Karnataka High Court Admits Petition against Youtube.com..May30 2007
A bench consisting of the Chief Justice of the High Court of Karnataka, Honourable Sri Cyriac Joseph and Honourable Justice B.S.Patil today admitted a petition filed by Digital Society Foundation, Na.Vijayashankar and Satyhachethan, against youtube.com and ordered notices to be served on the Union of India (Ministry of Information Technology), youtube.com, Google, Cert-In, ISPAI and Gautam Prasad (Resident of USA), for action to stop the publication of a video on youtube.com denigrating Mahatma Gandhi. The petition has prayed for blocking of the video and for establishment of a system to deal with similar issues arising in future.Report in CIOL : Report in HT
Delhi Police Creates database of Criminals on the Web
In a significant step towards effective e-Governance, Delhi Police have reportedly placed the dossier of criminals available on the web to its authorised officials. This is expected to help investigating officers in individual police stations to access the information without the formality of contacting the respective police stations and waiting for response. Report in expressindia
Spam Mails Increase by 37% despite CAN-SPAM Act
According to a survey conducted in US, despite the introduction of CAN-SPAM act, users reported an increase in SPAM by 37% since the introduction of the CAN-SPAM Act in 2004. This however need not be considered as a failure of the regulation. It is estimated that the internet population grew by 208% between 2000 and 2007. The increase in the number of internet users between 2004 and 2007 and the growing use of broadband could itself be a cause of this increase. The regulation has made bulk spammers more accountable. It has also enabled better spam filters to counter the menace.
Indian legislators who have proposed an amendment to ITA-2000 (Amendment Bill now before the Parliament for approval as on 28th May 2007) have deliberately refrained from passing any legislation to prevent Spam. Though the Telecom Regulatory Authority has taken a few good steps to stop spamming of SMS messages and telephone calls, the Ministry of Communications and Information Technology is maintaining a pro-industry face by refusing to legislate against Spam. We need to wait for a change of heart at the Ministry. Details of US Survey in nesfactor.com
Cyber Crimes @web 2.0..Article in Data Quest
While the number of cyber crime instances has been constantly growing over the last few years, the past year and a half, in particular, has seen a rapid spurt in the pace of cyber crime activities...However, actual numbers continue to elude, considering the fact that a majority of the cases go unreported. Most victims, especially the corporates, continue to downplay on account of the fear of negative publicity thereby failing to give a correct picture of the cyber crime scene in the country. According to Cyber law expert Na Vijayashankar (popularly known as Naavi), it is difficult to measure the growth of Cyber Crimes by any statistics, the reason being that a majority of cyber crimes don't get reported...dataquest article
Webinar on Cyber Crimes in Everyday Life
ITPF (IT Professional's Forum) is launching its Webinar services on 25th May 2007 with the inaugural virtual talk from Naavi, on "Cyber Crimes in Everyday Life". The webinar would be available from 1600 hours IST to 1700 hours IST. This presentation will introduce some of the day to day crimes to which Netizens are exposed. It will also highlight the need for due diligence and the concept of "Developing Ethical IT Professionals as a means of Information Security". Participation is by registration and the entry is limited. Nominations can be sent through this registration link : Click here
Karnataka E-Registration System.. an analysis.. K.R.Shivashankar..May 23,2007
Karnataka is one of the few states in India where procedure for registration of documents is completely digitized. K R Shivashankar, Cyber Law practitioner from Mysore takes an analytical look at the system... Details
IPR ..Is it Losing Society Support?
Intellectual Property Right is one of the regulatory features which have been most abused in the current days. As commercial organizations use Copyright law to prosecute minor children downloading songs on the Internet and US Citizens take patents on what Indian Rishis wrote long time back the society is coming to start detesting the provisions of IPR for the restrictive aspects inherent in the law.What is the remedy for the fast deteriorating respect for IPR?. If you have a view, you can submit it here at naavi.org for publication.A more detailed paper if any can also be submitted to International Journal of Technology Management and International Journal of Intellectual Property Management which is bringing out a joint special issue on the theme. Related Article
Google to Digitize Ancient Scriptures in Mysore
Mysore University has announced that Google has been entrusted with the task of digitizing 8 lakh ancient records in the form of books and palm leaves in the library of the University. Most of these are of historic and scientific significance and will be of immense value.
