India wants globally acceptable cyber laws

New Delhi seeks regulation not limited to boundaries

India has called for a globally acceptable legal regime to maintain openness, security and international trust in the Internet as representatives of governments, civil society, academia and the private sector assembled at Sao Paulo in Brazil to discuss future of cyber-governance.

India also argued for evolution of “new cyber-jurisprudence” to deal with cybercrimes without being limited by political boundaries.


“The structures that manage and regulate the core Internet resources need to be internationalised, and made representative and democratic,” said Vinay Kwatra, India’s representative to Global Multi-stakeholder Meeting on the Future of Internet Governance, or NETMundial, making a statement on behalf of the country’s government in the conclave. New Delhi stated that governance of the Internet should also be sensitive to cultures and national interests of all nations.

The mechanism for Internet governance should be transparent and should address all related issues. The Internet must be owned by the global community for mutual benefit and be rendered impervious to possible manipulation or misuse by any particular stakeholder, whether State or non-State, it argued.

The “NETMundial” assumes special significance as this is the first international conference on Internet governance after the US last month announced it would give up its supervision of the Internet Corporation for Assigned Names and Numbers (ICANN).

American intention

The US Commerce Department’s National Telecommunications and Information Administration (NTIA) announced on March 14 its intent to transition key Internet domain-name functions to the global multi-stakeholder community.

The NTIA asked the ICANN to convene global stakeholders to develop a proposal to transition the current role played by NTIA in the coordination of the Internet’s Domain Name System (DNS).

The US move was apparently intended to defuse tension in its ties with several countries, including Brazil and India, over revelations by whistle-blower Edward Snowden that its National Security Agency’s surveillance programme targeted foreign governments and leaders, including Brazilian President Dilma Rousseff, apart from having real-time access to content on servers of Internet companies.

The revelations exposed US technology and telecom companies to enhanced scrutiny in other countries.

“Given that the core infrastructure of the Internet is not protected by any international legal regime, it is important to shape a globally acceptable legal regime to maintain openness, security and international trust in the Internet,” said Kwatra.

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