Cybercrime and cyberlaw
Cybercrime encompasses any criminal act dealing with computers and networks. It also includes traditional crimes conducted through the Internet.
Though Bangladesh is a poor country but nowadays because of mobile phone internet service, the internet is now becoming available to almost all the districts of our country. People started to know what is the internet and what the cyber world is. In Bangladesh, the rate of an internet user is increasing rapidly. At present we have so many cyber cafes in our country. The young generations are badly addicted to internet and computer. They love to spend lots of time on the computer. The internet has become a very important part of our lives.
There are two sides to a coin. Similarly, the internet also has advantages and disadvantages. The Internet can be used as a mass destructive weapon. By using internet terrorist can destroy one country.
Some examples of cybercrime?
Following are some examples of cybercrime:
• Hacking of computer systems and networks
• Cyber pornography
• Financial crimes such as siphoning of money from banks, credit card frauds, money laundering
• Online Gambling
• Intellectual property crimes such as theft of computer source code, software piracy, copyright infringement, trademark violations
• Harassments such as cyberstalking, cyber defamation, indecent and abusing mails
• Cyber frauds such as forgery of documents including currency and any other documents
• Launching of virus and worms
• Cyber attacks and cyber terrorism
• Sale of illegal articles such as narcotics, weapons, wildlife, etc.
Different types of cybercrime:-
Cybercrimes can be basically divided into 3 major categories:
1. Cybercrimes against persons
Cybercrimes committed against persons include various crimes like transmission of Child-pornography, harassment of anyone with the use of a computer such as e-mail.
2. Cybercrimes against property
The second category of Cyber-crimes is crimes against all forms of property. There are certain offences which affect a person’s property which is as follows:
• Intellectual Property Crimes
• Cyber Squatting
• Cyber Vandalism
• Hacking Computer System
• Transmitting Virus
• Cyber Trespass
• Internet Time Thefts
3. Cybercrimes against government
The third category of Cyber-crimes relates to Cybercrimes against Government. There are certain offences done by a group of persons intending to threaten international governments by using internet facilities. It includes:
• Cyber Terrorism
• Cyber Warfare
• Distribution of pirated software
• Possession of Unauthorized Information
What is cyberlaw?
Cyberlaw deals with the legal issues of internet usage and all devices connected over the network, their proper use in order to prevent and control cybercrimes.
To control the misuse of the technologies in order to protect nations/states and bring the criminals within the jurisdiction, an effective cyber law can play a vital role in ensuring that national and global criminals are fairly and successfully tried and judged for their crimes.
Importance of specific cyberlaw:-
The Penal code of Bangladesh contains very few provision regarding cybersquatting. But in case of cybercrime like Hacking, Internet time thefts, Email bombing- there is nothing contained in our Penal Code. So it can be said that it is not possible for our government to control cybercrime by using some provision of the Penal Code. To control cybercrime it is necessary to enact special law which only deals with cyber-related matters.
Cyberlaw in Bangladesh:-
There are not enough laws in Bangladesh which may punish the cybercriminals. In Bangladesh, there is a law named “The Information & Communication Technology Act, 2006”.
The Information and Communication Technology Act, 2006
The Government of Bangladesh passed the Information and Communication Technology Act in 2006. It is enacted by the government of Bangladesh with a view to consolidate Computer related matters and also prosecute computer and computer network related offence. This statute contains several provisions regarding damage to computer and computer system. According to the ICT Act the cybercrime shall be treated as a non-cognizable offence that is why the police can’t arrest the criminals without a warrant except some cases.
But the problem of this Act is this Act deals with so many things. The Act is made to cover all the information technology-related matters. But it is not possible to cover all the things by implementing just only one Act. In order to control cybercrime, we need to have one specific cyber law in our country.
List of cybercrimes under the ICT Act
According to sections 54 to 67 of the ICT Act, 2006 the followings shall be treated as cybercrime:
• Unauthorized copying, extracting and downloading of any data, database
• Introduction of virus
• Damage and disruption to a computer system and computer network
• Denial of access to the authorized personnel to computer
• Providing assistance to make it possible to commit to crime
• Hacking with the computer system
• Tampering computer source documents
• Electronic forger for the purpose of cheating and harming reputation
• Using a forged Electronic record
• Publication of digital signature certificate for the fraudulent purpose
• Confiscation of computer, network etc
• Publication of information which is obscene in electronic form
• Misrepresentation and suppressing material facts for obtaining a digital signature certificate
• Breach of confidentiality and privacy
• Publishing false digital signature certificate
Section 68 of the Information & Communication Technology Act, 2006 has declared the formation of a special tribunal named “Cyber Tribunal”.
Due to the scarcity of trained specialist assisting the court it has become very much impossible for the judge to trace the crime as well as the criminal and to punish him. There is only a Cyber Tribunal in Dhaka City established under section 82 of the said Act. This tribunal has not yet reward any punishment to any criminal. Out of this till to the establishment of Cyber Tribunal in the district court the Session Judge has the cognizance to trial such kind of crime under section 74 of the said Act.
In Bangladesh, there is a statutory authority named BTRC which perform as a watchdog in cyber protection but it is yet to fulfil its promises. It has the authority to conduct mobile courts with the help of other government organs for the speedy trial of such kind of crime.
How to prevent cybercrime:-
The prevention of cybercriminal activities is the most critical aspect in the fight against cybercrime. It is mainly based on the concepts of awareness and information sharing. A proper security posture is the best defence against cybercrime. Every single user of technology must be aware of the risks of exposure to cyber threats and should be educated about the best practices to adopt in order to reduce their “attack surface” and mitigate the risks. For this purpose the following recommendations may be proposed:
• Education on CyberCrimes
• Creating Cyber Employment
• Providing Training
• Cooperation to Government
• Identification of Cyber Criminals and Ensuring Punishment
• Drawing Consciousness of the people
Some penalties under the ICT Act for different offences:-
1. Whoever commits the offence of publishing fake, obscene or defaming information in the electric form shall be punished with imprisonment for a term which may extend to minimum 7 years and maximum 14 years and with fine which may extend to 10 lacs Taka or with both.
2. Whoever commits the offence of hacking with computer system shall be punished with imprisonment for a term which may extend to minimum 7 years and maximum 14 years or with fine which may extend to 10 lacs Taka or with both.
3. Whoever commits the offence of unauthorized access to protected systems shall be punished with imprisonment for a term which may extend to minimum 7 years and maximum 14 years or with fine which may extend to 10 lacs Taka or with both.
4. Any person who commits disclosure of confidentiality and privacy shall be punished with imprisonment for a term which may extend to 2 years or with fine which may extend to 2 lacs Taka or with both.
5. Any person who aids the committing of an offence as stated above shall be punished with the punishment provided for the core offence.
Cybercrime is increasing day by day but our government is trying to protect. Every citizen should also be very careful about it. As technology advances and more people rely on the internet to store sensitive information such as banking or credit card information, criminals are going to attempt to steal that information. Cybercrime is becoming more of a threat to people across the world. Raising awareness about how information is being protected and the tactics criminals use to steal that information is important in today’s world. Anybody who uses the internet for any reason can be a victim and that is why it is important to be aware of how one is being protected while online.
We hope our government would take proper initiative to get rid of the problems for ensuring a cybercrime free peaceful society.
Writer: Law for Nations. Email: firstname.lastname@example.org, website: www.lawfornations.com, Mobile: 01842459590.