CYBERCRIME COMPLAINT PROCEDURE AND LEGAL PROVISIONS

Author: "SHINY G MAHIMA"

Cyber Crime: Complaint Procedure and Legal Provisions for Victim

What is Cyber Crime?

Cybercrime is also called computer crime or internet crime, the use of the computer as an instrument to further illegal ends such as committing frauds, trafficking in child pornography and intellectual property, stealing identities, or violating privacy.

Types of Cybercrime

Fraud: Altering, destroying, stealing, or suppressing any information in an unlawful way.
Hacking: Partial or complete access to important data, breaching Privacy.
Identity Theft: Stealing Personal data like Passwords, bank details, Cards details, etc.
Spamming: Hosting malware by generating fake links of websites
Phishing: Bulk sending of emails to seek personal financial information.
Social Engineering: Fake Phone calls, Chats, Messages by acting as a legitimate company to fetch personal data
Cyber Stalking: Following a person online anonymously or Online Harassment on virtual media.
Software Piracy: Illegal duplication of Original content of  any materials though internet sources  (Duplication of songs, books, movies, software, etc)\nChild Pornography: Uploading, downloading, viewing porn contents involving children.
Cyber Bullying: Cheating, Harassing, and exposing anyone’s personal information illegally.

How to File Complaint of Cybercrime?

According to the Information Technology Act (2000), Cybercrime has global jurisdiction, a victim can file a complaint to any cyber cell or the nearest police station. The victim should keep the below-mentioned points to file a complaint of Cybercrime.
To register a written complaint with the cybercrime cell. To file complaint one needs to provide Name, Contact details for mailing purpose. The complaint should be addressed to the head of the cybercrime cells of the city where the complaint is made.

The Cybercrime complaint should be made by legal counsel to help the victim for reporting at the police station along with some needed documents based on the nature of the crime.

If the City does not Cybercrime cell, the victim can file an FIR to the local Police station. If the complaint is not accepted at the local police station, the victim can approach the commissioner or judicial magistrate. 

Certain Cybercrime offences come under the Indian Penal Code. As per Sec. 154 of the CRPC Act. Every police officer is bound to file the complaint irrespective of the place.

Many Cybercrime offences are cognizable, wherein warrant is not required to arrest or investigate. 
Apart from the above mentioned points, Victim must report the fraud/abuse on corresponding virtual media platforms officially. Every Virtual media platform has a specific procedure to report abuse/ cheating.

Required Documents to Report Online Fraud

Bank Statement of the Last Six Months
Copy of SMS received related to the suspected transaction
Copy of Victim’s ID and Address Proof as per bank records Punishable Offences of Cybercrime under Indian Penal Code (IPC)

Sec. 292: Obscenity (offensiveness/rudeness/vulgarity/atrocity) 
Sec.294: Obscene acts and Songs
Sec. 420: Fake Websites and Cyber Frauds
Sec.463: Email Spoofing (Deceiving Mails)
Sec. 464: Making False Documents\nSec. 468: Forgery for purpose of Cheating
Sec. 469: Forgery for purpose of Harming Reputation
Sec. 499: Sending defamatory Messages  \nSec. 500: Email Abuse
Sec. 506: Punishment for criminal intimidation 
Punishable Offences under IT Act (2000)
Sec. 66(a): Punishment for sending offensive messages
Sec 66 (c): Punishment for identity theft
Sec 66(d): Punishment for cheating online
Sec 66(e) : Punishment for Online Privacy violation
Sec 66 (f): Punishment for cyber terrorism
Sec. 67: Punishment for Publishing and transmitting offensive material
All crimes are punishable up to three years imprisonment as well as fine up to Rs. 1Lac.
Though enough legal provisions are available to deliver justice to the victim it’s always better to take some preventive approach like Don’t Download/access unauthenticated sources, Avoid using Public Wi-Fi for making financial transactions, Use the strong and unique password and keep updating it. Always approach a learned legal counsel/advocate immediately after becoming a victim of Cybercrime.

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