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Ministry of Women and Child Development take measures to reduce and deal with the cybercrimes against women in India

The Minister of Women and Child Development, Dr Virendra Kumar said that the Government of India, through Ministry, is working to improve and create more cybersecurity measures for women.

On 26 July, the Ministry released a statement that discussed the various precautions that are being taken to ensure women’s cybersecurity. In July 2014, after the Consultation on Cyber Crimes, the National Commission for Women submitted a report on the “Ways and Means to Safeguard Women from Cyber Crimes in India”. The report included recommendations to create more women-centric laws and to discourage hacking and other illegal cyber activities by setting in place stricter laws.

The report also suggested that dedicated helpline numbers be made functional to receive complaints. The Ministry should organise more awareness programmes in schools and universities to educate the youth about the consequences of misusing digital data and the existing and newly evolving types of cybercrimes that target women. Children must know the reasons behind the escalation in cybercrimes and the socio-legal ethics regarding photography in the public places (especially photography of women).

Apart from education, the report recommended developing more Cyber Cells for women, setting up more advanced cyber-forensic labs and providing better legal and technical training to law enforcement agencies.

The release claimed that the Information Technology Act, 2000 along with Indian Penal Code provides adequate legal measures to deal with the current cybercrimes in the country. The Information Technology Act, 2000 is an Act of the Indian Parliament that is the primary law regarding dealing with cybercrime and electronic commerce in the country. The policies provide punishment in the form of imprisonment ranging from two years to life imprisonment and a fine or penalty depending on the type of cybercrime.

According to the release, the Government has already taken a number of legal, technical and administrative measures to prevent cybercrimes; Cyber Police Stations and Cyber Crime Cells have been set up in every state in the country. The Ministry of Electronics & Information Technology (MeitY) has set up Cyber Forensics Training Labs in north-eastern states and in metropolitan cities such as Mumbai, Pune, Kolkata and Bangalore. These Labs train state police officials and judiciary in cybercrime detection and collection, preservation and seizing and analysing electronic evidence.

The Ministry of Home Affairs, the Ministry of Electronics and Information Technology and State Government are working together to digitise the security setup and to equip police personnel with the knowledge and skills to prevent and control cybercrime through various national and state police and judicial academies.

On 6 June 2016, the Ministry of Electronics & Information Technology issued an advisory on how matrimonial websites should function under the Information Technology Act, 2000. The Ministry outlined regulatory rules and directed the websites to adopt security measures to ensure that people using these websites are not deceived through fake profiles and that there is no misuse of the information provided on the sites.

The Government circulated Computer Security Policy and Guidelines to all the Ministries and Departments in the country on the steps to take to prevent, detect and mitigate cyber-attacks.

The Ministry of Home Affairs developed an online portal to facilitate the public's cybercrime complaints.

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