Tag: cyber crimes against women

Gender and Internet: Cyber law magazine for women News Update for July 1-20, 2019

Concerns regarding privacy breach by Russian FaceAging App rises
https://www.forbes.com/sites/thomasbrewster/2019/07/17/faceapp-is-the-russian-face-aging-app-a-danger-to-your-privacy/#1f5fd4462755

Devastating impact of Revenge porn on victim women and girls acknowledged again
https://www.grimsbytelegraph.co.uk/news/grimsby-news/devastating-impact-revenge-porn-files-3073566

Photo mining of women leads to balckmailing and extortion of women. Suspects arrested in Pakistan
https://www.samaa.tv/news/2019/07/islamabad-blackmailers-admit-to-involvement-in-child-pornography-fia/

Jeddah Court awards three days jail sentence to Saudi Woman for sending insulting Whatsapp communication to ex-husband
https://stepfeed.com/saudi-woman-gets-three-days-in-jail-over-profane-texts-to-ex-husband-4850

Selling intimate images of own wife is considered violative of law. SriLankan swimming instructor arrested for allegedly cooercing his Filipina wife to perform sexual activities for uploading the images and then selling them for unethical gain.
https://www.pna.gov.ph/articles/1074960

Philipines introduces Safe Spaces Act or Republic Act No 11313 to penalise misogynistic slurs, sexual harassment in public places, workplaces and online spaces.
Minimum sentence is fine and 12 hours community services with Gender sensitivity seminar
https://www.rappler.com/nation/235481-new-law-punishes-wolf-whistling-catcalling-online-sexual-harassment

Court struggles to settle online harassment cases involving emogis
https://edition.cnn.com/2019/07/08/tech/emoji-law/index.html?fbclid=IwAR3KP3pDDfrSbcnRYEyNPnPZN8S9MJZ6CPLLxMbV1OvSoq6bBfo6hXnSu_E

Facebook defends and says does not operate website to have friends, infringe privacy
https://arstechnica.com/tech-policy/2019/07/facebook-denies-allegations-that-you-make-friends-on-facebook/?fbclid=IwAR2gBe-S5rP4prF57zODikgKshn5gbJbew7UnJDibLFP7oxiCx3BJ-_mJJU

Gender and Internet: Web magazine for cyber law for women News update for May 6- 12th, 2019

Singapur is bringing in new laws to address offences like Revenge porn
https://www.devdiscourse.com/article/international/505777-singapores-new-law-to-curb-online-sexual-offences-like-revenge-porn

Women committing revenge porn targeting women gets punishment
https://www.nbcmiami.com/investigations/Nonconsensual-Revenge-Porn-Florida-Cyber-Civil-Rights-509726671.html

Online dating scam continues to rob women
https://m.timesofindia.com/home/sunday-times/cupid-or-conman-decoding-the-online-dating-scam/amp_articleshow/69180069.cms?fbclid=IwAR1FFJpUhJNnvxOXBUvrScs1dalXOpMoEV9EWLk80Wl8WWdzjDjP-JqSgEM

