Showing posts with label PERRY4LAW. Show all posts
Showing posts with label PERRY4LAW. Show all posts

Monday, April 23, 2012

Consolidated FDI Policy Of India 2012 By DIPP

It is very cumbersome and inconvenient to report all links to our previous posts on the topic consolidated FDI policy of India 2012 in every subsequent post. Therefore, Perry4Law and Perry4Law Techno Legal Base (PTLB) have decided to report the previous posts in this regard at this post.

This post would act as the base for all previous posts on this topic and we would keep on updating this post from time to time to make it updated, holistic and composite. We hope our readers would find this arrangement more useful and convenient.

Till now we have covered the following posts in this regard:







(7) Prohibited sectors under the consolidated FDI policy of India 2012,


(9) FDI in mining sector of India under consolidated FDI policy of India 2012,



(12) FDI in defence sector of India under consolidated FDI policy of India 2012


(14) FDI in print media sector of India under consolidated FDI policy of India 2012

(15) FDI in civil aviation sector of India under consolidated FDI policy Of India 2012

(16) FDI in courier services sector of India under consolidated FDI policy of India 2012






(23) FDI In Banking Sector Of India Under Consolidated FDI Policy Of India 2012




(27) FDI In Insurance Sector Of India Under Consolidated FDI Policy Of India 2012


Sunday, February 12, 2012

New GTLDs Applicants Must Ensure Due Diligence Before Applying

As the readers of the blog are aware Internet Corporation for Assigned Names and Numbers (ICANN) has already laid down stringent conditions for the acceptance of an application for registration of new GTLDs. The application amount for normal applicants has been quantified at US $ 1, 85,000. This would keep the non serious applicants out of the race to get a new GTLD.

However, merely giving this high fee would not guarantee that the applicant would get the applied new GTLD. If the applicant fails to make a good case for the grant of applied GTLD, this fee may be wasted. ICANN has clearly said that only “bonfide applicants” would be allotted the applied GTLD. The GTLD application would be minutely scrutinised before allowing the same.

Here lays the importance of a “GTLD due diligence service” that analysis the possibilities of allotment of the proposed GTLD. Perry4Law and Perry4Law Techno Legal Base (PTLB) strongly recommend a GTLD due diligence exercise before making an application to ICANN in this regard.

ICANN’s new generic top level domain names (new GTLDs) registration has begun. As on 12-02-2012, the applicants have 46 more days to apply for new GTLDs. A prior and thorough risks and benefits analysis of applying to new GTLDs registration to ICANN must be undertaken by the applicants. This should include techno legal analysis, new GTLDs due diligence, possible Legal Rights Objections under ICANN's New GTLD scheme, etc.

Further, with an increase in new GTLDs registrations, issues like domain names protection, brands protection, trademarks protection, cybersquatting disputes resolution, cyber law compliances, cyber security requirements, cyber due diligence, etc would also arise. Brand owners and trademark owners must prepare their “strategy” in this regard well in advance.

The legal issues of new GTLDs application, their registration and subsequent litigations would surface and a sound policy in this regard can help in minimising the legal risks associated with the same.

Thursday, February 9, 2012

Cyber Security Laws In India

With the growing incidences of cyber attacks against India, cyber security in India has got the attention of Indian government. Cyber security in India is not satisfactory. Whether it is legal framework or practical implementation, cyber security of India is still lagging far behind that other nations.

We have no dedicated cyber security laws in India and we urgently need a dedicated cyber security legal framework in India. Further, cyber security capabilities of India must be strengthened so that cyber attacks against India’s critical infrastructures can be prevented.

The cyber laws and cyber security trends of India 2011 by Perry4Law and Perry4Law Techno Legal Base (PTLB) has clearly showed the cyber security vulnerabilities of India. Cyber terrorism against India, cyber warfare against India, cyber espionage against India and cyber attacks against India have already increased a lot. Even the cyber law trends of India 2012 by PTLB have also projected an increased rate of cyber crimes in India and cyber attacks against India in the year 2012.

Cyber security laws in India have not been formulated because there is very low cyber law and cyber security awareness in India. As a result we have very few cyber law firms in India and cyber security law firms in India.

Further, cyber security research, training and education in India are also not fully developed. PTLB is managing the exclusive techno legal cyber security centre of India. In the absence of qualitative educational institutes in India, cyber security courses in India are still maturing. Further, cyber security skills development in India is greatly affected in the absence of practical techno legal trainings in this crucial field.

Indian government has now shown some positive response for strengthening cyber security in India. A national critical information infrastructure protection centre (NCIPC) of India has also been proposed by Indian government. This is appositive development and Perry4Law and PTLB welcome this effort of Indian government.

Monday, January 23, 2012

Legal Issues Of Cloud Computing In India

Cloud computing is a process in which essential hardware and software based services are provided by a third party with no requirement to install such hardware and software by the service seeker. In other words, computational powers, hardware upgrades and latest software are provided on rent in an online environment where individuals and organisations can use the same.

Cloud computing is basically a cost saving mechanism where hardware and software costs are saved by using third party hardware and software. However, cloud computing has its own share of troubles especially in countries like India.