While the effort to digitize the books is welcome, there are certain reservations which need to be expressed ..
We urge the Mysore University to ensure that traditional knowledge is not lost due to mismanagement of security of the scripts. The release of the information for the digitization process should be covered by a "Techno Legal Security Blanket". Preferably the University has to form a committee of Information Security Experts to ensure that Google does not create exclusive rights for itself on the material...Details
Credit Card Consumers Set to Fight Back
Thanks to the determined efforts of Mr Giddappa, General Secretary, Credit Card Holder's Association, Bangalore, Credit Card users who are being systematically cheated by Credit Card Issuing Banks now have a hope to fight back. It is a commonly known fact that many Credit Card issuing Banks deliberately overcharge their customers on various accounts. If contested, the excesses are reversed. If the consumer is one of those who is too busy to check his statement properly, the charge stays. Customers also never know whether the interest charges are calculated correctly. If Banks can cheat their customers on service charges and the like, can they be expected not to cheat them on interest calculation?
While we do receive a number of Cyber Crime references from Credit Card users about online fraudulent use and refusal of the credit card issuing Banks to charge back the amount, the attempted fraud committed by Banks through over charging is a crime under IPC which the Card users can take up with the Police. Over charging and causing annoyance to the customer may also be considered as "Deficiency in Service" and action initiated under the Consumer Protection Act.
Additionally, if the Credit Card issuing Banks refuse to accept Charge Back without valid reason and start threatening action for non payment, users may approach the Police for action against the Bank for "Threatening Physical harm". Any action by the recovery agent to abuse the card holder or his family members or hold physical threats can be considered as a crime by his principal namely the Bank, and card holders can launch criminal complaints against the respective Bank Managers and the CEO of the Bank. Complaint should also be made to the Reserve Bank of India for action against the Chairman of the Bank if no action is taken.
The Credit card Holder's Association is extending help to customers on whom the Card Issuing Banks have launched unfair attacks for delayed payment of dues. Related Article in TOI
Naavi.org advises all Credit Card holders in Bangalore to attend the All India conference organized by the association on May 28th, and share there problems. We also recommend all Credit Card holders to become members of the Credit Card Holder's Association and ensure that they collectively fight against any organized attempt to exploit the Credit Card Consumers.
Mr Giddappa can be contacted here: Website E mail Phone: 080-22129894
Surprises in Store for Vista Buyers
Microsoft is credited with bringing Computers within the reach of common man by simplifying the access through the user friendly interface of windows. Over the years successive versions of Windows OS captured the imagination of users to the extent that today Windows OS has a market share bordering on monopoly. This success itself has another dimension under which one has to be wary of the enormous power that Microsoft enjoys over the IT dependent world. Imagine one day that all Computers with Windows software stops working. Then the world may stop working. There could be chaos of unimaginable extent.
With the latest versions of the Windows OS, Microsoft maintains a backdoor through which it is possible either for Microsoft itself to disable all Windows OS computers or for a terrorist to gain control of the Microsoft central nervous system and thereby cause the global computer dependent society crash.
It is in this context that the Vista EULA has to be examined in depth to understand the extent to which Vista takes control of the user's systems and the conditions imposed on the user in the guise of "Copyright Protection". Mr K.S.Sudheer, Cyber Law Consultant from Mysore presents his analysis. Details
Comments are welcome
Online Harassment of Women
Text messaging, e-mails and online discussion boards have made women vulnerable in ways like never before.
