37 pc of cyber crime cases closed as police fail to trace culprits

37 pc of cyber crime cases closed as police fail to trace culprits

If you have been a victim of cyber crime and plan to approach the cyber crime police station here in the hope of justice, you may well be disappointed. 

For, after finding it difficult to trace the culprits, police have closed as many as 172 or 37.2 per cent of the 462 cases they booked ever since the cyber crime police station was set up in 2001. And on top of that, not a single person has been convicted of any cyber crime. 

The cyber crime police station at Carlton House — part of the Criminal Investigation Department (CID) — was said to be the first-of-its-kind facility in the country. Of the 462 cases registered in the last 12 years, police have filed ‘C’ reports in 172 cases (or closed them), saying they have not been able to trace the accused/suspects. 

Of the remaining lot, 65 cases are under investigation and trial is pending in 92. Twenty-one cases resulted in acquittal and three were settled in Lok Adalat. Police filed ‘B’ reports in 68 cases, saying they were false. The highest number of cases (293) registered at the police station pertain to phishing and hacking; 88 cases are related to sending of obscene e-mails.
 Senior police officers cite several reasons for the delay or failure in tracing the culprits and zero conviction. The DGP (CID and Economic Offences), Bipin Gopalakrishna, said that tracing the culprits and cracking the cyber crimes were difficult as the IP addresses for most of them would be rooted abroad. 

Another officer said that jurisdiction played a major role in cracking cyber crimes as it would not be limited to a particular area but would be spread across other nations. Besides, there are no treaties or pacts with other countries to investigate cyber crimes. While there were many people with the technical expertise to probe cyber crimes, more such hands and latest technology in the cyber crime police station were required, he added. 

But what explains ‘B’ reports in 68 cases? The officer said that many cases were filed due to “mistake of facts”. Some cases are lodged to blackmail the accused or defame them, out of vengeance. In a thorough investigation, the complaint is found to be fake. Most of the fake complaints are filed by software companies against their employees for different reasons, he added. 

The officer attributed zero conviction to “ignorance” about cyber law and forensics among lawyers as well as judges. In some cases, the complainants even compromised with the culprits, he said. 

Many a time, people with a vindictive bent of mind use technology to harass their victims. They send them threatening e-mails or pornographic material to create mental and psychological turmoil. People who hack websites usually do it for gain and most of the time it is to disrupt the working of a website which in turns creates trouble for working of the company concerned, he added. 

Senior lawyer Byatha Jagadeesha said: “Cyber crime law is a new subject. Those working in this field should be well-versed as it involves technical aspects. Sometimes, cases turn invalid and they should go through the previous judgments and find out what can be done to make the cases valid.” 

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