Battling cyber crime: Keeping data safe from prying eyes

India saw 457% rise in cybercrime in five years: Assocham-NEC study

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Crime has been transforming itself to match the technological development happening across the globe. Since the invention of computers and internet, crime has evolved from its physical version to a digital one. Introduction of IT Act in India in 2000, amended in 2008, was the turning point where the government started focusing on the digital side of crimes, that is, cybercrime.

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According to a recent Assocham-NEC study titled Digital Policing – Smart Policing for Public Safety, India has witnessed 457% rise in cybercrime incidents under the Information Technology (IT) Act, 2000 from 2011 to 2016. Between 2012-17, the number of internet users in India grew at a CAGR of 44% making it number three globally after USA and China. IT security firm Symantec ranked India among top five countries to be affected by cybercrime.

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A robust three-tired structure comprising Central Cyber Cell, District Cyber Cells and Police Station Cyber Teams across the entire jurisdiction of National Capital Territory has been put in place to deal with cybercrimes and to handle the growing menace of cyber frauds and online harassment, using technologies like Artificial Intelligence, Big Data Analytics, Facial Recognition, IoT etc., to identify and catch suspects/criminals. However, implementation of these technologies is not on a national level but on a state level, which makes it very important for the central government to fund and support state level law enforcement agencies to utilise technologies to upgrade their policing methods, noted the joint study.

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The study said that implementing new policing technologies will enable access to personal information, assisting in the delivery of personalised and better public services. It will help in fighting crime, protecting public security, reducing burden on businesses and citizens and tackling social exclusion through early intervention.

The government and multiple law enforcement agencies have taken the lead in curbing growing cyber crime. In addition to establishing cyber labs and training the officers, additional development in terms of detecting and resolving cyber crime has to be added in the current arsenal of the law enforcers.

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