For instance, as per the research and studies of Perry4Law and Perry4Law Techno Legal Base (PTLB), cloud computing in India is risky and India is not ready for cloud computing. Now even other companies have endorsed this conclusion and it has been reported that chief information officers (CIOs) in India are not comfortable using cloud computing in India.

So the chief problem that is emerging in India is that cloud computing in India is still not trusted and India is still not ready for cloud computing. We have no cloud computing policy of India.

This is the reason why cloud computing in India is still at the infancy stage. The primary reasons for this situation is absence of legal framework for cloud computing in India, missing privacy laws, absence of data protection laws in India, inadequate data security in India, etc. Even the basic level cloud computing regulations in India are missing.

Even the cloud computing due diligence in India is missing and companies and individuals are using the same in great disregard of the various laws of India. Cloud computing service providers in India are required to follow cyber law due diligence in India. The cyber law due diligence for Indian companies is now well established but cloud computing and e-commerce service providers are not taking it seriously.

In fact, some companies are already facing a criminal trial in India for posting of objectionable contents by third parties on their platforms. Cloud companies are also required to follow the cyber law of India before they establish their businesses in India. This seems to be missing for the time being.

In fact, many legal experts in India have opined that India must not use software as a service (SaaS), cloud computing, m-governance, etc till proper legal frameworks and procedural safeguards are at place. This has also been accepted by the CIOs community and it is now for the Indian government to do the needful.

Monday, January 16, 2012

Cyber Law Trends Of India 2012

The cyber law trends of India 2011 were provided by Perry4Law and Perry4Law Techno Legal Base (PTLB). This trend covered many techno legal issues that are of tremendous importance to various stakeholders. However, it seems various stakeholders have still not taken issues like cyber law, cyber security, cyber due diligence, e-discovery, social media due diligence, etc seriously.

The year 2012 would be even more challenging for various stakeholders in India and world wide. This is more so for US based companies and websites that are increasingly involved in various conflict of laws issues with India. Some of the issues that may be challenging of various stakeholders in 2012 include legal issues of cyber security, privacy and data protection requirements, cloud computing security and privacy issues, e-surveillance and Internet censorship issues, cyber due diligence requirements, social media due diligence, data privacy laws, online IP violations including copyright violations issues, etc.

The cyber law due diligence in India struck the first blow in the year 2012. Companies like Google, Yahoo, Microsoft, Facebook, etc are already facing criminal prosecution under the cyber law of India and other criminal laws. So serious is the situation that the executives of parent companies of these companies have been summoned to personally appear before Indian court.

Further, online copyright violations by US websites are also testing the effectiveness of US laws vis-à-vis foreign IP rights enforcement. Many websites in US are talking advantage of the conflict of laws and hide behind US laws to escape copyright violation liabilities. In fact, the US copyright office is trying to streamline the Digital Millennium Copyright Act (DMCA) 1998 requirements pertaining to DMCA agents so that safe harbour protection cannot be misused by US based websites.

Perry4Law and PTLB believe that the year 2012 would bring many techno legal challenges in the fields like cyber law, cyber security, e-discovery, cyber law due diligence, online IP enforcements, etc. Further, new fields like e-legal due diligence and technological legal due diligence in India would also assume significance. It would be a good idea to formulate suitable policies in this regard by various stakeholders.

US Companies, India, Conflict Of Laws And Criminal Liabilities

Companies like Google, Microsoft, Yahoo, etc and social media websites like Facebook, etc are currently facing criminal trail in India for not removing objectionable contents from their respective websites.

According to cyber law of India and laws of other jurisdiction, the safe harbour protection of Internet intermediaries is lost the moment they are notified of the offending act or omission. However, till they are notified regarding offending contents, they are not liable for violations committed by their users.

However, US companies are not following Indian laws and they are insisting upon following of US laws even if Indian laws are clearly violated. For instance, websites located in US are openly violating the copyright of Indian websites and when they are contacted in this regard to remove the copyright violating posts they ask Indians to use US laws like Digital Millennium Copyright Act (DMCA) 1998.

Surprisingly, even if these US companies are informed in writing and with relevant information like weblinks of copyright violating posts and copyright subsisting posts, they still insist upon following of DMCA procedure. What is more frustrating is that a majority of these US websites and companies are themselves not following the requirements of DMCA and hence are not entitled to its safe harbour protection.

Even in the case of cyber laws, US companies are applying US standards and are not following Indian standards. This is a classic situation that is occurring due to conflict of laws. This is also the reason why an international cyber law treaty is required to being harmonious application of cyber law principles.

US need to change its policy regarding enforcement of foreign IP rights and cyber laws. By not respecting the laws of other countries, US websites and companies are imposing laws like SOPA and PIPA upon themselves. Further, companies like Google must pay special attention as they are deriving revenue out of online advertisements placed upon such copyright violating posts. This makes them not only a beneficiary but also liable for damages in appropriate cases.

Companies like Microsoft, Yahoo, Google and Facebook are facing prosecution under the Indian cyber law. Further, if we analyse the cyber law trends in India of 2012 and cyber security trends of India 2012, such prosecutions are going to increase further in future. Insisting upon following of US laws to take action against offenders and websites located in US would not serve any purpose if branches or subsidiaries of such companies are located in India. Further, if such websites and companies fail to comply with Indian laws, Indian government can block such foreign websites in India.

