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SANSAD TV: 75 YEARS- LAWS THAT SHAPED INDIA- THE INFORMATION TECHNOLOGY ACT, 2000

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Introduction:

To fulfill the changing needs of the cyber security and e-commerce. The Information Technology Act was passed in Parliament in 2000.

Objectives of the Act:

  • The Information Technology Act, 2000 provides legal recognition to the group action done via electronic exchange of information and alternative electronic suggests that of communication or electronic commerce transactions.
  • This also involves the utilization of alternatives to a paper-based technique of communication and knowledge storage to facilitate the electronic filing of documents with government agencies.
  • Further, this act amended the Indian legal code 1860, the Indian proof Act 1872, the Bankers’ Books proof Act 1891, and also the bank of India Act 1934.
  • The objectives of the Act are as follows:
    • Grant legal recognition to any or all transactions are done via electronic exchange of information or alternative electronic suggests that of communication or e-commerce, intact of the sooner paper-based technique of communication.
    • Offer legal recognition to digital signatures for the authentication of any data or matters requiring legal authenticationFacilitate the electronic filing of documents with Government agencies and conjointly departments.Facilitate the electronic storage of information.
    • Offer legal sanction and conjointly facilitate the electronic transfer of funds between banks and money establishments.Grant legal recognition to bankers underneath the proof Act, 1891, and also the bank of India Act, 1934, for keeping the books of accounts in electronic kind.

Features of the Information Technology Act, 2000

  • All electronic contracts created through secure electronic channels were legally valid.
  • Legal recognition for digital signatures.
  • Security measures for electronic records and conjointly digital signatures are in place.
  • A procedure for the appointment of adjudicating officers for holding inquiries underneath the Act is finalized.
  • Provision for establishing a Cyber restrictive Appellant judicature underneath the Act.
  • Further, this judicature can handle all appeals created against the order of the Controller or Adjudicating Officer.
  • It charms against the order of the Cyber Appellant judicature is feasible solely within the court.
  • Digital Signatures uses an uneven cryptosystem and conjointly a hash operate.Provision for the appointment of the Controller of Certifying Authorities (CCA) to license and regulate the operating of Certifying Authorities. The Controller acts as a repository of all digital signatures.
  • The Act applies to offences or contraventions committed outside India.Senior law enforcement officials and alternative officers will enter any public place and search and arrest while not warrant.Provisions for the constitution of a Cyber laws committee to advise the Central.

The flaws of IT Act 2000 are:

  • Lack of Transparency:
    • Section 69A of the IT Act.:
    • Section 69A grants to the government the power to issue directions to intermediaries for blocking access to any information that it considers prejudicial to, among other things, the sovereignty and integrity of India, national security, or public order.
    • Section 69A (3) envisages a jail sentence for up to seven years for intermediaries who fail to comply.
    • In 2009, the government also issued “Blocking Rules”, which set up the procedure for blocking (including regular review by government committees), and also stated that all requests and complaints would remain strictly confidential.
  • Weak on data protection:
    • The bill has provisions for against wrongful loss or wrongful gain but does not protect the privacy. Hence, it does not prevent companies from selling or sharing consumer data with others.
  • Privacy issues:
    • The IT Act also doesn’t address privacy issues – privacy is now a fundamental right and the law needs to specifically address privacy concerns, but that’s not the case.
  • Poor protection of cybersecurity:
    • The Indian IT Act is not a cybersecurity law and therefore does not deal with the nuances of cybersecurity.
    • Indian citizens have been victims to numerous instances of data breach and privacy violations – take for instance the Cambridge Analytica incident, or the Aadhaar account breach of 1.1 billion citizens, or for that matter the 2018 personal data leak incident of 5 lakh Google+ users.
  • Lack of expertise:
    • regular police personnel, specifically any officer holding the rank of inspector, are responsible for investigating nefarious online activities. The difficulty that arises here is that cybercrimes are a nuanced form of criminal activity that require years of specialised training and a deep understanding of technology to probe adequately.