Cybercrimes and the Indian Legal System



The 1940s- The first digital computer was created or invented in 1943. At that time, executing cyberattacks was full of ‘twists’. Also, computer accessibility was limited to very few people who were not very well-connected to each other. Naturally, cyberattacks were non –existent during ‘40s.

The theory of computer viruses popped up when pioneer John Von Neumann came across the reproduction ability of the device- COMPUTER.

The 1960s–  The 1960s made accessibility to computers a bit more open and on a broader scale. High school students were given chance by IBM to experiment their new computer. When this happened, the students got interested in the new technology and then they started experimenting or playing about the system details, new ways to develop the system from which many defensive measures came up to protect the system. It was the rise of CYBERSECURITY, the era of mid 1960s.

The 1980s– The year 1987 was the birth year of Cybersecurity. Though there was conflict of ideas as to who brought in the first antivirus, whether it was Andreas Luning and Kai Figge or Three Czechoslovakians or John MCAfee was a big question.

This year saw the worldfamous CASCADE  virus which was an encrypted virus infecting the.COM files and which acted as an external force to IBM’S antivirus product development.

The 1990s- The year 1996 brought in many new viruses which used techniques like – ‘polymorphism’,’ stealth capability’ even ‘macro viruses’ came up which made it harder for the old antiviruses to detect them and stay updated be in pace with the evolving viruses.

The 2000s- In the year 2001, there was no need to go afar, trouble was in home itself. The infected websites laid trap for the common internet users and opening those websites led the spread of certain malwares. Worms spread via common messages or sms by Internet Chat Relay(ICR).

The 2010s- As time passed by, both the cybercriminals and the detectors went on advance stages with their methods.

The criminals used methods like- social engineering, multi-vector attacks to hack various gigantic systems of reputed organizations and the organizations in turn took the help of – firewalls, Multi- factor authentication(MFA), Sandboxing or Back up Mirroring.[1]




Surface web is the web that we are using in our daily lives. We use several websites labeled as .com, .org etc along with domain names. Now, we use accessible Google Chrome browser to access our Internet tasks. There is TOR browser with all total a different setup in the deeper net or Dark web or Deep web.

Criminals sitting there do hide their identities and operate anonymously. They create a link between the client and the website and create fake links clicking which track the user’s IP address and bank details or other fraud results. These links generally come disguised as actual links but on clicking them anybody can fall into Identity Theft trap. These criminals basically uses someone else’s IP address and they create havoc in that person’s name.[2]


“Whoever, fraudulently or dishonestly make use of the electronic signature, password or any other unique identification feature of any other person, shall be punished with imprisonment of either description for a term which may extend to three years and shall also be liable to fine which may extend to rupees one lakh.”- Section 66C.[3]

“Whoever, by means of any communication device or computer resource cheats by personation, shall be punished with imprisonment of either description for a term which may extend to three years and shall also be liable to fine which may extend to one lakh rupees.”- Section 66D.[4]



We trade regularly in offline markets using fiat currency or debit or credit card or netbanking or paytm, UPI. In the similar manner, there is a parallel world in dark web where online monetary transactions go on via cryptocurrencies. Bitcoin is the most popular among all the cryptocurrencies and it is accepted in all the websites of dark web in the Silk Road Saga. Although identity can be hidden using bitcoin, there are enough security problems as it uses a public ledger which stores transaction history and links to the individual wallet addresses of the users making them easier to identify. It makes the Federal Bureau of Investigation (FDI) easier to detect such criminals. The founder of Silk Road associated with $1 billion Bitcoin transaction- Ross Ulbricht though was arrested in 2015, but such illicit websites knew no bounds and is still continuing with cryptocurrency transfer. [5]


In the early 2010s, there appeared something gruesome and very devilish known as RED ROOMS in the history of dark web. Red rooms are rooms where there is a person being tortured live by another person- the torturer under the red light so is the name red rooms. They are tortured to the extent of being killed on viewers’ request watching torture sessions and they also offer values in cryptocurrencies on the tortured person.

The famous case of Daisy’s Destruction was carried where a man named Peter Scully was arrested by FBI for sexually abusing children and torturing them eventually causing multiple crimes. Inspite of this horrific crime, many a people doubt the existence of red rooms just because everyone cannot trace them in Internet using Google or Bing. Tor or I2P browsers are required for attending red room shows.  [6]


Under Tort law, a new form of unlawful activity was determined that is violation of privacy of an individual which is supposed to remain his personal space is being hampered. Presently, this right to privacy has attained Constitutional status and attracts both issues from civil and criminal law. In Cyber world, basically there is no privacy at all the content and search histories etc are being stored somewhere or the other in the system of networks. According to Art.21, right to privacy is a right to personal liberty and right to life. Thus, here enters Information Technology Act,2000 along with its several provisions to uphold the Right to Privacy and our Indian Constitution. [7]


Mariana Web is the darkest, deepest, last ever possible layer of Internet where all sorts of dreadful illegal activities take place. The most vital part being that here all sorts of secrets about agencies and Government are found.

There’s a myth that Mariana Web which itself is doubtful whether it exists or not, is an AI bot itself which keeps an eye on all activities going on and can sense changes taking place. Humankind’s deepest and darkest secrets which are not found in general Surface Web can be found on Mariana Web. Intelligence agencies’ archived databases can be found here. It’s said that the location of ATLANTIS is also given here. A puzzle – Cicada 3301 that was designed to find out the highly intelligent people with solution can be found here.