The present litigation before Indian courts is just a beginning and US companies and websites must start respecting Indian laws. If cyber crimes are committed with great disregard to Indian laws and the copyright and other IP rights are openly violated by such companies and websites, their prosecution in India is inevitable. Perry4Law and Perry4Law Techno Legal Base (PTLB) strongly recommend that such foreign companies and websites must ensure cyber due diligence in India to escape various civil, criminal and financial obligations.

Corruption And Technology Related Due Diligences In India

The recent spate of corruption related disclosures in India has sent a strong message to Indian and foreign companies to ensure that their business are strictly in compliance with Indian and foreign laws. Naturally, companies that have entered into merger and acquisitions (M&A) in the past are now looking forward to ensure that nothing fishy happened during such M & A transactions.

These Indian and foreign companies are worried about the potential legal and tax liabilities arising out of various scams and corporate frauds and they are engaging law firms to do a due diligence analysis on the M&As or foreign direct investments (FDIs) they’ve made in India. Law firms are carrying out legal due diligence exercises to detect any loopholes that could result in liabilities on behalf of their clients to avoid litigation possibilities arising out of deals done in the past.

Some multinational companies are also doing legal due diligence to ensure that the Indian subsidiaries and companies they are about to invest or have already invested in are complying with the foreign laws like Foreign Corrupt Practices Act (FCPA) 1977 of the US and the UK Bribery Act 2010.

Even companies that are now exploring the possibility of M&A are taking precautions before entering into such partnerships. While there is no particular department for dealing with all the aspects of corporate business at a single place (Ministry of Corporate Affairs deals with corporate matters) yet department of information technology (DIT) is the chief department that deals with technology related issues. These include cyber law, cyber security, e-commerce, e-governance, spectrum allocation, telecom licensing, etc.

However, till now companies were not very cautious in their dealings in cyberspace and technology related fields. The information technology act 2000 (IT Act 2000) is the cyber law of India that prescribes various cyber law due diligence in India for areas like e-commerce, e-governance, Internet intermediary liability in India, social media due diligence in India, etc.

However, companies are in controversy these days in India. For instance, doubts have been raised regarding the manner in which Reliance and Airtel blocked websites in India. Similarly, some have even suggested that DIT must investigate the case of blocking of websites in India by Reliance, Airtel and other Internet service providers (ISPs).

Similarly, companies like Google, Facebook, etc are already in cyber law legal tangle in India. Indian government is claiming that these companies failed to comply with Indian laws, including cyber law of India. While the guilt or innocence of these companies is still to be established yet this episode has shown the importance of cyber due diligence for Indian companies.

Cyber crimes at social media websites in India are increasing and these social media platforms cannot ignore the same especially once they are made aware of the same. The social media websites investigation in India is going to increase and more and more e-discovery for social media in India would be conducted. Even cyber law due diligence for banks in India is going to increase.

Another area that requires a special mention is the contemporary practice known as e-legal due diligence in India. This requires domain specific techno legal expertise and a sound knowledge of both technical and legal aspects. It is an advanced and improved form of traditional legal due diligence in India that is done in an offline environment. With companies now shifting their data and information to data centers and virtual data rooms (VDRs), e-legal due diligence in India and abroad would be the norm.

Perry4Law and Perry4Law Techno Legal Base (PTLB) strongly recommend that Indian and foreign companies must conduct a thorough corruption and technology related due diligence analysis in India as soon as possible.

Sunday, January 1, 2012

Cyber Law Of India Should Be Reformed

Technological issues when collaborated with legal framework bring complex situations. It is very difficult to provide a legal framework for technological issues. India is also trying to grapple with this problem. Although cyber law in India has been enacted in the form of information technology act 2000 (IT Act 2000) yet it has remained archaic and non performer. The cyber law trends in India 2011 proved this point.

Cyber law of India needs to be rejuvenated. The emphasis must be to develop and protect Indian cyberspace rather than considering as a threat to be tackled through Internet censorship, websites blocking, e-surveillance, phone tapping and similar anti civil liberties protection in cyberspace.

Similarly stress should be given to cyber security of India through cyber security due diligence and mandatory obligations. The cyber security trends in India 2011 have proved that various stakeholders in India are not paying enough attention to cyber security. This is more so regarding banks in India that are not following the cyber security guidelines of Reserve Bank of India (RBI).

Perry4Law and Perry4Law Techno Legal Base (PTLB) believe that a major reason for poor performance on Indian cyber law and cyber security is that we have mixed all the aspects in a single law. For instance, although IT Act 2000 covers issues like cyber law, cyber security, cyber forensics, encryption, e-governance, e-commerce, cyber terrorism, etc yet the same are covered by a single section or more. This way none of them are individually effective.

We must have a separate and dedicated law for each of these issues that seem to have been dumped into a single law making it ineffective and useless for those issues. Further, the information technology amendment act 2008 (IT Act 2008 amendments) have further complicated the issue. By making almost all the cyber crimes “bailable”, Indian government has created a big nuisance for itself.

