Cyber law is new phenomenon having emerged much after the offset of internet. Internet grew in completely unplanned and unregulated manner. Even the inventor of internet could not have really anticipated the scope and the far reaching consequence of cyber space. The growth rate of cyber space has been enormous.
The internet is growing rapidly and with the population of internet doubling roughly every 100 days, the cyber space is becoming the new preferred environment of the world with the spontaneous and almost phenomenal growth of cyber space, the new ticklish issues relating to various legal aspects of cyber space began a cropping up, in response to the absolutely complex and the newly emerging legal issues relating to cyber space, cyber law or the law of internet came into being the growth of cyber space has resulted in development of a new and highly specialized branch of law called cyber laws – laws of the internet and the worldwide there is no one exhaustive definition of the term”cyber law”.
However, simply put cyber law in is a term in which refer to all the legal regulatory aspect of internet and world wide web. Anything concern with or related to, or emanating from, any legal aspects or issues concerning any activity of Netizens and others, in cyber space comes within the ambit of cyber law.
Importance Of Cyber Law:
1) EMAIL: Email become valid and legal form of communication: From the perspective of E-commerce in india, this law contains many positive aspects. The provision for E-businesses would be that Email would now be valid and legal form of communication in our country that can be duly produce and approval in court of law.
2) Provide Legal Infrastructure: Companies shall now be able to carry out electronic commerce using the legal infrastructure provided by the Act.
3) Cover all Aspects of Cyberspace: Cyber law is important because it touches almost all aspects of transactions and activities on and concerning the Internet, the World Wide Web and Cyberspace. Initially it may seem that Cyber law is a very technical field and that it does not have any bearing to most activities in Cyberspace. But the actual truth is that nothing could be further than the truth. Whether the internet user realize it or not , every action and every reaction in Cyberspace has some legal and Cyber legal perspectives.
4) Provide Legal Framework For Transactional Activities: We need such laws so that people can perform purchase transaction over the Net through credit cards without fear of misuse. The act offers the much-needed legal framework so that information is not denied legal effect, validity or enforceability, solely on the ground that it is in
the form of electronic records.
5) Promote E-Governance: In view of the growth in transactions and communications carried out through electronic records, the Act seeks to empower government departments to accept filling, creating and retention of official documents in the digital format. The Act has also proposed legal framework for the authentication and origin of electronic records/communications through digital signature.
6) Enhance use of Electronic Form: This law enables the companies to file any form, application or any other document with any office, authority, body or agency owned or controlled by the appropriate Government in electronic form by means of such electronic form as may be prescribed by the appropriate Government.
7) Addresses Important Issues of Security: This law also addresses the important issues of security, which are so critical to the success of electronic transaction. The Act has given a legal definition to the concept of secure digital
signatures that could be required to have been passed through a system of a security procedure, as stipulated by the Government at a later date under the IT Act 2000, it shall now be possible for corporate to have statuary remedy in case if anyone breaks into their computer system or network and cause loss.
8) Origin of Electronic Records: The Act has also proposed a legal framework for the authentication and origin of electronic records communications through digital signature.
Cyber Laws in India (IT Act- 2000):
In may 2000, both the houses of the India Parliament passed the Information Technology Bill. The Bill received the assent of the President in August 2000 and came to be known as the Information Technology Act, 2000. Cyber laws are contained in the IT Act, 2000. This Act aims to provide the legal infrastructure for e-commerce in India and the cyber laws has major impact for e-business and the new economy in India.
So ,it is important to understand the various perspectives of the IT Act 2000 and what it occurs. The Information Technology Act, 2000 also aims to provide for the legal framework so that the legal activity is recorded to all electronic records and other activities carried out by electronic means. The Act states that unless otherwise agreed, an acceptance of contract may be expressed by electronic means of communication and the same shall have legal
validity and enforceability.
Some highlights of the Act are listed below:
1) Chapter II:
Chapter-II of the Act specifically stipulates that any subscriber may authenticate an electronic record by affixing his digital signature. It further states that any person can verify an electronic record by use of a public key of the subscriber.
2) Chapter III:
Chapter-III of the Act details about Electronic Governance and provides inter-alia amongst others that where any laws provides that information or any other matter shall be in writing or in the typewritten or printed form, then, notwithstanding anything contained in such law, such requirement shall be deemed to have been satisfied if such information or matter is rendered or made available in an electronic form; and accessible so as to be usable for a subsequent reference. The said chapter also details the legal recognition of Digital Signatures.
3) Chapter IV:
Chapter-IV of the said Act gives a scheme for Regulation of Certifying Authorities. The Act envisages a Controller of Certifying Authorities who shall perform the function of exercising supervision over the activities of the Certifying Authorities as also laying down specifying the various forms and content for recognizing foreign Certifying Authorities and it further details the various provisions for the issue of licenses issue Digital Signature Certificates.
4) Chapter VII:
Chapter –VII of the Act details about the scheme of things relating to Digital Signature Certificates. The duties of subscriber are also enshrined in the said Act.
Chapter-IX of the said Act talks about penalties and adjudication for various offences. The penalties for damage to computer, computer systems etc. has been fixed as damages by way of compensation not exceeding Rs. 1,00,00,000 to affected persons.
The Act talks of appointment of any officers not below the rank of a Director to the Government of India or an equivalent officer of state government as an adjudicating officer who shall adjudicate whether any person has made a contravention of any of the provisions of the said Act or rules framed there under. The said Adjudicating officer has been given the powers of Civil Court.
Chapter-X of the Act talks of the establishment of the Cyber Regulations Appellate Tribunal, Which shall be an appellate body where appeals against the orders passed by the Adjudicating Officers, shall be preferred.
Chapter-XI of the Act talks about various offences and the said offences shall be investigated only by a Police Officer not below the rank of the Deputy Superintendent of Police. These offences include tampering with computer source documents, publishing of information, which is obscene in electronic form, and hacking.