Saturday, March 2, 2013

Regulations And Guidelines For Effective Investigation Of Cyber Crimes In India

Cyber crimes are increasing at a rapid speed in India. However, cyber crimes investigation in India has still to be developed to tackle these cyber crimes effectively. As on date the cyber crime investigation capabilities of law enforcement agencies of India is still deficient and they need proper training in this regard.

The legal and judicial systems of India also need to adapt as per the contemporary information technology oriented society. However, a majority of cyber crimes in India are not reported at all. Even if some cyber crimes are reported, they are not properly investigated and very few such cyber crime cases reach to the court level.

In the absence of scientific evidence and knowledge and proper cyber crime investigation, there are very few cyber crimes convictions in India. In fact, the Supreme Court of India is hearing many Public Interest Litigations (PILs) in this regard.

In one such PIL the Supreme Court of India has issued notice to Centre to seek its views in this regard. The Supreme Court has sought response from the Centre on a PIL seeking its direction to the government to frame regulations and guidelines for effective investigation of cyber crimes in India.

The notice has been issued by a Three Judge Bench of Supreme Court headed by Chief Justice Altamas Kabir. The PIL alleges that the common people are being harassed by police due to lack of procedural safeguards in the prevalent system of cyber laws.

The PIL originated out of the allegations of Pune-based businessman Dilip Kumar Tulsidas Shah who claimed that he was harassed by the police in a cyber crime case in which he was not involved.

 The petitioner seeks the remedy of issuing a writ of Mandamus, order or direction to the Centre to frame an appropriate regulatory framework of rules, regulations and guidelines for effective investigation of cyber crimes, keeping in mind the fundamental rights of citizens.

The Petitioner also contends that there is a near total lack of procedural safeguards in the prevalent system of cyber crime investigation. Police harassment of citizens, whether out of intention or ignorance, is rampant, says the Petitioner.

The Bench after hearing his arguments issued notice and clubbed his plea along with other similar PIL pending before it.

At Perry4Law Organisation and Perry4Law’s Techno Legal Base (PTLB) we have been working in the direction of spreading public awareness regarding cyber law on the one hand and cyber crimes investigation on the other. PTLB is managing the exclusive techno legal Centre of Excellence for Cyber Crimes Investigation in India.

PTLB is also managing the exclusive techno legal Cyber and Hi-Tech Crimes Investigation and Training Centre (CHCIT) of India. A special emphasis upon preventing and punishing cyber crimes against women in India has been undertaken by PTLB. 

PTLB has also launched a techno legal initiative named Intelligence Agencies and Law Enforcement Technology in India. The aim of this initiative is to develop the techno legal capabilities of law enforcement and intelligence agencies of India.

Intelligence agencies and law enforcement agencies of India are actively looking towards adoption and use of information and communication technology (ICT) for their functioning.

Ambitious projects like Crime And Criminal Tracking Network and Systems (CCTNS) Project Of India, National Intelligence Grid (Natgrid) Project Of India, National Counter Terrorism Centre (NCTC) Of India, Central Monitoring System (CMS) Project of India, National Cyber Coordination Centre (NCCC) Of India, etc require techno legal expertise. Law enforcement agencies of India must be aware of both technical as well as legal requirements in order to derive maximum benefits out of these projects.

If either the Supreme Court or the Centre needs our assistance regarding formulating regulations and guidelines for effective investigation of cyber crimes in India, Perry4Law and PTLB would be glad to extend the same.

Source: CECSRDI.

Friday, February 8, 2013

Forensics Analysis Of Nokia’s Computer Used To Download Software In India

Nokia has been accused of violating income tax and transfer pricing laws of India. Nokia India has flatly denied these allegations and has been maintaining that it is complying with all the applicable laws of India.

In order to strengthen its allegations and prove its point, the income tax department officials paid a visit to Nokia India’s factory at Sriperumbudur, near Chennai, along with Central Forensic Science Laboratory (CFSL) officials from Hyderabad.

The idea was to verify and analyse Nokia India’s computers using cyber forensics methodologies that are suspected to be used for downloading software from parent company.

The verification started at 11:30 AM on Thursday and around 10-15 officials from the IT department along with two experts from the Central Forensic Science Labs were part of the verification, which lasted for almost seven hours.

The verification visit was triggered because during recording of statements in the last few weeks, Nokia officials gave different versions. The department sought a third party cyber expert to prove what Nokia did was wrong, and to strengthen the case, if it goes to a Court.

We at Perry4Law and Perry4Law’s Techno Legal Base (PTLB) believe that this is the right approach to gather digital evidence. The experience officials from the CFSL would consider all the aspects of cyber forensics, e-discovery, etc. Further, paper evidence scanning and e-discovery legal issues in India and optical character recognition (OCR) legal issues India should also be kept in mind by the CFSL officials.

The department is expected to raise demand anytime with Nokia for Rs 3,000 crore tax deducted at source (TDS) and if they don't compile with the law the department may consider freezing their bank accounts and their assets. The department is also alleging a transfer pricing violation of about Rs 10,000 crore.

According to the department, the Indian subsidiary of Finland-based handset manufacturer Nokia, has been downloading software from its parent company to manufacture mobile handsets at Sriperumbudur, near Chennai, but had not paid tax on royalty for downloading.