Perry4Law and PTLB hope that the year 2012 would bring major relief in this regard. Law making is a lengthy and tedious process and the sooner it is started the better it would be for the larger interest of India.

Saturday, December 24, 2011

Financial Frauds And IT Crimes In Indian Companies Is Increasing

Financial frauds and cyber crimes have plagued Indian corporate sector. IT and cyber frauds in Indian companies has increased a lot. Corporate IT frauds and cyber crime investigations in India have also increased. This has also necessitated cyber due diligence for Indian companies.

White collar crimes and financial frauds are increasing in India. By its very nature these high profile crimes affect corporate sector. Indian companies are also facing increased corporate frauds, financial frauds, white color crimes and technological frauds.

With growing dependence upon information and communication technology (ICT) for various corporate functions, corporate systems and corporate assets are exposed to diverse forms of cyber attacks. Further, data privacy laws in India, data protection laws in India, privacy laws in India, etc have further added responsibilities for corporate sector of India.

Further, companies in India are also required to follow cyber law due diligence in India and cyber security due diligence in India. However, absence of techno legal cyber skills and cyber crimes investigation trainings in India, technology related crimes and cyber crimes have increased in India. Companies in India are facing growing threats from malware attacks, phishing attacks, ATM frauds, online banking threats, trading fraud, etc.

Clearly, Indian companies are not prepared to deal with these sophisticated technology crimes and organised crimes. Recently the companies bill 2011 has been tabled in lok sabha that carries few reformatory provisions in this regard. It was planned to give more powers to serious frauds investigation office (SFIO) of India. Under the proposed companies bill 2011, SFIO has been given a statutory recognition. This is a good step as it would help in curbing corporate frauds in India.

Perry4Law and Perry4Law Techno Legal Base (PTLB) strongly recommend that it is high time for Indian companies to take care of the cyber due diligence and cyber security due diligence requirements under various laws of India. These due diligence requirements are essential part of overall audit strategy of each company. The sooner cyber law and cyber security are taken seriously by Indian companies the better it would be for the larger interest of all stakeholders.

Friday, December 23, 2011

Corporate IT Frauds And Cyber Crimes Investigation In India

Corporate frauds and crimes have taken a new shape in the present information technology age. Data theft, privacy violations, intellectual property rights (IPRs) violation, trade secrets theft, financial frauds, etc have also increased in the corporate sector of India. Even white collar crimes and organised crimes have increased a lot.

Clearly, IT and cyber frauds in Indian companies have increased a lot. These frauds have necessitated cyber due diligence for Indian companies. Further, these IT frauds and corporate cyber crimes have necessitated for their timely and proper investigation. Corporate laws of India must be suitable amended to address these issues in India.

There are multiple investigation agencies in India depending upon the nature of the wrong or crime. Corporate frauds and corporate cyber crimes can be prosecuted at the administrative level or in civil and criminal courts.

Investigation of corporate IT frauds and corporate cyber crimes is a complicated process that requires techno legal training and expertise. These offences require a good working knowledge of both technical and legal knowledge.

Cyber crime investigation methods in India are still maturing. There are very few cyber crime investigators in India that can investigate a cyber crime in techno legal manner. Cyber crime investigation training in India is urgently required so that more such investigators can be produced. With growing cases of corporate IT frauds and corporate cyber crimes, the demand for such cyber crime investigators in India is going to increase.

Perry4Law and Perry4Law Techno Legal Base (PTLB) are providing world renowned and exclusive techno legal trainings to various stakeholders. Some of the areas covered by PTLB are cyber due diligence training in India, cyber forensics trainings in India, cyber security training in India, corporate IT frauds prevention training in India, cyber crime investigation training in India, etc.

Recently, corporate frauds like Satyam fraud, Citibank fraud at Gurgaon, etc came to the light in India. More such frauds may be possible in near future. Realising the gravity of the situation, Indian government decided to further strengthen the powers of serious frauds investigation office (SFIO) of India. The proposed companies bill 2011 has also decided to grant a statutory recognition to SFIO so that corporate frauds can be effectively tackled. Further, corporate and banking laws in India are in the process of being strengthened.

This is a good decision. However, SFIO must develop techno legal expertise to effectively tackle the growing cases of corporate IT frauds and corporate cyber crimes in India. SFIO should immediately start developing techno legal capabilities so that we have a strong and effective authority that can not only deter corporate IT frauds but can also successfully prosecute and punish them. Perry4Law and PTLB would extend their techno legal expertise in this regard if requested by SFIO or any other law enforcement agency or other agency of Indian government.

Cyber Due Diligence For Indian Companies

Cyber due diligence in India has finally arrived in India. The information technology act, 2000 (IT Act 2000) is the sole cyber law of India. IT Act 2000 prescribes cyber due diligence requirements on the part of various stakeholders like banks, companies, individuals, Internet intermediaries, e-commerce sites, etc.

However, till now cyber due diligence in India has not been taken seriously. This is so because cyber law awareness is not very good among various stakeholders. Similarly, civil and criminal prosecutions for lack of cyber due diligence in India is a rare phenomenon. Since ignorance of law if no excuse, in future cases for lack of cyber due diligence would increase in India.

