Internet Leading To Increase In Cyber Crime: Parliament Study

New Delhi: The hacking and defacing of websites in India has “highly perturbed” a Parliamentary Committee which examined the issue of cyber crimes and cyber security and found that 3,911 India’s websites were defaced or hacked upto June 2013 and majority of these which was around 2667 out of 3911 attacks were the ‘.in’ domain whose servers were in India.
In its 52nd Report, the Standing Committee on Information Technology tabled in Parliament on Wednesday found that while the usage of internet has facilitated transparency and greater accountability, it has at the same time led to increasing forms of cyber crime and cyber threat each day with newer challenges for data protection and security.
This assumes significance since the internet user base has increased to 100 million and total broadband subscriber base has increased to 12.69 million. The target for broadband connections in the current year is 22 million.
Today the country has 134 major ISPs, 10 million registered domain names of one million are  ‘.in’  domains and over 260 data centers all over the country.
In its 83-page report, the Committee chaired by Rao Inderjit Singh expressed concern over the consistent increase in cyber crime cases in the country during the last five years.
It said according to the record of  cyber-crime data maintained by the National Crime Records Bureau (NCRB), a total of 420, 966, 1791 and 2876 Cyber Crime cases were registered under the Information Technology Act during the years 2009, 2010, 2011 and 2012 respectively.
The report said that a total of 276, 356, 422 and 601 cases were registered under Cyber Crime related sections of Indian Penal Code (IPC)  during  2009, 2010, 2011 and 2012. respectively.
The Committee found it disquieting that the quantum of financial loss and privacy related cases in the country due to cyber attack and fraud in the last few years have increased.
The Report said that according to the Reserve Bank of India in the last five years though the number of fraud cases reported by Banks on account of ATM Debit Cards/Credit Cards and Internet have decreased from 15018 in 2010 to 8322 in 2012, yet the amount involved had increased from Rs 40.48 crore to /Rs 52.67 crore in 2012.
However, the Committee was of the view that the reported number of cases involving financial fraud due to cyber related cases is just the tip of the iceberg as a number of cases go unnoticed and unreported.
The Committee expressed unhappiness over the involvement of too many agencies maintaining separate data on cyber crime cases and felt that there should be one single, centralized cell or agency to deal with all cases of cyber crime or threat in the country.
Having one agency to look after cyber crimes and cyber threats, the Committee said would not only help the Department in knowing the pattern of the crime but also prevent recurrence of same kind of crimes with newer strategies.
It felt that the Department of Electronics and Information Technology (DIETY) should work in this direction and apprise the Committee of the action taken in this regard.
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