Cyberbullying, identity theft may come under Digital Bill
The new Bill will replace the Information Technology Act, 2000
As the Centre works on a modern law for the Internet ecosystem to replace the two decade old Information Technology Act, introducing online specific offences is expected to be a key focus of the upcoming Digital India Bill.
Sources said that the Ministry of Electronics and IT (MeitY) could classify impersonation, identity theft, catfishing, and cyberbullying of children as offences under the new Bill, recognising that offences in the online world, especially social media platforms, can be unique with no equivalent in the offline world.
The new Bill will replace the Information Technology Act, 2000, which is currently India’s core legal framework that regulates entities on the Internet.
Offences listed in the IT Act are essentially borrowed from the offline world given that the law was passed before the era of social media and online dating platforms became commonplace.
India currently does not have any laws around online-specific harms.
To formulate the Digital India Bill, MeitY is learnt to have reached out to more than 200 young people and parents asking for their inputs on what they consider a threat on the Internet.