Cybercrime And Modern World Governments Are Under the Threat of Its Use in The Defense Systems of All Nations

Published On: 18th March, 2024

Authored By: Shri Ganarchit. B
ICFAI Hyderabad

INTRODUCTION:  

In recent times we have been facing the problem of cybercrimes due to the IT revolution, the Usage of online-based applications, and the complete digitalization of the world which led to concern about cyber attacks or cybercrimes that come under offenses which is punishable under criminal procedure or CrPC. It raised concern in modern society because too many fraudsters and hacking organizations all over the world are trying to extract information, and transactions through the usage of the Deep web, Surface web, and Dark web where the data gathered is stored and sold to various other parties who improperly misuse the data and posing a risk to the entire nation and its entire citizens which also violates the Article 21 – Right to privacy which comes under fundamental rights of an individual but the leakage in such information, sensitive content limited to few organizations are been hacked and manipulation of original content or data which leads to many problems in the modern world and also the privacy is violated the IT Rules are imposed by the government to tackle such problems in the usage of cyber has a means of illegal purposes restrictions are imposed on such activities by the government to overcome such cases of cybercrimes.                                                              On, March 19, 2002, in London, England A person named Gary McKinnon a hacker hacked the systems of the Pentagon in the USA, and NASA to find the suppressed information and the coverup done by the US government on the UFOs and aliens visited all over the world were its clearly stated that defense systems can be accessed for the sake of suppressed information from eyes of public or secrecy maintained by the government without any prior knowledge of the existence of such entities or ETs by the process of hacking for the benefit of people to know something hidden thus the concept of hacking is having its own merits as well as demerits in this scenario it’s a merit  but in case of misuse of such hacking lead to cybercrimes and many cyber threats in security and in terms of defense perspective whereas the IT rules regulate restrictions as follows:-                                                            

IT Rules 2023:

The new regulations enable a government “fact check unit” to spot misleading material about any central government-related matter. The fact-checking unit has the authority to review and direct online intermediaries to filter comments, news articles, and viewpoints regarding public servants and ministries. These regulations also permit file-hosting businesses, ISPs, and online social media platforms to restrict content.                                       

Constitutionality of the IT Rules, 2023:

In accordance with Section 79 of the Information Technology Act of 2000, the IT Rules, 2023 were developed. The Shreya Singhal ruling of the Supreme Court states that intermediaries are only able to take action if they are informed about illegal conduct by the relevant authorities or if they have actual knowledge from a court order.
(The IT Rules, 2023 do not define “fake or false or misleading” information; instead, they go beyond the set limitations.)
The regulations’ ambiguity gives the government unconstitutional authority to censor.     

IT Rules 2023 Impact on Freedom of Expression:

The definition of “fake or false or misleading” material, as well as the requirements and appeals procedures for the “fact check unit,” are not specified in the IT Rules, 2023. The Union government gains arbitrary and discretionary power when a “fact check unit” is not protected. The IT Rules, 2023 offer no protections against the kind of incompetence that has been leveled against the Press Information Bureau’s current unit, which has been criticized for lacking competence. The Indian Newspaper Society, Digipub, and the Editors Guild have all expressed disapproval of the proposed revisions. It is concerning that there was no substantial consultation prior to the announcement of the IT Rules, 2023.

The government’s history of amending the IT Rules every year to extend its powers has been met with opposition.

The IT Rules, 2023 grant the central government’s “fact check unit” Orwellian censorship powers. The regulations’ ambiguity and lack of protections give the government unconstitutional authority to censor.
Concerns have been raised about the impact on the right to free speech, and the government’s practice of extending its authority by modifying the IT Rules annually has encountered resistance.
It is imperative to guarantee that the IT Rules, 2023 do not serve as a tool for suppressing dissent or violating fundamental rights.

Puttaswamy Case

 Case Summary – Justice K. S. Puttaswamy (Retd.) V Union of India:-

The 1948 Universal Declaration of Human Rights explicitly states in Article 12 that “No one shall be subjected to arbitrary interference with his privacy, family, home or correspondence, nor attacks upon his honor and reputation.” The right to privacy is widely regarded as one of the fundamental human rights. Everyone is entitled to the protection of the law from these kinds of intrusions or assaults.

The majority of Western countries possess a strong legal framework concerning privacy, and India has long recognized the need for something similar. The Supreme Court had already made strong observations on the matter in various judgments which include:

M.P. Sharma v Satish Chandra

Maneka Gandhi v Union of India

Kharak Singh v the State of UP, and

Peoples Union for Civil Liberties v Union of India.

  • The introduction of Aadhar Cards raised awareness of people’s right to privacy once more. In a writ case, retired Justice Puttaswamy contested Aadhar’s legitimacy before the Supreme Court. The petitioner contended that about all the previous apex court judgments, the Right to Privacy is a fundamental right and the Aadhar procedure violated this right.