The Internet and the mobile phones may appear to provide a veil of immunity for the perpetrators of cyber harassment; but according to cyber law experts this is a myth. N. Vijayashankar, who assisted the Cell in a few cyber harassment cases, says digital evidence is as powerful as physical evidence. The Cyber Crime Archival Centre, promoted by Mr. Vijayashankar, offers a way to record and preserve digital evidence. ...Detailed Article in Hindu
Cyber Law Consultancy Center at Mysore
A Cyber Law Consultancy Center Shankar and Shankar has been started at Mysore under the leadership of a leading advocate Sri K.R.Shivashankar in association with a advocate K.S.Sudheer and Naavi. Simultaneously, a branch of Cyber Law College has also been commissioned at Mysore.
Stop Public Looting through Unscrupulous Credit Card operators
Indian Credit Card issuing banks have been looting the public through various kinds of misrepresentations and frauds. The fraud appears in various forms such as a) charging of excess interest, b) charging of excess interest on past borrowings when instalment payment offer is used c) Charging of preclosure charges at an exhorbitant rate d) Charging of unsolicited Insurance and travelling schemes e) Floating bogus reward schemes and special offers etc. Naavi.org has been highlighting some of these factors in the past. Now the Credit Cardholder's association of India has started a major campaign against Credit Card misuse by starting customer help control rooms in Bangalore. The association has made an estimate that over Rs 6000 crores have been unfairly charged on the Credit Card consumers in the last few years by the Credit Card issuing Banks.
The Reserve Bank of India has in the past shown some concern but has not followed it up.
The Government of India is a party to the Credit Card fraud since they collect "Service/Interest Tax" on the interest and other charges made by the Credit Card companies including the excess charges made.
In the light of the above, there is a need for a strong consumer movement and the CCHAI fufills this need. The Association is also expected to open control centers at different cities so that more and more consumers can get their grievances redressed.We welcome this development and wish the office bearers lead by Secretary Mr C.V.Giddappa all success in their efforts. The CCHAI helpline numbers in Bangalore and Hyderabad are 080-22129894 and 040-27632525 and the public may use them when they need the assistance. The contact address at Bangalore is 10, Cubbonpet Main Road (HMS Complex) 2nd Floor, Bangalore 560002.
We also request the association to take up the following two demands.1. Abolition of the Pre-Closure Charges for any loans 2. Provision of annual statements of accounts on all loan accounts with details of interest charged. 3. Showing of interest calculation details with products in every credit card statements.4. Honouring of Charge back requests from Customers without demur 5.Subject all credit card disputes to arbitration clause.
Naavi's online Arbitration Center www.arbitration.in proposes to open a separate division for Credit Card disputes.
Related Article: The Hindu , tmcnet
A New Cyber Crime Reported from Ludhiana
In what should be a shocking revelation, one scientist from Ludhiana has found that a mail had been sent to a set of his friends that he has lost his passport, money etc in Nigeria and may require financial help, when he was very much in India and had not lost anything.
Is this a simple financial fraud? or will it be used for obtaining a duplicate passport by the fraudster?. If so, imagine the dire consequences this "Identity Theft" may land the scientist if the "Pseudo Person" ends up committing crimes and terrorist activities. One day the gentleman sitting comfortably in India may find his name in the Interpol search list as a dreaded terrorist. There doesn't seem to be an easy remedy for such risks except for being watchful.
Hope Ludhiana police will take necessary steps to relieve the scientist of this harassment.
PR Syndicate honours 'Cyber Law Guru of India', Na.Vijayashankar
PR Syndicate, (an organization of Corporate PR Professionals in Chennai,) celebrated its First Anniversary on 20th January 2007 at Russian Cultural Centre. On the occassion, "Award of Excellence in Public Life" was presented to 'Cyber Law Guru of India' Na.Vijayashankar...More
Naavi's latest book "Cyber Laws Demystified" was soft launched at the Nimhans Convention Center during the Indian Police Congress. The book is a comprehensive coverage on Cyber Laws both ITA-2000 as well as IPR and other issues.
Structured into 24 chapters it also covers the proposed amendments to ITA-2000 in detail as an appendix. A copy of the Information Technology Act 2000 is also appended to the book.
The book also has several individual chapters on the legal issues of Cyber Banking, Cyber Advertising, Cyber Taxation and Cyber Terrorism.
The book is priced at Rs 750/-.
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