Unlike the Deep web, which uses TOR browser for its operation, Mariana Web require special conditions for its operation. Polymeric Falcighol Derivation algorithm needs to be calculated. Also, quantum computers with special condition of high vaccum pressure 10 billion times lower than earth’s atmosphere is required to access the Mariana’s Web.

This being the reason why only Government agencies own such quantum computers and only a few selected Government officials can access the Mariana’s Web.[8]


  1. The IT Act,2000 may cause a problem of jurisdiction.
  2. Electronic transaction is based on domain names whereas the following act does not at all include domain names, rights and liabilities associated with its owners.
  3. The Act does not provide for copyright and patent issues which are highly recommended in case of computer networks and programs.
  4. As technology is improving , progressing, developing, so ought the Technology Law. But, this is not the case. The Act does not cover the evolving cybercrimes like- chat room abuse, theft of internet hours or cyber stalking and fraud.
  5. The Act does not regulate privacy or content regulation which is required for vulnerable Internet poses.
  6.  The Act has got implementation issues full- fledgedly with regulations.


It has laid down certain provisions-

  1. The term digital signature has been replaced with electronic signature to act more technology – neutral.
  2. The term Communication – device has been well defined that transmits video contents or texts or images over the web.
  3. The term cyber-café has been defined as a place where Internet accessibility is available and people visiting there can access it with a fee.
  4. Newer sections have been added to data protection, safety and privacy. [9]


  1. Easy Access System – The hackers search for an easy way to breach with their complex technologies. Most of the systems is devoid of any kind of cybersecurity. As a result of which the hackers qualify the biometric test and pass through the firewall of the respective system. They analyze the retina images, voice recognition etc and breaches the private content in an unauthorized way.
  2. Storing Data in a small space – All the necessary data stored in the same place paves way for cyber attacks . The attackers punch this weak point and gets an easy access to all the data. Therefore, it is advised to segregate the data in different places so that they become ‘not so easily accessible’.
  3. Complex coding- An operating system is made up of several complex codings. The codes do have some loopholes and it is amidst these loopholes somewhere the cyber security attacks take place by the attackers of the cyber world by disrupting the functional operation of a system and injecting malicious software into the otherwise healthy and virus-free system.
  4. Negligience– It is about our negligience that such grave attacks happen in the system. Attackers enter through the gaps we did not notice or ignored.
  5. Loss of evidence– The first cyberattack in a system destroys its evidence of the attack which makes it difficult for cybercrime detection. It also makes the system vulnerable to future cyber attacks. [10]


Computer Emergency Response Team (CERT-IN) has been created by the Indian Government along with the ITA to boost up cybersecurity skills , work with other individuals to make cybersecurity a global and an important issue as it sounds.

We can also talk about the Digital India Programme , that has come up with the motto of making India Tech-Savvy, secured in the cyberspace also raising awareness amongst public about cybersecurity,

The Central Monitoring System(CMS) is also such an initiative by the Government of India.

In the case of Justice K. S. Puttaswamy (Retd.) and Anr. v. Union of India and Ors. [(2017) 10 SCC 1], the Constitution of India declared Art.21 the fundamental right to life also as the Right to privacy thus recognizing it as a fundamental right also the right to data protection and informational privacy.[11]


In conclusion, it may be said that, cybersecurity is a complicated subject which contains collaborative study of various disciplines- computer science and information technology, law, economics, psychology, international relations, political science, organizational behavior, sociology, decision sciences and engineering.

The two central ideas being- Cybersecurity cannot be solved for once and all. Again, the problems are limited in scope and duration, thus the solutions of this interdisciplinary subject lies in the heart of non- technical as much as technical nature.[12]

[1] Katie Chadd, “The history of Cybercrime and Cybersecurity,1940-2020”, Cybercrime Magazine.

[2] Dario Adriano Bermudez Villalva, Jeremiah Onaolapo, “Under and over the surface: a comparison of the use of leaked account credentials in the Dark and Surface Web”, Crime Science, 17(2018).

[3] Information Technology  Act,2000, Section 66C.

[4] Information Technology Act,2000, Section 66D.

[5] Andrey Sergeenkov, “How are the Silk Road, the Dark Web and Bitcoin Connected?” Alexandria, Crypto Basics (2022).

[6] Akansha Deshmukh, “ Dark web ‘Red Rooms’ remain an urban legend despite the existence of ‘Daisy’s’ Destruction”, TOI , March 4, 2023,9:58pm IST.

[7] Jagruti Dekavadiya,” Cyber Crimes and Cyber Law; The Indian perspective”,

[8] Sagar Rajbhandari, “What is Mariana’s Web?How to access it?”, Gadnwid, Sunday, May 7,2023.

[9] Aishwarya Sandeep, “Pros and Cons of the Information Technology Act,2000”,

[10] UNext editorial team, “Major causes of cybercrimes you must be aware of”, UNext, 28 September,2022.


 [12] NBK223216, “At the Nexus of Cybersecurity and Public Policy: Some Basic Concepts and Issues”, National Library of Medicine, National Academies Press(US); 2014, Jun 16.

Author: Sulagna Ghosh

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