CYBER CRIME AGAINST WOMEN
Often I am asked why plight of adult women in the internet bothers me more than children. It is disheartening to note that adult women often suffer more than children do and few understand the problems. There are many vicious windows which portray women in nasty styles .Earlier when I was researching on these sites, especially on adult entertainment sites, I noted that these sites present apparently “very legal” pictures; for instance, the viewer needs to certify that he/she is not a minor, the sites display that models have acted with their free will and none are minors even though some may look like minors. But what whirled around in my head was……… are these models playing really as per their free wills? Well, in certain circumstances I doubt and I have every reason to doubt. As a cyber crime researcher and counselor, I get to see many cases where releasing either original or morphed intimate pictures, videos etc, showcasing women especially, has become a fashion for showing revenge taking power for many broken hearts. Couple of months back, I wrote a blog on ‘forced pornography’. Well, in this blog I wish to discuss about some ‘real breach of trusts’ through adult entertainment sites, ‘storage websites’ with capacity of store huge MBs of files , peer to peer networking etc. Often men and women enter into ‘forbidden experiments’ either coerced by emotional needs or just for experimenting. In such intimate moments either both of them consent or one is forced to consent by the other partner for emotional needs. What the female partner do not consent for, is clicking her in this ‘too much private’ situation. These people are mostly not married couple but may be committed or may not be. Well, this had never remained new phenomena, but what emerged as a new fashion is to take undue advantage of this situation in the very cyber way. Often these pictures or videos are offered to many unwanted sites which are possibly the best revenge for breaking hearts one can think of. A year back I came across an article which pointed out how possibly internet helps to carry on trafficking of women for sex industries. Perhaps this is one of easiest ways to traffic women virtually. Now, where does the breach of trust or abuse of intimate moments arise here?
Internet has become a way of life for us. Internet provides every single information we need. Practically after the internet revolution many people forgot the ways to real life libraries, smell of old and new books and even the patience to read the good old books. Well , well…….definitely I belong to one of those who now rarely visit libraries. People of my sort love to stay in the internet as long as it is possible and no wonder, several men and also women love to get sexual pleasure from such adult entertainment sites. Imagine the plight of those innocent women who would have popped up in these sites without their knowledge and even consent. How much humiliation these women may go through when some inquisitive, caring friend or relative makes an international call/long distance call /lands up at the door step suddenly to let such victims know what has happened…!
Do our Indian laws say some thing? Well, off course yes. The Indian Penal Code, the century old caretaker of Indian victims’ rights may be mentioned as foremost. Section 509 strictly prohibits harming the modesty of women with a penal punishment which may run to one year imprisonment or fine or both. The mischief was given a more strict approach through Indecent representation of women (prohibition) Act 1986, which through section 3 and 4 aims to prohibit indecent representation of women; this Act writes a stronger note when such women victims are depicted in that particular indecent fashion without their consent and knowledge. Quite in the same line, Indian information Technology Act (Amended) 2008 also prohibits intrusion into the privacy of women ( and also men) in the cyber way through section 66E which prohibits voyeurism and prescribes punishment for three years and also a huge monetary fine; the Act further prohibits publishing obscene materials under section 67 and materials containing sexually explicit materials under section 67A . Note that the later section prescribes a noncognizant, non bailable imprisonment for a term of maximum 7 years.
Readers, don’t be surprised to note that even though these ‘seems to be strong laws’ operate in our country, innocent women are still being exhibited in these adult entertainment sites. Humiliation piles up, victimization leaves a deep trauma and those behind these nasty activities feel this is the magic of cyber space. People don’t forget, one moment’s mistake can land you in legal trouble for ever……………no matter whether it is cyber space or real space, law will never forgive such mischief mongers.
Please Note: Do not violate copyright of this blog. If you would like to use informations provided in this blog for your own assignment/writeup/project/blog/article, please cite it as “Halder D. (2010), “Abuse of intimate moments in the cyber ways”, June 2010, published in http://debaraticyberspace.blogspot.com”