IT and cyber frauds in Indian companies is increasing these days. However, a majority of Indian companies are not performing cyber due diligence in India. The companies in India are required to follow cyber law due diligence in India and cyber security due diligence in India. In the absence of proper due diligence these companies may find themselves in trouble.

Social media laws in India and social networking laws in India would bring their own share of cyber due diligence. Cyber law on social media and networking sites in India is pretty stringent and employees of a company may violate the same intentionally or unintentionally. Internet intermediary law in India and cyber due diligence cannot be taken lightly in India anymore.

Another sector that is urgently demanding cyber due diligence is banking industry of India. Cyber due diligence for banks in India is long due. Banks and companies in India are facing growing threats from malware attacks, phishing attacks, ATM frauds, online banking threats, trading fraud, etc. If a bank cannot show that it performed cyber due diligence and such cyber frauds and cyber crimes occurred without its negligence, it may be required to bear the financial loss. Presently Indian banks are not complying with cyber law due diligence requirements in India.

Finally, the scope and use of e-discovery in India is also increasing. Whether it is a corporate investigation, civil suit or criminal proceedings, e-discovery is playing a decisive role world over. Further, e-discovery laws and practices in India are developing as well. Even e-discovery related litigation, LPO and KPO services in India are growing.

Perry4Law and Perry4Law Techno Legal Base (PTLB) strongly recommend that cyber due diligence training in India needs to be developed so that cyber due diligence compliances by various stakeholders is possible. This training should be a regular and integral part of the corporate strategy of each company. There is no escape from cyber due diligence in India and companies must accept this reality as soon as possible.

IT And Cyber Frauds In Indian Companies Is Increasing

White collar crimes and financial frauds are increasing in India. By its very nature these high profile crimes affect corporate sector. Indian companies are also facing increased corporate frauds, financial frauds, white color crimes and technological frauds.

With growing dependence upon information and communication technology (ICT) for various corporate functions, corporate systems and corporate assets are exposed to diverse forms of cyber attacks. Further, data privacy laws in India, data protection laws in India, privacy laws in India, etc have further added responsibilities for corporate sector of India.

Further, companies in India are also required to follow cyber law due diligence in India and cyber security due diligence in India. However, absence of techno legal cyber skills and cyber crimes investigation trainings in India, technology related crimes and cyber crimes have increased in India. Companies in India are facing growing threats from malware attacks, phishing attacks, ATM frauds, online banking threats, trading fraud, etc.

Clearly, Indian companies are not prepared to deal with these sophisticated technology crimes and organised crimes. Recently the companies bill 2011 has been tabled in lok sabha that carries few reformatory provisions in this regard. It was planned to give more powers to serious frauds investigation office (SFIO) of India. Under the proposed companies bill 2011, SFIO has been given a statutory recognition. This is a good step as it would help in curbing corporate frauds in India.

Perry4Law and Perry4Law Techno Legal Base (PTLB) strongly recommend that it is high time for Indian companies to take care of the cyber due diligence and cyber security due diligence requirements under various laws of India. These due diligence requirements are essential part of overall audit strategy of each company. The sooner cyber law and cyber security are taken seriously by Indian companies the better it would be for the larger interest of all stakeholders.

Tuesday, December 20, 2011

E-Delivery Of Public Services Development Policy Loan (DPL) Project Of India

Electronic delivery of services is an effective method to introduce transparency in governmental dealings and to reduce corruption therein. Similarly, e-delivery of services can also bring efficiency that can reduce costs and unnecessary time taking by government departments.

For instance, Securities and Exchange Board of India (SEBI) is planning to use electronic initial public offer (E-IPO) in India. With this investors would be able to bid for shares electronically and without the need for signing any papers physically. This could also be used as a mean to provide an exit to companies which are listed exclusively on defunct exchanges.

Similarly, Indian judiciary is exploring the possibility of using an electronic bail communication system in India. This system would ensure sending of bail order in real time so that unreasonable detention in jail can be avoided.

Further, with the passing of the proposed Cable TV Networks (Regulation) Second Amendment Bill 2011 of India, digital television services would be offered to consumers at affordable prices and with superior quality.

Even on the front of social networking, Indian government is considering enacting a framework and guidelines for use of social media for government organisations. This would ensure an interaction between government departments and general public on crucial issues and public grievances. A good social media policy of India can be really helpful in this regard.

Even private outsourcing models have been developed where citizen to government LPO and KPO services in India would be extended in future. This would be an extension of e-delivery of services from private sector to the government in India as pioneered by Perry4Law and Perry4Law Techno Legal Base (PTLB).

Recently the World Bank and Indian government signed a loan agreement of $150 million for the e-delivery of public services in India. In order to get the benefits of such loan, electronic services delivery in India has been proposed in the past. E-delivery of public services in India would still take few years as we have no legal framework for mandatory e-governance in India.

With the proposed draft Electronic Delivery of Services Bill 2011 (EDS Bill 2011) Indian government has for the first time shown its willingness to provide e-governance services in India. However, the proposed Draft Electronic Services Delivery Bill 2011 “failed” to provide mandatory e-governance services in India. The real problem with Indian e-governance initiatives in general and proposed ESD Bill 2011 in particular is that legal framework for mandatory electronic services delivery in India is still missing from it.