The great Facebook hack: Liability of Facebook as service provider

CYBER CRIME AGAINST WOMEN BY DEBARATI HALDER

Photo curtsy: Google

By the late evening of 28th September, 2018 almost all of Facebook users would have received messages in their electronic devices that their “session expired”. It indicated that the subscriber needs to log in again to continue the Facebook activities. Many of the users felt it was a hoax, many felt it was a hackers act and some could understand it was an alert alarm as they were always ‘online’ and never logged off even when their phones were ‘sleeping’ or switched off. By late night-early morning on 29th September, 2018 the Facebook subscribers got an official information from Facebook help center stating that the company had discovered that there was an attack on their system and the attackers had illegally accessed Facebook access tokens which would give way to access the subscribers’ data. On an emergency precautionary step, Facebook logged off all users so that they can log on again with a secured code provided by Facebook. It was confirmed that Facebook was trying to exercise due diligence to protect the data of the users and in the course of the same users were directed to log off.
Due diligence has been addressed by  S.512 © of the Digital Millennium Copyright Act, 1998 which indicates that the intermediary may be saved from third party liabilities (especially for copyright infringements) if  the intermediary practiced due diligence, i.e., it   did not have the requisite level of information about the said infringement, it must not have been financially benefited from such infringement, it must have taken expeditious measures to take down the content concerned or block the access to the material concerned upon receiving the information of the infringement. The same has also been addressed by S.79 (3) of the Information Technology Act, 2000 (amended in 2008) and has been further explained in Information Technology intermediary guidelines Rules, 2011 whereby the term cyber security incident has been defined as follows:
Rule .2(d) “Cyber security incident” means any real or suspected adverse
event in relation to cyber security that violates an explicit or implicity
applicable security policy resulting in unauthorised access, denial of
service or disruption, unauthorised use of a computer resource for
processing or storage of information or changes to data, information
without authorisation;
The rules further goes on to explain what are the due diligence practices that should be adopted by the intermediary under Rule.3(3), which states that  The intermediary shall not knowingly host or publish any information or shall not initiate the transmission, select the receiver of transmission, and select or modify the information contained in the transmission as specified in sub-rule (2):
Interestingly Rule. 4 of the Intermediary Guidelines Rule further provides a clear direction to the intermediaries as what is to be done and within how much time when the intermediary has come to know about any information which harms the interest of users or threatens the security of the nation etc (which are mentioned in rule 3), by stating that The intermediary, on whose computer system the information is stored or hosted or published, upon obtaining knowledge by itself or been brought to actual knowledge by an affected person in writing or through email signed with electronic signature about any such information as mentioned in sub-rule (2) above, shall act within thirty six hours and where applicable, work with user or owner of such information to disable such information that is in contravention of sub-rule (2). Further the intermediary shall preserve such information and associated records for at least ninety days for investigation purposes.
This Rule 4 (read with Rule 3) mentions that the intermediary should either remove the offensive content or block the access to the content. Facebook in its action in practicing due diligence and exercising reasonable security practices (in India, the guiding principle in this regard is mentioned in the Information Technology (Reasonable security practices and procedures and sensitive personal data or information) Rules, 2011), had alerted the users, logged them off and logged them in with fresh code and also expressed that they are not aware whether any individual has been affected by such unauthorised access to the Facebook system as a whole.
By doing this Facebook actually tried to escape its liability as a ‘negligent body corporate’ or a company which may be brought to the courts under S.43A of the Information Technology Act, 2000(amended in 2008). Compare the incident of Facebook- Cambridge analytica data breach and how the EU parliament addressed the issue by accusing Facebook for having extremely poor cyber security measures compared to Europe. Facebook users were also advised by an Illinois court to go for a class suit against the company (Facebook) for unethically scanning and storing personal photos and information of the users.[1]The recent news also suggests that in the US Facebook users have started going for class actions against Facebook for data breach which occurred apparently because of  the company’s negligence in securing the data.[2]Under the Indian information technology Act, 2000(amended in 2008), S.43A empowers the victims of privacy (including data ) breach to claim compensation from the faulting body corporate to a maximum limit of Rs. 5 Crores, which however is subject to modification depending upon the damage suffered by the victims, reputation harm etc and the discretion of the adjudicator. Not many users have applied this law for bringing big companies under the Indian scanners. There are however some cases of bank’s liability or hospital managements liability which are now coming up because of the awareness among the users/data owners and their lawyers.
However, web companies like Google, Facebook etc may have another option to shred the liability: they may always shift the major burden to the data owners or data managers, i.e. the private individuals who upload data almost every minute in average to expose their private information.[3]It is for this that we need to be vigilant on our own practices of data sharing.
Stay safe, play safe.
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. (2018), “ The great Facebook hack : Liability of Facebook as service provider”  30thSeptember, 2019 , published in http://debaraticyberspace.blogspot.com


[1]See Halder Debarati (2018), FB, Its content regulation policies & photo matching tech: boon or bane for Indian women from privacy law aspect. Published in LiveLaw on April, 20018 @https://www.livelaw.in/fb-its-content-regulation-policies-photo-matching-tech-boon-or-bane-for-indian-women-from-privacy-law-aspects/
[2]See for instance, see Knoop Joseph (2018), Facebook sued over data breach that involved 50 million accounts . available @ https://www.dailydot.com/layer8/facebook-breach-lawsuit/
[3] For better understanding about this see Halder & Jaishankar ((November 2016). Cyber Crime against Women in India. New Delhi: SAGE. ISBN: 978-93-859857-7-5.

