Right to ICT and Cyber Security in India
August 31st, 2007 by Praveen Dalal
The aim of this article is to analyse the right and liability equation between the Citizens/Persons of India on the one hand and Indian State on the other. The Citizens/Persons of India have certain rights that are available against the State. Similarly, the State is equally under an obligation to protect them. This article has been deliberately confined to the limited parameters of Rights to Information and Communication Technology (ICT) Security in India (ICT Security in India) and Cyber Security in India. The Security of Citizens/Persons from threats such as Cyber Terrorism in India, Organised Cyber Crimes in India, etc is need of the hour.
This can be done by respecting and protecting various Human Rights, Fundamental Rights and Statutory Rights of Citizens/Persons of India. India needs an optimal and concerted use of available and evolving technologies for the betterment and safety of Citizens/Persons of India. We have to reduce the ICT and Cyber Security Gaps by an ideal Public-Private Partnership Model in India. We have to develop technologies and capabilities to protect Indian Citizens/Persons in areas such as transport, civil protection, energy, environment, health, etc. Additionally we have to increase the Security of infrastructures and utilities supporting areas such as ICT, transport, energy and services in the financial and administrative domain, etc.
Critical Infrastructure Protection in India must be taken seriously in the larger interest of Indian Citizens/Persons. Crisis Management by improving security systems integration, interconnectivity and interoperability would help people of India a lot. In short, ICT Security/ Cyber Security and Society are interrelated and an Indian Society without ICT and Cyber Security would be a big mockery of various Human Rights, Fundamental Rights and Statutory Rights of Indian Citizens/Persons/People.
The advent of ICT in India has raised certain core issues pertaining to their management and security. Though India is emerging as a leader in the field of ICT related services yet there seems to be some missing links. They pertain to the requirement of ICT security in Indiawireless security in India must be considered on a priority basis. The ICT strategy in India must be “reformulated” so that it is conducive for the overall development of Indian economy. The ICT Strategy of India must pay adequate attention to the ICT Security in India as well as Cyber Security in India. Indian State being a “Welfare State” must fulfil its Constitutional and Statutory Obligations towards providing a sound, safe and secure ICT Environment and Infrastructure. that covers cyber forensics, computer and cyber security, etc. The introduction of wireless technology in India would require its own security requirements. Thus, the
II. The Forgotten Security Concerns
The technology revolution in any country may fail to bring the desired and much needed result if we do not adopt a sound and country oriented ICT Security Policy. An ideal ICT Security Policy in India presupposes the existence of a sound and secure e-governance and critical infrastructure base in India on the one hand and effective and powerful laws to support in on the other. The security and safety of various ICT platforms and critical infrastructures in India must be considered on a priority basis before any e-governance base is made fully functional. This presupposes the adoption and use of security measures along with empowering and training judiciary and law enforcement manpower with the knowledge and use of cyber forensics and digital evidencing.
Cyber Law in India is witnessing ups and downs of important dimensions. The journey from its origin to its development is not very smooth and conducive for the ICT oriented Indian society. Further, the proposed amendments to the Information Technology Act, 2000 (IT Act, 2000) have made the “Sole” Cyber Law of India “Impotent” and “Redundant” as it fails to cater the needs of the contemporary society. Instead of making room for checking, preventing and regulating the “Contemporary Cyber Crimes in India” and Worldwide, the Government preferred to “Dilute” it to deleterious levels.
The Government of India must give a “Fresh Look” to the existing IT Act, 2000 to make it safer, stronger and appropriate. The Government must also keep in mind the absolute requirements of ICT and Cyber Security in India that are drastically missing. Till Government fulfil its Constitutional and Statutory Obligations, India must rely upon “Private Initiatives” in this direction. For instance, Perry4Law’s ICT and Cyber Security initiative titled as PTLB TM/SM is managing various Techno-Legal issues associated with the ICT and Cyber Security including protection of “Critical ICT Infrastructure in India”. Let us hope that it would prove an “Indispensable Tool” for Indian Government for “Techno-Legal Security Matters”.
Besides various grey areas in the Indian Cyber Law, India is also facing problems of lack of Cyber Security in India as well as ICT Security in India. A techno-legal base is the need of the hour. Unfortunately, we do not have a sound and secure ICT Security Base in India and Cybersecurity in India is still an ignored World. The Cyber Law in India requires a dedicated and pro active approach towards ICT and Cyber Security in India. In the absence of a dedicated and sincere approach, the already weak CyberLaw in India is going to collapse. A “Database” on the lines of Cyber Law Database of India by Perry4Law would also be relevant.
III. The Roads Ahead
The contemporary era of ICT is too complicated for the traditional State to handle single handedly. The State needs “external expertise” to meet effectively and efficiently the challenges of ICT. Indian Government must appreciate that we need to capatilise “collective expertise” and an “ideal public-private partnership” base in India for meeting the contemporary challenges of ICT. The Government alone cannot provide a viable solution to the problems associated with ICT. We have to take care of both technological as well as legal issues associated with the use of ICT. Thus, a Techno-Legal Base is the need of the hour. In short, ICT and Cyber Security in India is one particular Global Challenge that has recently emerged due to World events and Societal Changes and India cannot remain ignorant of it.
© Praveen Dalal. All rights reserved with the author. * Advocate, Arbitrator and Consultant, Supreme Court of India. Managing Partner-Perry4Law (First Techno-Legal and ICT Law Firm, New Delhi, India). LL.M, Ph.D –Cyber Forensics (Pursuing).
 Praveen Dalal “ICT Trends in India-2006”, http://unpan1.un.org/intradoc/groups/public/documents/APCITY/UNPAN025298.pdf
 Praveen Dalal, “ A journey towards collective expertise”, http://perry4law.blogspot.com/2006/12/journey-towards-collective-expertise.html
About Perry4Law: Perry4Law is the first ever Techno-Legal and ICT Law Firm of India, and perhaps one of the few, in the world; dictated by cutting-edge technology. The firm is the brainchild of young, dynamic and enthusiastic Techno-Legal experts, all holding at least Masters Degree from the Premier Institutions of Law in India. Since its inception, the Firm has conquered new horizons and set new parameters, in the legal industry and has been recognized, both at National and International level; for its invaluable contribution to the legal fraternity.
Perry4Law, first and exclusive Techno-Legal Firm in India; is dealing with the legal issues associated with the use of ICT worldwide and is actively engaged in advocating and using ICT for legal purposes including ODR and establishment of E-courts in India. Broadly speaking, its services include Corporate matters, International Trade, E-Governance, E-Commerce, Cyber Law, IPRs, Civil and Criminal litigation, Taxation services etc.
It has the privilege of being the most contemporary Techno-Legal Firm in the World that has acquired an expertise in the fields dominating the current Globalised and Information and Communication Technology guided World. It provided its valuable suggestions and recommendations to the Government of India on subjects like proposed amendments to the Information Technology Act, 2000 (IT Act, 2000), proposed Broadcasting Bill-06, Techno-Legal Security Requirements, etc. Its association with the esteemed Computer Crime Research Center, UNESCO, etc reaffirms its commitment to fight against Cyber Crimes and Misuse of ICT on both National and Global Level.
Source: Reclaiming India: A “Critical Analysis” of the “Policies and Strategies” of Indian Government, Public and Autonomous Bodies, etc. It provides “Suitable Policies and Strategies” to the Government so that skilled manpower and unshakable leaders can be produced in India. A special emphasis would be given to Indian Techno-Legal and ICT related Strategies including ICT and Cyber Security of India. It also aims at reducing Corruption by making public various maladministration and irregularities.
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