Tackling cyber crimes

No less threatening and devastating and unsettling are cyber crimes than terrorism and terror related crimes. These are two major source of unsettling the modern society. That is the reason why world powers, without an exception, are deeply concerned as to how the fast spreading menace of cyber crime can be controlled. It must be said that misuse of cyber facility has been widespread in Kashmir and other terrorist infested parts of the country. It is true that some times during the height of insurgency or an extraordinary event in which there is mass involvement, the Government orders shutting down of the internet or even the mobile services temporarily. But that is not a foolproof remedy of the problem.
The Home Ministry has taken serious note of cyber crime and has consequently decided to establish an apex coordination centre in New Delhi besides asking the State Governments to establish cyber coordination cells at their headquarters with a network of cells in all districts of the each State. This is a clear indication that the threat has spread far and wide and the miscreants have found ways and means of attacking the social media for subversion. Initially, the Home Ministry had released an amount of 83 crore rupees for setting up of a cyber forensic training laboratory-cum-training centre for police officials in each state. The funds were given under the Cyber Crime Prevention against Women and Children Scheme, a Home Ministry official said. But the Home Ministry appears to have widened the scope of operation and going beyond the crime against women, it has taken into its purview the entire social spectrum owing to the fact that social media has been almost hijacked by the cyber criminals. The apex centre to be set up in New Delhi is given the name Indian Cyber Crime Coordination Centre (I4C).
Cyber crime cases pose technical, legal and administrative challenges in investigation which require strengthening of the institutional mechanism.
Phishing, scanning or probing, website intrusions and defacements, virus or malicious code and denial of service attacks are some types of cyber crimes. On social media cyber attackers circulate pornography, false news, abuse of women and anti-national propaganda. In recent days it has been found that social media is misused to spread communal hatred. In Kashmir social media was very adversely exploited to spread rumours and canards which had to be repudiated and rejected.  Websites are defaced and sensitive material is pilfered. These are some of the big crimes that have become rampant. Therefore, the Government cannot close its eyes to this challenge. The Ministry has already created a new wing — Cyber and Information Security Division — to deal with the new-age challenge. The move came in the wake of 1, 44,496 cyber security attacks observed in the country during 2014-16. Over a period of time, there has been a phenomenal increase in use of computers, smart phones and internet. With this increase, cyber crimes have emerged as a major challenge for law enforcement agencies.
This is an urgent call and we hope that our State will not falter in implementing the preventive measures as enunciated by the communication from the Union Home Ministry. Owing to widespread network established by militant organizations in the State, it becomes all the more important for our State to take the time by forelock and pursue the task of incepting anti cyber crime cells at the headquarter and at district headquarters only. This will enable the functionaries of the cell to get into close liaison with the police and home department functionaries. The Home Ministry has given clear indication that clandestine websites tacitly functioning against the interests of the State and society will have to be blocked if and when needed. Habitual hackers and miscreants will have to be identified and dealt with in accordance with the law.
Reflecting seriously on the step that the Home Ministry is taking, one feels that for the purpose of national security, the cyber cell has to be connected to the police stations in the districts and at the headquarter also. After all the police are suppose to deal with the crimes and they have to be in the loop. Maybe coordination process is felt important and that should not pose any major hurdle in proper functioning of the contemplated anti-cyber crime monitoring cells.