whose system is hacked.
The other categories of hackers are:
- Blue hat hackers – people who hack the computer system or laptops, mobiles etc with intention to take revenge from a person or organisation are called blue hat hackers.
- Green hat hackers – these hackers do not have sufficient experience and can be called beginners.
- Red hat hackers – these hackers are vigilant but not associated with any institution or organisation. They might or might not have malafide intentions behind hacking.
Is stalking a cyber crime?
Cyberstalking is an offence and involves activities through which a person’s movements and daily activities are noticed across the internet. The stalkers harass the victim and cause emotional distress to him/her. A person can easily commit the crime of cyberstalking by keeping a record of the victim’s activity and gathering personal details with the help of social media. This is usually done with the aim of taking revenge, seeking monetary benefits or threatening a person.
Who is empowered under the IT Act to investigate cyber offences?
According to Section 28 of the Act, the power of investigation is conferred on the controller or certifying authorities. These powers are similar to those exercised by income tax authorities.
- Cyber Security Laws and Regulations of 2023 (knowledgehut.com)
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