Legal framework for mandatory e-governance services in India is long due. Till mandatory e-governance services in India are ensured, e-delivery services in India cannot succeed.

An electronic services delivery policy of India must be formulated as soon as possible that must mandate a compulsory e-delivery of services in India. Such e-delivery of services must be provided in a time bound manner to be successful. Till now there are no hints of these pre requisites and the e-delivery of public services DPL project of India cannot succeed in these circumstances.

Monday, December 19, 2011

Electronic Bail Granting And Communication System In India

Granting of bail in a criminal matter ensures the right to life and liberty of an individual. While granting a bail, it is ensured that the normal life off the grantee is not jeopardised due to the initiation of a criminal proceeding. In many cases, although the bail is granted yet its communication and final execution may take some time. This seems to be an unreasonable exercise and avoidable evil.

Information and communication technology (ICT) can easily, instantly and most effectively solve this problem that Indian judiciary has unnecessarily prolonged. Use of ICT for judicial and legal reforms in India is well recognised and establishment of e-courts in India could bring many far reaching legal and judicial reforms in India.

Although e-courts project of India has been launched since 2003 yet it has still not seen the light of the day. There are many reasons why e-courts in India failed to take a start. Lack of will and technical expertise seem to be the main reasons. We must concentrate upon “e-courts capacity development” aspect that is still missing. We have to ensure e-courts related skills development in India that is presently missing. Further, ICT training for judges in India is also long due.

Establishment of e-courts in India must be expedited. We have a single techno legal e-courts training and consultancy centre of India managed by Perry4Law Techno Legal Base (PTLB) that is working in this direction.

However, some positive developments are also taking place in India. Few judges in India are encouraging use of ICT for judicial purposes and to ensure a speedier justice. For instance, it has been recognised that bail orders through e-mail can be sent. Further validity of electronic legal notices in India is by and large confirmed and acknowledged.

Supreme Court of India recently decided to experiment with email notices to respondents to cut the delay in the traditional method of serving notices. The bench clarified that it is not making a new rule but providing for an additional mode for service of notices. The traditional method of notice sending is still kept intact.

The bench also realised that there may be some difficulties in implementing this initiative. It asked all the lawyers present in the court about putting in practice the serving of notice through emails, at least to start with in commercial matters.

Recently a petition in Bombay High Court challenged the detention of an accused that has been either acquitted or released on bail. It was contended that if the accused are acquitted or released on bail, the time taken to communicate the acquittal by the court to jail authorities resulted in illegal detention. In order to mitigate the hardships to such accused, it was suggested that the current practice of using snail mail for communication of acquittal and bail orders be replaced with a web-based service that links all district courts. The court inquired as to the cyber security efficacy of this proposal and asked the National Informatics Centre (NIC) to give its opinion in this regard. The NIC vouched for the feasibility and cyber security of such a proposal.

However, NIC opined that while a web-based portal would be safe as a temporary measure, using emails for communication would be vulnerable to fraud. NIC suggested two methods - delivery through web portals and emails, and highlighted security issues and procedures to ensure that no fraudulent orders are accessed for action. NIC also suggested that in future digital signatures can also be sued to further secure such electronic communications.

This is a good development in the right direction. It would be even better if granting of bail itself can be done in a cyber secure online environment. When e-courts are finally established in India, both application for bail as well as its granting and communication can be done through online mechanisms. Perry4Law and PTLB strongly recommend use of such methods in future.

Sunday, December 18, 2011

E-Commerce Laws In India

Technology has brought many important changes the way we deal in our day to day lives. Whether it is e-governance or e-commerce, individuals and companies are equally benefited due to use of technology.

Realising that cyberspace can bring many commercial benefits; both individuals and companies are ensuring that they have strong online presence. More and more brand promotion and protection in India are done these days in an online environment. Companies and individuals are also ensuring domain name protection in India so that their reputation and goodwill is not misappropriated by others.

We have no dedicated e-commerce laws in India. However, the information technology act 2000 (IT Act 2000), which is the sole cyber law of India, is regulating the e-commerce business and transactions in India. Internet intermediaries liability in India under the IT Act 2000 is very stringent. Cyber law due diligence in India is one aspect that all e-commerce site owners must frequently engage in.

Electronic commerce in India (E-commerce in India) has slowly and steadily entered the Indian market. Toady from tickets booking to purchasing of good and services, everything happens in an online environment.

Of course, where commercial transactions occur, disputes and differences are bound to occur. To prevent and resolve these disputes we need norms, regulations and laws that are acceptable to all the stakeholders.

The e-commerce law of India is primarily incorporated in the information technology act, 2000 (IT Act 2000) that takes cares of legal obligations of both sellers and buyers of good and services in cyberspace.

The IT Act 2000 prescribes rules and norms for online contract formulation. The traditional concepts of offer, acceptance etc, as applicable under the contractual laws, have also been covered by the IT Act 2000. The only difference is that they have been customised as per the requirements of cyberspace.