Issues before the Court

  • The issue before the Court was whether the Right to Privacy was a fundamental right despite it not being expressly provided for by the Constitution.
  • The question that also arose was that since the Court had stopped short of declaring the right to privacy an absolute fundamental right in some of the above-mentioned judgments, the petitioner wanted the Court to clarify whether the view expressed in these previous judgments was the correct constitutional position.                                                            Privacy has been defined by the US judiciary as the right to be let alone. This concept is now being deemed by experts as insufficient in a large interconnected world.
    • The Supreme Court of India opined (in Ram Jethmalani vs Union of India case.) that “it is important that human beings should be allowed domains of freedom that are free of public scrutiny unless they act unlawfully.”
    • Privacy ensures that freedom of speech and expression survives. This is due to the fact that once we are monitored, we will begin to self-censor out of concern for government retaliation.
    • Democratic ideals of Pluralism and diversity start in the mind. These principles can only be appreciated and reveled in by an unbridled mind that is fearless.
    • Recently the use of private data for election campaigning brought out the controversy regarding large-scale storage of public data.
    • Facebook, Equifax, etc were also under fire for violating user privacy and using unethical means to track users’ lifestyles and movements.
    • Repressive regimes like Saudi Arabia and China also extensively use data mining technology to monitor and surveil citizens. They restrict free expression and quell opposition by using coercive measures.
  • India also had plans to initiate a mass surveillance program but had to put it on hold after receiving widespread criticism.           
  • What are the Concerns regarding Privacy in India?
    • Having no privacy is like having a perpetual warrant in your name. You will never be able to enjoy your fundamental rights to freedom and liberty if you feel like you are constantly being watched.
  • Unregulated access to data can lead to the suppression of dissent and censorship. Journalists, Human Rights Activists, etc. can be put under an invisible prison of surveillance.
  • People who are leading a lifestyle that is deemed taboo by a certain section of society might be vilified or targeted. For example homosexuals.
  • Surveillance by Police also causes a concentration of power and puts civil liberties at serious risk.
  • Law enforcement officials across the world are also accused of unauthorized data collection, data mining to predict travel plans, etc. to put citizen’s reputations at risk.
  • Personal information, such as travel and purchase history, financial information, and so forth, is used to build detailed web profiles. These profiles are occasionally used to disseminate well-crafted false information. As a result, fake news now has more power in the nation.
  • GDPR (General Data Protection Regulation)rules framed by the European Union (EU) have become a model for the world when it comes to privacy. The right to be forgotten is also in effect in the EU.

SC in previous judgments has also asserted the need for a right to reputation. For reputations to be protected, privacy must be prioritized, and society must be developed enough to comprehend this.                                                      

SUMMING UP THE FACTS OF CYBERCRIME:                .

Gary McKinnon’s hack on US military computers: In 2001-2002, Gary McKinnon, a British hacker, hacked into 97 computers, 16 of which belonged to NASA and 81 to other parts of the US Department of Defense 3.

  • Top 10 Cyber-Attacks of 2023: Infosecurity Magazine has listed the top 10 cyber-attacks of 2023 based on the scale of the incident and its longer-term implications 2.
  • Significant Cyber Incidents: The Center for Strategic and International Studies (CSIS) maintains a timeline of significant cyber incidents since 2006. The chronology encompasses cyberattacks against governmental organizations, defense, and advanced technology firms, or financial crimes resulting in damages in excess of a million dollars 4.
  • It is important to note that cyber attacks are a serious threat to national security and can have far-reaching consequences. Governments and organizations must take proactive measures to protect their systems and data from such attacks.        
  • The NSO Group creates state-of-the-art technologies to assist law enforcement in identifying and deterring criminal activity and terrorism.
  • Our products assist authorized government intelligence and law enforcement organizations in legally tackling the most perilous issues facing the modern world. The technology of NSO has aided search and rescue teams, stopped criminal activity, prevented terrorism, and located missing people.

USE CASES

To combat crime and terrorism, only government intelligence and law enforcement organizations employ NSO products.

  • Our products have been successfully used to:
  • Prevent terrorism, including gun violence, car bombs, and suicide bombers at transportation hubs, public parks, markets, concert venues, sports arenas, and other public areas.
  • Break up pedophilia, sex- and drug-trafficking rings, and money-laundering operations.
  • Find and rescue kidnapped children.
  • Assist emergency search and rescue (SAR) teams in locating survivors trapped under collapsed buildings in the wake of natural disasters or construction failures. 

According to the NSO Groups, The Transparency and Responsibility Report:                                                               They even claim that it was used improperly by someone to attack, and what u read is incorrect about Pegasus which u heard in the news it meant to tackle many problems and protect the interests of citizens,  The Pegasus was not meant to violate any rights of citizens but also to safeguard there interests         the governments use to tackle:-             

Understanding Pegasus

  • Pegasus is not a mass surveillance tool. It is utilized with a certain, specified phone.
  • numbers of suspected terrorists and criminals, one at a time. In many ways, Pegasus is similar to a traditional wiretap.
    • Pegasus is not operated by NSO Group. It is licensed to legitimate, vetted intelligence
    • and law enforcement agencies of sovereign states for the prevention and investigation of
    • terrorism and other serious crimes in accordance with applicable laws and regulations.
    • Pegasus cannot take control of a device, manipulate existing data, or implant new
    • It is technologically impossible. Pegasus to add, alter, delete, or
    • Carry out any further tasks or alter data on specific mobile devices.
    • beyond viewing and/or extracting certain data.
  • Pegasus does not penetrate computer networks, desktop or laptop operating systems, or data networks. It can be installed only on smartphones and cannot be used to gather information more broadly.                

It is important to note that cyber attacks are a serious threat to national security and can have severe consequences. Governments and organizations must take proactive measures to prevent such attacks and ensure that their systems are secure.  

REFERENCES:-                                                                            https://www.infosecurity-magazine.com/news-features/top-cyber-attacks-2023/       

                                        https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/List_of_security_hacking_incidents 

https://www.crn.com.au/feature/the-five-biggest-hacks-of-all-time-402393/page3           

https://www.nsogroup.com/Newses/nso-groups-second-transparency-and-responsibility-report/         

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=x2A3LONAyEM                                                                                                                    

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