BIRTH OF INTERNET LITIGATION
The United States defense department’s ARPANET began the internet and designed it to link computer networks to various radio and satellite networks with all over the world. The first judicial opinion to mention the internet was United States V. Morris (1991)
The concept of law refers to the rule of law which is required to protect the human being in the society. Applying it to the cyberspace we can say that computers are impuissant, so the rule of law is required to preserve and safeguard them against cyber crimes.
Cyber crime is an unlawful acts wherein the computer is either a tool or a target or both. Cyber crimes involves criminal activities that are traditional in nature, like fraud, defamation, forgery, theft and mischief and all these criminal activities are subject to the Indian Penal Code. The abuse and misuse of computer networks have also given birth to a new age crime that are addressed by The Information Technology Act, 2000. Cyber crimes can be categorized in two ways
- Using a computer to attack other computers that is using computer as a target. e.g. Hacking, E-mail bombing, Virus attacks etc.
- Using computer as a weapon that is using computer to commit real world crime. e.g. Cyber terrorism, Credit card fraud, IPR violations etc.
MODES OF COMMITTING CYBER CRIMES
- Hacking i.e. unauthorized access to computer systems or networks without the permission of rightful owner of the system. Every act committed towards breaking into a computer system or network is hacking. Hacking a web server of another persons website is called as web hijacking. Hackers either write or use ready made computer programs to attack the target computer. Some hackers hack for personal monetary gains such as stealing credit card information or transferring money from various bank accounts to their own accounts.
- Virus attacks it refers to a program which has the capability to affect other programs and make copies of itself and spread it into other programs is called virus.
- E-mails related crimes like e-mail spoofing which refers to emails that appears to be originated from one source but is been actually sent from another source. E-mail spamming is another problem which refers to sending of e-mails with malicious codes to thousands of users. E-mail bombing refers to repeatedly sending of identical e-mails by the abusers to a particular address.
- Trojan attack are pieces of malware allowing a hacker to remote access a computer system. They are not self-replicating and are not automated in that they need direction interaction with a hacker to fulfill their purpose.
The Information Technology Act, 2000 was undoubtedly a welcome step at a time when there was no legislation on this specialized field. The Act however during its application has proved to be inadequate to a certain extents. The loopholes in the acts was that the legislation was passed, without sufficient public debate which did not really serve the desired purpose. According to experts the reason for the inadequacy of the legislation was because of the parliament which passed this act quite hurriedly and it was also not given sufficient time for public debate.