However, e-commerce transactions and contracts also attract certain additional legal liabilities that e-commerce players in India are not very much aware. For instance, very few e-commerce players in India are aware that they are “intermediaries” within the meaning of IT Act 2000. Further, there are very few e-commerce lawyers and law firms in India that can provide expert services in this regard.

Further, other laws, including intellectual property laws, make these e-commerce players labile for civil and criminal actions. For instance, these e-commerce players can be held liable for online infringement of copyright in India of the copyright owners.

Similarly, if any person posts an offending material at the e-commerce site or otherwise deal with the e-commerce site in an illegal manner, the e-commerce site owner may find himself in trouble.

Cyber law due diligence in India is one aspect that all e-commerce site owners must frequently engage in. The present laws of India are stringent in nature and subsequently claiming ignorance of such laws would not make much difference.

Perry4Law and Perry4Law Techno Legal Base (PTLB) strongly recommend that before opening an e-commerce site or business, the owner of the same must consult a good techno legal law firm that can advice him upon all the possible and applicable aspect of e-commerce laws in India.

Saturday, December 17, 2011

Cyber Law On Social Media And Networking Sites In India

Social media and networking sites have a crucial role to play. Now even governments across the world acknowledge this importance of social media websites. India is one such country that is currently trying to deal with social media sites. However, we have no dedicated social media laws in India. It has even been reported that guidelines for social media contents monitoring in India would be issued very soon.

However, till now we have no social media policy in India. Even we do not have dedicated social networking laws in India that can take care of the misuses of social platforms. However, the framework and guidelines for use of social media for government organisations has been recently suggested by department of information technology. Theses guidelines provide an Indian social media framework for governmental departments and organisations that employees of these organisations must follow.

Social media is considered to be an Internet intermediary as per Indian cyber law. The recent controversy of Internet censorship in India has once again reiterated the importance of effective social media laws in India.

Cyber law due diligence in India has become very stringent. This applies to various fields and to multiple stakeholders. For instance, cyber due diligence for banks in India is now a well known requirement for banks in India. However, Internet intermediaries are the most widely covered stakeholders in this regard. Intermediaries liability for cyber law due diligence in India is really tough.

Indian government is very keen in regulating the contents of social media in a constructive manner. This occasionally results in censorship of Internet in India. Further, Indian government is now openly acknowledging surveillance of Internet traffic in India.

Recently Internet intermediaries in India have been asked to pre screen contents before they are posted on their websites. India wants companies like Google and Facebook to censor users’ contents before they are posted.

In a related incidence, Yahoo has filed a petition raising the questions regarding the right to privacy of a company that stores sensitive data of its customers and users and to what extent authorities can coerce it to part with the information considered necessary to either track terror perpetrators or thwart future attacks. The Google’s outcry for lack of Internet intermediary law in India is another example of growing dissatisfaction towards Indian cyber laws, especially Internet intermediary laws of India.

However, social media sites have certain techno legal obligations and liabilities as per Indian laws. For instance, social networking sites are liable for online IPRs violations, including online copyright violations in India. Although we have no law on the lines of online copyright infringement liability limitation Act (OCILLA) of United States yet the “safe harbour” provisions protecting intermediaries are not available under certain conditions as per Indian laws. Social networking sites must be aware of these limitations while operating in India. However, if social media sites are working within the framework of Indian laws, unreasonable e-surveillance, Internet censorship and websites blocking should not be by Indian government.

The corporate environment of India is changing rapidly as per global; requirements. Corporate laws in India are proposed to be streamlined with the introduction of the proposed Companies Bill 2011. The foreign direct investment (FDI) in India has been liberalised in many sectors. Even FDI in pharmaceuticals sector in India has been liberalised. Securities and Exchange Control Board (SEBI) has also proposed an electronic Initial public offer in India (E-IPO in India). These steps are pointing towards and open and transparent governmental functioning and not e-surveillance and Internet censorship oriented model.

Internet censorship in India can create problems for not only FDI in India but also for the growth of various sectors including banking sector of India. An integrated modern banking law for India is already in pipeline and an e-surveillance model of India would not be beneficial for the same.

Perry4Law and Perry4Law Techno Legal Base (PTLB) strongly recommend that Indian government must enact strong and effective social media laws, e-governance laws and e-commerce laws in India. Social networking laws in India must be so drafted as would benefit all the stakeholders.

Friday, December 16, 2011

Social Networking Laws In India

With the fast growing social networking platforms in India it has become essential to enact effective social media laws in India. Presently social networking laws in India are not mature enough to take care of social media in the most appropriate manner. Social media is considered to be an Internet intermediary as per Indian cyber law. The recent controversy of Internet censorship in India has once again reiterated the importance of effective social media laws in India.

Social networking in India has increased tremendously. This has also given rise to many legal issues as well. Most of these legal issues are related to online acts or omissions that are resulting in giving rise to civil and criminal liabilities.

Laws ranging from intellectual property rights (IPRs) to information technology laws are applicable to social networking acts or omissions in India. The growing demands for cyber due diligence in India has further necessitated for adopting of a sound social networking policy in India by various stakeholders.

Social networking media is an “intermediary” within the meaning of Indian information technology act 2000 (IT Act 2000). Thus social networking sites in India are liable for various acts or omissions that are punishable under the laws of India. For instance, social networking sites are liable for online IPRs violations, including online copyright violations in India.