Help young generation to understand their duties and rights on cyber space: Model Policy Guidelines for Directing Students for Positive Use of Internet Including Social Networking Sites and Whatsapp

CYBER CRIME AGAINST WOMEN BY DEBARATI HALDER

Better late than never! Let us start 2018 with a positive note: let us teach our younger tech savvy generation how to respect women, men and people from LGBTQ groups online.  I was invited by  UNICEF to represent them in the West Bengal State child protection committee meet on child rights and deliver lecture  on online exploitation of children on 21st November, 2017 . I  delivered lecture on “Children as consumers and contributors of offensive contents online and role of POCSO Act: a Therapeutic Jurisprudential approach.” 
We know children are smarter than us the older generation in cyber related issues. But at the same time, it is also our duty to guide children to be more responsible while on internet. I take pleasure in sharing this model policy guidelines which was prepared by me sometimes back. This model policy guidelines may be used by schools, colleges and other stake holders


Objectives & missions of the policy guidelines: To protect children from adversities of internet and educating them for a positive use of internet and social-networking sites.
Scope of the policy guidelines: It may be used to educate children from 1st Standard to plus 2. It may also be used to provide guidance for teachers and counsellors to help children for positive usage of internet and social networking sites.
The guidelines:
1.Every school must encourage children to participate in debates or discussions on internet rights, positive and negative effects of the same. This may be made as a part of the subject of computer science, or as a part of C.C.
2.Junior students (from the age group of 4-8) must be encouraged to take part in awareness building sessions. In such sessions, the students may be shown how to handle the devices properly and why not to switch on devices without parent’s supervision or permission. For this purpose the schools can consider making small skits with the help of older children and the teachers, or use movie clippings or other audio-visual learning materials.
3.Students from the age group of 8-13 must be encouraged to attend awareness sessions where they may be taught how to use the internet for positive gain. Given the fact that many study materials and books provide internet links or pages on specific subjects, the students may be encouraged to open such sites in the presence of the teachers. Parent-teacher-student sessions must be made to sensitise parents about the positive use of internet and digital communication technology. Students may be introduced to issues including grooming by paedophiles, values of good talk and bad talk in the internet etc. Students may be slowly introduced to social networking sites. It is not necessary to direct the students to open their accounts. But the students may be asked to take part in discussions on the policy guidelines or terms and conditions that are
offered by social networking sites, email service providers etc, and then create their own accounts in the social networking sites.
4.Students from the age group of 14-17 may be encouraged to open accounts in the social networking sites and add their parents and teachers in their friend circles. They may be encouraged to create their own safety rules and privacy rules and discuss about them with younger students in class debates or awareness sessions. Students may also be encouraged to access informative pages in the social networking sites for gaining more knowledge.
5.It is important to teach students about rational coping mechanisms if and when they accidentally fall victims of cyber crimes. They must be taught how to use the safety tools to protect themselves, when and how to contact the principals, teachers and parents.
6.Schools must arrange for workshops on guiding students for positive usage of internet, which may include sessions on copyright violations as well. In such workshops, students may be encouraged to express their thoughts. Such workshops may be conducted with the police personnel, cyber crime experts, and NGOs as resource persons.
7.Senior students (from the age group of 16-18) may be encouraged to create their own blogs or vlogging sites either on their own or as group effort to show case positive usage of internet.
8.However, it must be noted that this policy guideline should not be used if the schools wish to use it as the sole guideline for separate types of offences. The author offers to cooperate with the schools to build up unique policy guidelines on the basis of this model policy guideline depending upon the need of every organisation. It is hoped that if the above guidelines are adopted, crimes targeting children by children and adults may be curbed.

* This model policy guideline was first published in http://www.cybervictims.org/moderlpgccvc.pdf by Dr. Debarati Halder. 

