OVERVIEW OF CYBER LAWS IN INDIA

Introduction

"Cyber" is a prefix used to describe a person, thing, or idea as part of the computer and information age. Taken from kybernetes, Greek word for "steersman" or "governor," it was first used in cybernetics, a word coined by
Norbert Wiener and his colleagues. The virtual world of internet is known as cyberspace and the laws governing this area are known as Cyber laws and all the netizens of this space come under the ambit of these laws as it carries a kind of universal jurisdiction. Cyber law can also be described as that branch of law that deals with legal issues related to use of inter-networked information technology. In short, cyber law is the law governing computers and the internet.

The growth of Electronic Commerce has propelled the need for vibrant and effective regulatory mechanisms which would further strengthen the legal infrastructure, so crucial to the success of Electronic Commerce. All these regulatory mechanisms and legal infrastructures come within the domain of Cyber law.

Cyber law is important because it touches almost all aspects of transactions and activities on and involving the internet, World Wide Web and cyberspace.

Every action and reaction in cyberspace has some legal and cyber legal perspectives.
Cyber law encompasses laws relating to –

  • Cyber crimes
  • Electronic and digital signatures
  • Intellectual property
  • Data protection and privacy


History of Internet and World Wide Web

The Internet is a global system of interconnected computer networks that use the standardized Internet Protocol Suite (TCP/IP). It is a network of networks that consists of millions of private and public, academic, business, and government networks of local to global scope that are linked by copper wires, fiber-optic cables, wireless connections, and other technologies. The Internet carries a vast array of information resources and services, most notably the inter-linked hypertext documents of the World Wide Web (WWW) and the infrastructure to support electronic mail, in addition to popular services such as online chat, file transfer and file sharing, online gaming, and Voice over Internet Protocol (VoIP) person-to-person communication via voice and video. The origins of the Internet dates back to the 1960s when the United States funded research projects of its military agencies to build robust, fault-tolerant and distributed computer networks. This research and a period of civilian funding of a new U.S. backbone by the National Science Foundation spawned worldwide participation in the development of new networking technologies and led to the commercialization of an international network in the mid 1990s, and resulted in the following popularization of countless applications in virtually every aspect of modern human life.



The terms Internet and World Wide Web are often used in everyday speech without much distinction. However, the Internet and the World Wide Web are not one and the same. The Internet is a global data communications system. It is a hardware and software infrastructure that provides connectivity between computers. In contrast, the Web is one of the services communicated via the Internet. It is a collection of interconnected documents and other resources, linked by hyperlinks and Uniform Resource Locator [URLs].



The World Wide Web was invented in 1989 by the English physicist Tim Berners-Lee, now the Director of the World Wide Web Consortium, and later assisted by Robert Cailliau, a Belgian computer scientist, while both were working at CERN in Geneva, Switzerland. In 1990, they proposed building a "web of nodes" storing "hypertext pages" viewed by "browsers" on a network and released that web in December.



Overall Internet usage has seen tremendous growth. From 2000 to 2009, the number of Internet users globally rose from 394 million to 1.858 billion. By 2010, 22 percent of the world's population had access to computers with 1 billion Google searches every day, 300 million Internet users reading blogs, and 2 billion videos viewed daily on YouTube.



After English (27%), the most requested languages on the World Wide Web are Chinese (23%), Spanish (8%), Japanese (5%), Portuguese and German (4% each), Arabic, French and Russian (3% each), and Korean (2%). By region, 42% of the world's Internet users are based in Asia, 24% in Europe, 14% in North America, 10% in Latin America and the Caribbean taken together, 6% in Africa, 3% in the Middle East and 1% in Australia/Oceania.


More Topics

1. Need for Cyber law

2. Cyber crime on the rise

3. Important terms related to cyber law

4. Cyber law in India

5. Need for cyber law in India

6. History of cyber law in India

7. Information Technology Act, 2000

8. Salient features of the Information Technology (Amendment) Act, 2008

9. Rules notified under the Information Technology Act, 2000

10. Overview of other laws amended by the IT Act, 2000 - India Panel Code 1860

11. Indian Evidence Act, 1872

12. National Policy on Information Technology 2012

13. Applicability and Scheme of the INFORMATION TECHNOLOGY ACT, 2000

14. Digital signature and Electronic signature

15. Digital Signature under the IT Act, 2000

16. Electronic Signature

17. E-Governance

18. Attribution, Acknowledgement and Dispatch of Electronic Records

19. Certifying Authorities

20. Root Certifying Authority of India (RCAI)





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