Although we have no law on the lines of online copyright infringement liability limitation Act (OCILLA) of United States yet the “safe harbour” provisions protecting intermediaries are not available under certain conditions as per Indian laws. Social networking sites must be aware of these limitations while operating in India.

At Perry4Law and Perry4Law Techno Legal Base (PTLB) we have been spreading public awareness about social networking issues in general and cyber laws in particular. We hope that social networking sites would be cautious while operating in India.

Social Media Laws In India

Social media laws in India are in limelight these days. Social media websites are very popular among technology savvy as well as ordinary Netizens. More and more Netizens are joining social platforms to share their opinions, views, data and details. However, social networking laws in India are not adequate and properly drafted.

Social media includes social networking sites, blogs, forums, wikis, etc. Social media is growingly seen as a medium to connect with millions of professionals, friends and like minded individuals and organisations.

India is also witnessing a growing revolution of information and communication technology (ICT) and social media usage. However, till now we have no social media policy in India. Even we do not have dedicated social networking laws in India that can take care of the misuses of social platforms.

However, the framework and guidelines for use of social media for government organisations has been recently suggested by department of information technology. Theses guidelines provide an Indian social media framework for governmental departments and organisations that employees of these organisations must follow.

Perry4Law and Perry4Law Techno Legal Base (PTLB) strongly recommend that Indian government must enact strong and effective social media laws, e-governance laws and e-commerce laws in India. These three fields are going to assume centre stage in the near future and their regulation by Indian government would be required.

Till now India has enacted a single technology law in the form of information technology act 2000 (IT Act 2000). It has tried to cover all the three issues but not with great success. This is so because these three fields are very vast and require a different treatment and separate law. Perry4Law and PTLB strongly recommend enacting suitable laws in this regard.

Sunday, September 25, 2011

E-Commerce Laws In India

Information and communication technology (ICT) has changed the way we make our commercial transactions. Even payments for such online dealings and transactions can be made through an online mode. One such commercial use of ICT is electronic commerce.

Electronic commerce in India (E-commerce in India) has slowly and steadily entered the Indian market. Toady from tickets booking to purchasing of good and services, everything happens in an online environment.

Of course, where commercial transactions occur, disputes and differences are bound to occur. To prevent and resolve these disputes we need norms, regulations and laws that are acceptable to all the stakeholders.

The e-commerce law of India is primarily incorporated in the information technology act, 2000 (IT Act 2000) that takes cares of legal obligations of both sellers and buyers of good and services in cyberspace.

The IT Act 2000 prescribes rules and norms for online contract formulation. The traditional concepts of offer, acceptance etc, as applicable under the contractual laws, have also been covered by the IT Act 2000. The only difference is that they have been customised as per the requirements of cyberspace.

However, e-commerce transactions and contracts also attract certain additional legal liabilities that e-commerce players in India are not very much aware. For instance, very few e-commerce players in India are aware that they are “intermediaries” within the meaning of IT Act 2000.

Further, other laws, including intellectual property laws, make these e-commerce players labile for civil and criminal actions. For instance, these e-commerce players can be held liable for online infringement of copyright in India of the copyright owners.

Similarly, if any person posts an offending material at the e-commerce site or otherwise deal with the e-commerce site in an illegal manner, the e-commerce site owner may find himself in trouble.

Cyber law due diligence in India is one aspect that all e-commerce site owners must frequently engage in. The present laws of India are stringent in nature and subsequently claiming ignorance of such laws would not make much difference.

Perry4Law and Perry4Law Techno Legal Base (PTLB) strongly recommend that before opening an e-commerce site or business, the owner of the same must consult a good techno legal law firm that can advice him upon all the possible and applicable aspect of e-commerce laws in India.

Friday, September 23, 2011

Online Commercial Arbitration In India

Arbitration is a cost effective and expeditious dispute resolution mechanism. A majority of commercial disputes are resolved through the mode of arbitration. International commercial arbitration has also become an emerging trend these days. Generally, an arbitration clause is incorporated in various contracts and commercial contracts that prescribe resolution of a future dispute through arbitration.

Traditional litigation is not a productive mechanism to resolve disputes as it is costly and time consuming in nature. Thus, there is a gradual shift from litigation to arbitration in commercial matters.

A new aspect has been added to commercial dispute resolution and commercial arbitration by the information and communication technology (ICT). ICT has introduced a novel dispute resolution mechanism known as online dispute resolution (ODR). Although ODR in India has still to keep a pace yet it has been used in developed countries for many purposes, especially for resolving cross border e-commerce disputes.

At Perry4Law Techno Legal Base (PTLB) we are not only providing training and courses on ODR but are also actively using the same for contractual and commercial disputes resolution in India. In fact, Perry4Law and PTLB have provided the exclusive technology dispute resolution policy of India and ODR policy of India so that ODR may gain popularity and a wider acceptance in India.

PTLB has supplemented its ODR initiatives with other techno legal initiatives. The chief among them are e-courts research and training centre, digital evidencing centre, cyber forensics centre, etc. We hope our initiatives and efforts would be beneficial for the growth of online commercial arbitration in India and world wide.