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. (2018), “Help young generation to understand their duties and rights on cyber space: Model Policy Guidelines for Directing Students for Positive Use of Internet Including Social Networking Sites and Whatsapp, published in http://debaraticyberspace.blogspot.com on 28-01-2018

Virtual friendship: what’s the reality in it for women

CYBER CRIME AGAINST WOMEN BY DEBARATI HALDER

6th August, 2017 my WhatsApp, Facebook, Twitter and Instagram accounts were flooded with Happy friendship images. I was not well aware about friendship day as I was for Raksha Bandhan because back in our school days, we loved to wait for  “Rakhi” which used to come in different shapes made of colourful  sponge  topped with tiny little shining stars. Irrespective of gender, we used to tie Rakhi on each other’s hands and gift our own crafts (the “home made Rakhi”) to our elders, teachers and our best-friends. In my family, this was an occasion to pamper our grandfather with our own Rakhi who was generous enough to give us the sisters a treat in a nearby Chinese restaurant for “rakhi”. My family was not alone in celebrating Rakhi in such a manner. There were many families irrespective of religion who would extend Rakhi greetings and children would come over to each other’s places to show their Rakhi that they got from their siblings, friends or even grandparents. That was our ‘friendship day’ too as we the Bengalis carefully nurtured the custom of strengthening social bond with tying of Rakhi to our friends irrespective of their religion, cast or place of birth, instilled by none other than Rabindra Nath Tagore. We never saw texts wishing of “rakhi” or “Freindship day”. The greetings cards made especially for this were special items in gift shops which some of us bought for presenting a ‘memorable gift’ to their acquaintances. That was some thing REAL in real world.
There were spats of incidences this Friendship day and Raksha Bandhan day which made me think where we are heading to:
People wish happy friendship day to strangers whom they have never met or heard their voices in their lives. Women especially are flooded with such messages accompanied with images from ‘friends’ all over the world. An expert researcher may definitely find a nexus between sending friendship messages and subsequent online harassment to these ‘friends’. Such messages actually initiate a strange relationship and may even make women recipients believe that the senders have genuine interest in extending friendship. This internet culture is especially noticeable in young women and also first time users of social media including messaging apps in the smart phones. The virtual friendship or even any relationship can be so addictive that individuals may even forget their real life family or friends with whom one has actually grown up. Unfortunately there is no law for internet-deaddiction or rather virtual relationship deaddiction. Laws are made to control crime or prevent escalation of crimes. But consider when individuals forget their liabilities and duties to their real life family members or friends for their virtual relationships: a unique condition may arise in such cases where the neglected member may have to plead to the courts for directing the concerned person to ‘pay attention’ failing which, he/she may have to ‘pay’ for his/her irresponsible nature. Such unique conditions may include not only negligence of his /her moral responsibilities towards own families including caring for older or younger generations or dependants, but also may include exposing own family members or real life friends to extreme danger including various types online offences whereby the latter’s privacy may be infringed due to callousness of the earlier.
August is the beginning of  festive season in India, followed by major festive months including September and October. Let us share the happiness and positiveness among our family and friends first and then to our virtual friends some of whom may not even be “real”. We need to understand that once the family unit provides a strong mental support to any individual including children, no negative force may destroy the inner peace and yes, the reputation of the said person. Sharing happiness and sorrows alike may also make it easier for any one especially women and girls  to combat online harassment especially those kinds which directly affects our reputation.
Let us be independent from fear of virtual reputation damage which may be caused due to unknown virtual friends.
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. (2017), “ Virtual friendship: what’s the reality in it for women”10th August, 2017, published in http://debaraticyberspace.blogspot.com

how safe women are in the cyber space?

The IT act 2000 doesnot mention any thing about the safety of the women in the net. As such it does not speak about the typical cyber crimes that can be commiteed against women. well, analysing chapterXI of the IT Act , it could be seen crime against women in the net can be of morte than one type , namely email harassment, cyber stalking, cyber stalking, cyber sex, cyber defamation and so on.
but unfortunately women are defence less in the cyberspace.