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Cyberlaw expert Pavan Duggal who is also Advocate, Supreme Court, says he has “seen a lot of progressive, proactive action by the government after 26/11”. He adds that the IT Act has given the “widest possible known legal definition”. It has made acts of cyber-terrorism punishable with life imprisonment and a fine (not specified). “Every computer system, network, resource and communication device is now covered by the Act. This will surely act as a deterrent to cyber-terrorism,” says Duggal.
“Internet Service Providers (ISPs) are now accountable for Wi-Fi connections along with the customers,” concurs Naresh Ajwani, Managing Director of S V Teletech and President of the Cyber Café Association of India (CCAOI). He adds that this is “the first and the right step”. With cybercafes also being made accountable, terrrorist emails, too, can be traced — the Headley incident being a case in point. While the FBI helped in identifying the voice over internet protocol (VoIP) gateway (which is not in India and hence makes tracking virtually impossible for the government), the local police traced the email to a computer in the Paharganj area with the help of cybercafe owners.
Duggal, however, highlights a few concern areas. “Not a single case of cyber-terrorism has been reported till date. There has, of course, been no conviction too. Cyber-terrorism can’t be fought by one single provision. We need secondary legislation too.”