Rising cybercrime and infrastructure gaps in India

Priyanka 'Saurabh'
India is the second largest online market in the world. Although the advancement of technology and the Internet has brought with it all the associated benefits, there has also been an increase in cybercrime affecting people globally. According to the National Crime Records Bureau (NCRB), 50,035 cases of cyber crime were registered in 2020. Cybercrime is on the rise in India with the increasing use of Information and Communication Technology (ICT). It is defined as a crime where a computer is the object of a crime or is used as a tool to commit a crime. Cybercrimes are at an all-time high, affecting individuals, businesses, and countries.
There are many factors behind this if we look at the shortcomings in the infrastructure to deal with cyber crimes, there is no procedural code to investigate cyber or computer-related crimes. Half-hearted efforts have been made by the States to recruit technical staff to deal with cyber crimes. Only technically qualified personnel can obtain and analyze digital evidence. The Information Technology (IT) Act, 2000 emphasizes that offenses registered under the Act should be investigated by a police officer, not below the rank of an Inspector. Districts have a limited number of police Inspectors, and most area investigations are carried out by Sub-Inspectors.
Cryptocurrency-related crimes are under-reported as the ability of laboratories to solve such crimes is limited due to poor standards. Most of the cyber crimes are National with inter-regional jurisdiction. Police still have to rely on the Cyber Tipline Report on Online Child Sexual Abuse Material (CSAM) from the National Center for Missing and Exploited Children (NCMEC), a non-profit agency in the United States. Most equipment and technology systems are just as vulnerable to cyber threats as any other connected system. Although the Government has set up the National Critical Information Infrastructure Protection Centre, it is yet to identify and implement measures to protect critical information infrastructure.
The cyber forensic laboratories of the States have not advanced with the advent of new technologies. Crimes related to crypto-currency are under-reported because the ability to solve such crimes remains limited.
(To be contd)